‘Pudsey effect’ helping dogs become more talented

Ashleigh and Pudsey
Ashleigh and Pudsey

Britain’s dogs are becoming more talented thanks to the ‘Pudsey effect’, according to a survey by the Kennel Club.

Almost one-third of dog owners surveyed said the success of the Britain’s Got Talent winner had encouraged them to develop their own pet’s abilities.

More than half said they spent up to five hours a week training their dog’s skills such as tackling obstacles, dancing to music and even riding a surfboard or skateboard.

The survey, which was commissioned by the Kennel Club to launch its annual Crufts Factor competition, revealed that the most popular skills taught to pets were basic obedience, fetching items such as newspapers and slippers around the house, and tackling obstacles and agility.

Following Wellingborough teenager Ashleigh and her dog Pudsey’s triumph on the ITV1 talent show, a third of owners admitted to wanting their dog to pursue a showbiz career if it was talented enough.

The Kennel Club’s Crufts Factor competition is now looking for the next generation of talented dogs to perform in front of a live audience at Crufts 2013 on Sunday, March 10.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club secretary, said: “The Crufts Factor is all about celebrating the extraordinary talents of ordinary dogs, and what better place to do that than on the world’s most famous dog stage. It is great to see the so called ‘Pudsey effect’ motivating people to teach their dogs tricks and take part in dog sports and leisure activities. It is a perfect way for dog and owner to bond and have fun in the process.”

People can upload a video of their dog at the Crufts Facebook page.