THEY say you can’t teach old dogs new tricks – but a clever canine and his owner are proving this statement wrong.
Whizz has once again made his mark by competing in the final stages of a major national competition, which recently took place at Olympia in London.
And the year just gone was made even more special for Longhorsley resident Jane Seller when her border collie achieved a prestigious title.
After taking part in agility events with working sheepdog Sky, she got Whizz when he was a puppy with these contests in mind.
And he has not disappointed, as he made it through to the Olympia stage of the Kennel Club Agility Stakes for the fifth time. This was achieved by successfully coming through an initial qualifier and a semi-final in Birmingham.
On this occasion, the seven-year-old was taking part in the Large Agility Stakes section and although he missed out on getting into the top 10 in the morning event, Whizz was second in the afternoon pairs relay – known as the runners-up final.
He came into the contest as an Agility Champion. To earn the title, canines must reach the highest agility level (grade seven) then win three championship class competitions under separate judges.
He has also qualified for the team contest and a championship final at Crufts in March.
Ms Seller said: “Olympia is a fantastic show and I get a real buzz from competing in front of so many people. Whizz has been brilliant from day one and I was absolutely delighted with his performance as he was very consistent and managed two clear rounds.
“He never stops learning as there are always areas we can slightly improve. At home, he likes nicking things and dropping them in front of people, especially when he has an audience.”
She may have many more trips to the top agility events in the future because she is confident that Whizz has a few more years left in him at the highest level and his nephew, Harry, was recently successful in his first competition.