Australian Shepherd wins Crufts 2024 Best in Show

Crufts 2024 winner Viking and handler, Melanie Raymond. Source: Getty Images.

An Australian Shepherd has taken the top spot as Best in Show at the prestigious Crufts 2024 dog show which took place in Birmingham in the UK over the weekend.

Three-year-old Viking took home the coveted Best in Show trophy on Sunday, March 10 in front of a packed crowd and millions of online viewers. He is the second Australian Shepherd to win the title.

Dog lovers and fans of the competition were quick to praise the victorious Viking on the win!

“A wonderful event. A worthy best in show. A worthy reserve best in show.”

“Wonderful choice. Congratulations.”

“Delighted with this result. This dog caught my eye the first time it was on the show.”

“He stood out a mile from the start. Beautiful.”

Competition was stiff with over 19,000 dogs from around the world competing over four days for just seven places in the Crufts 2024 Best in Show final.

The other six finalists were: Elton, a French Bulldog; Raffa, a Papillon; Hendricks, a Weimaraner; Neville, a Leonberger; Zen, a Jack Russell Terrier and Getme, a Basset Griffon Vendeen (Grand).

Delighted (and slightly tearful) with her clever pooch’s win, Viking’s handler and co-owner, Melanie Raymond said, “Pinch me! This is everyone’s dream. Crufts is the one we all want to win!”

“My grandma started showing with Beagles and I feel like I’ve accomplished something she never managed – I’m hoping she is looking down on me,” she added.

While the show ended on a high note, it was not without controversy.

On the final day, protesters wielding a “Boycott Breeders” sign were forcibly removed from the arena.

Animal rights organisation PETA UK took responsibility for the disruption describing the incident as a “peaceful protest” that was met with “physical aggression from security staff” and that they “pulled no punches”.

In a media statement, PETA Senior Campaigns manager Kate Werner explained the purpose behind the protest, “Crufts glorifies the breeding of deformed and disabled animals.”

“PETA urges everyone to avoid this archaic canine beauty pageantry and asks those looking to give dogs a loving home to never buy from a breeder and adopt a lovable, loyal companion from their local shelter,” Werner said.

Adopting a pet, especially an older one, is considered a good move if you are in your retired years.

For some, the thought of being a pet owner can be daunting, an older, more settled pet can be a better fit for those in their senior years, rather than a puppy or kitten that demands more energy.

Jessica Curtis, PETstock Assist’s charity and events lead, says older pets can be far more suitable for retirees, as they are generally lower maintenance.

“Adopted pets that are more settled can be the key to a perfectly balanced lifestyle, helping seniors maintain physical activity, routine and providing companionship,” she says.

If you’re considering welcoming a pet into your life, the following benefits may just be the deciding factor:

  • Companionship
  • Exercise and movement
  • Routine and sense of purpose
  • Stimulation


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