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Visitors and viewers flock to see Crufts 2013

The Kennel Club today thanks everybody that helped to make Crufts 2013 such a huge success, as visitor numbers to the event increased by three percent and viewing figures on More4 and Channel 4 hit an all time high.

The number of people attending Crufts 2013, which took place at the NEC, Birmingham from 7-10 March, increased by three percent from 145,000 in 2012 to almost 149,500 this year.

An average of 1.7 million dog lovers tuned into Channel 4 and Channel 4+1 on Sunday night to see Jilly, the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen be crowned as Best in Show, and Owen and Haatchi announced as the winners of Friends for Life, with viewing figures peaking at 2 million. The broadcast across the whole event, on More4 and Channel 4, delivered an audience which cumulatively peaked at 4.5 million over the four programmes.

Additionally, 145,000 hours of watch-time was clocked up on the Crufts live internet stream during the show, with over 13,000 subscriptions to the Crufts YouTube channel.  The Crufts Facebook page was hugely popular, delivering pictures, videos, news and comment throughout the show and now has over 100,000 likes – the picture of Jilly alone received 9,477 likes and 681 comments.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, said: “We are ecstatic that Crufts continues to hold such a special place in people’s hearts, particularly at a time when other events are seeing a decline in visitor numbers due to the economic climate.

“Crufts is such an important event for helping potential dog owners to make responsible decisions about buying a puppy or rescue dog. The event was packed with information about which breeds suits which lifestyles in the Discover Dogs area; how to ensure that you get a healthy puppy from a responsible breeder or rescue home and what is being done generally to improve dog health, in the Breeding for the Future area and how to be a responsible dog owner in areas such as the Good Citizen Dog Training ring.

“It is also a chance to celebrate the truly extraordinary relationship that people share with their dogs. Whether you were watching the breed showing, culminating in the prestigious Best in Show final; the dog heroes competition, Friends for Life; the Crufts Factor talent competition; the Scruffts family crossbreed competition, or the thrilling agility, flyball, heelwork to music or obedience events, it was these relationships that shone through.

“We would like to thank everybody who entered their dogs into Crufts or took part in one of the many activities at the show, many of whom had travelled miles and crossed seas to be there, and every member of the visiting and viewing public who supported the event due to their love of dogs.

“We could not have put on such a marvelous show without our fantastic sponsors and without Channel 4 and More4, who as always, did a superb job of showing the nation all that Crufts is about. The television coverage reflected the excitement and diversity of the various Crufts competitions and was a platform for the discussion of interesting and important issues about buying the right puppy, dog health and how to be a responsible dog owner.”

ENDS

12th March 2013

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3/13/2013

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