A STONE woman who beat depression with the help of her rescue dog, and a schoolgirl turned champion canine trainer took centre stage at the world-renowned Crufts dog show at the weekend.
Caroline Harvey and her cross-breed companion Daisy were demonstrating a new obedience course known as “rally’, while fellow Stone resident Aemillia Nicholson, a Crufts veteran at just 12, was back competing in agility with her border collie Edith.
For Caroline, of St Michael’s Mount, appearing at Crufts was a dream come true and a celebration of how far both pet and owner have come.
Daisy has helped Caroline overcome anxiety and depression, while Caroline gave Daisy a forever home after she was found in a cardboard box outside a Lidl supermarket.
Caroline said: “Before I didn’t want to go out the house but Daisy has changed all that. I love taking her out and it’s great to see her so happy wagging her little tail. She has given me so much.”
Daisy, a Jack Russell Stafford- shire bull terrier cross, attends Benefit Dog Training with Caroline.
Benefit’s chief executive David Deakin said: “Caroline had always dreamed of going to Crufts but I didn’t think it was possible as Daisy is not a pedigree. It’s great to see they are taking on dogs from all different backgrounds.”
At last year’s Crufts Aemillia and Edith enjoyed victory in the Young Kennel Club agility section as part of the Midlands Border Collie Club team. But this year the club had to settle for second place, pipped to the post by a Scottish team.
Aemillia and Edith, of St Chad’s Close, also competed in the YKC jumping event and are now preparing to audition for a place in BBC children’s TV show Who Let The Dogs Out in Manchester tomorrow.