Dog-lovers worldwide were shocked when, on March 5th, a second-place Crufts dog was allegedly poisoned and died just over 24 hours after the competition. Two weeks later brought two more allegations of poisoned dogs. What effect will this ‘pawful’ news have on the world-renowned Crufts?(Count the dog-related puns!)
Claiming the title of the largest dog show in the world, Crufts is globally renowned for its groomed, well-trained pooches that compete yearly for prestigious awards and cash prizes. Crufts has been running at the NEC in Birmingham for the past 124 years and, in all of that time, this year proves to be the most scandalous. But is this news something to bark about or are all of these allegations false?
So what actually happened?
Irish-settler dog, Jagger, fell ill and died 28 hours after appearing and winning second place in his class. After a post-mortem, chunks of beef laced with poison were found in his stomach – is it possible that the beloved dog was poisoned by a rival competitor during the event?
Recent findings have suggested that Jagger was in fact poisoned after the Crufts event. As dogs digest their food within six hours, Jagger would’ve been affected by the poison much sooner than he actually was. Could it be possible that he was poisoned accidentally or was this truly an act of malice? Nothing has yet been confirmed. Jagger’s owner, Aleksandra Lauwers, waits with baited breath for the toxicological tests which are due back in the next week.
But could this really have happened at such an esteemed event? It is seeming more likely with two more dogs dying since the event; an afghan hound and a Shih Tzu.
Either way, this speculation has had a ruff effect on Crufts, who have recently responded with a statement. Recognising that some dog-owners may be terrier-fied by the alleged deaths, Caroline Kisko, Secretary of the Kennel Club, has responded by revealing that the organisers of Crufts are devastated by the “tragic” death of Jagger. She continues;
‘Whilst reports surrounding the welfare of dogs at Crufts are taken with the utmost of seriousness, a number of the reports in the news about dogs becoming sick after leaving the show have been from anonymous sources” – meaning that no poisoning of dogs has officially taken place.
So until next week, when test results are released, the truth will be revealed and dog-lovers around the world ‘kennel’ move on and trust in the safety of their dogs at Crufts.
UPDATE: This evening it has been reported that Jagger consumed the poison in Belgium. Does this mean the Crufts murder mystery is solved?
Edited by Caroline Chan