Activists stormed the arena at the final of dog show Crufts last night – to protest extreme breeding.
One of the two protesters brandished a sign saying ‘Crufts: Canine Eugenics’ after disturbing the event while the winner (a two-year-old whippet bitch called Tease with human companion Jill Peak) was being announced.
According to reports, the activists were from Vegan Strike Group – which campaigns against animal abuse – working with animal rights charity PETA.
PETA Director, Elisa Allen, said: “Crufts glorifies pedigree fetishists’ twisted pursuit of the ‘perfect’ dog.
“There’s nothing natural about breeding dogs with extreme and debilitating physical traits, and PETA urges everyone to stay away from this cruel beauty pageant.”
According to PETA, many dogs suffer as a result of extreme breeding, with bulldogs, pugs, Pekingese, and other brachycephalic (flat-faced) dogs struggling to breathe because of their unnaturally shortened airways.
In addition, the group says: “The culture of breeding also has wider implications for canine welfare. Because breeders are churning out litter after litter of unhealthy pedigree puppies, thousands of healthy, adoptable dogs in animal shelters are denied their chance at a loving home.”
PETA shared footage from the event
A Crufts spokesman said: “It appears that protesters from Peta gained unauthorised access to the ring in the main arena at Crufts, and in doing so scared the dogs and put the safety of both dogs and people at risk in a hugely irresponsible way.
“Our main priority at the moment is the wellbeing of the dogs that were in the ring, who are looked after by their owners and show officials.
“The NEC Group have extensive security procedures in place at Crufts and we, along with the NEC Group, will be reviewing what happened as a matter of urgency.”
No animals were harmed by the protest.