Dog lovers and their pet pooches are gearing up for the annual event of the North East canine calendar –Wallington Woofs on Sunday 4 March.
Whilst the elite of the canine world are preening themselves ahead of the national Kennel Club event, Crufts (8-11 March), dogs from across the North East are invited to take part in a day of fun at the National Trust’s Wallington in the heart of the Northumberland countryside.
Now in it’s second year, Wallington Woofs is a day dedicated to our four legged friends and offers the chance to get involved in a variety of classes including the dog with the waggiest tail, the cutest puppy, the dog with the saddest eyes and the even the dog that looks most like it’s owner. There will be a guided dog walk, agility demo’s and have a go agility tests as well as a children’s dog trail and a chance to meet rescue dogs in need of a new home.
Wallington’s general manager, Sally Richards, came up with the idea of Wallington Woofs after acquiring her Golden Doodle Scooby, two years ago. Like many dog owners, she found it difficult to find a place where dogs are always welcome and set about making sure Wallington was firmly put on the canine lovers map. Julie Tucker, events and promotion manager for the National Trust at Wallington organises the event, she told us:
“Wallington is a great place for dogs and well behaved dogs are welcome all year round. A lot of our regular visitors come to Wallington to walk their dogs as we’ve got miles of fantastic countryside footpaths. Because of this, we wanted to introduce an event into our annual calendar that all our visitors could enjoy, even the four legged variety.”
In 2010, over 1000 people attended the Wallington Woofs event, many of whom brought along their pet pooch and took part in the fun. The event was enjoyed by all as Julie tells us:
“Last year was a real success. We didn’t know what to expect as it was the first year we’d organised an event like this but feedback from visitors was that they had thoroughly enjoyed the day, and the dogs had a great time too.”
This year, the Trust has teamed up with Cleverpawz Canine Team Challenge Club (CCTCC), who will be helping to run and judge the canine classes, as well as organising an agility knockout battle between their plucky Pugs, and dashing Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. Karen White from CCTCC told us how this show came about:
“We’ve been taking part in agility demonstrations for a number of years and wanted to show people that any breed of dog, not just the traditional Collie, can get involved in agility. We’ve worked up a really fun challenge for our dogs and for the people watching. It’s called the Cavaliers versus Roundheads (Spaniels versus Pugs) and involves a parade followed by a circular knockout battle. Spectators are encouraged to pick a side to cheer.”
For those interested in getting involved in regular Canine Team Challenges, Karen and her colleagues from CCTCC are looking for owners of small dogs to join the club , you can find our more at the Wallington Woofs event.
Other dog loving organisations who will be at Wallington to make the event even more special this year include an artist who will take commissions to paint a portrait of your pooch, Arthur Loves Walks, a company selling limited edition and bespoke leads and collars, No Bones Bakery, Pettisserie, Ziggy Chews, a pet photographer plus many more. The RSPA will also be in attendance with some of the dogs in their care who are looking for a new home as well as offering a micro chipping service for your beloved pet pooches.
“Wallington Woofs is establishing itself as a fun annual event that all the family can enjoy and we hope that it inspires people to come back throughout the year to get involved in another of our family events, or even just for a walk with the dog!”
Wallington Woofs takes place at Wallington, Cambo, Northumberland, NE61 4AR on Sunday 4 March from 11am to 4pm. For more information log onto www.nationaltrust.org.uk/wallington or call 01670 773600.
Find out more about National Trust sites in Northumberland.