Crufts GSD now a champion – ‘we’re very proud’, says owner


THE GERMAN Shepherd who best of breed at Crufts has become a champion – twice over.

  Cruaghaire Catoria (Tori) won the bitch CC, her third, under Andrew Winfrow at Bolton GSD Club at the weekend. And only a few days previously she became a ‘British champion’ after winning at a WUSV/German Shepherd Dog League British Regional Group (BRG) show.

  Co-owner Stuart Cuthbert said he was ‘very satisfied and very proud’, and that he had put the past behind him.

  There was widespread criticism of Tori after her performance in the group ring at Crufts – from the public, some exhibitors and breeders, and even from Kennel Club chiefs, their veterinary advisor and TV commentators. And breed judge Davey Hall took a pasting too, although the performance which led to Tori winning BOB was far calmer than that in the main ring the same evening.

  Tori passed her category three veterinary check at Crufts, the second time she has done so in her showing career, and will not have to go through another to have her champion status confirmed. At Crufts the vet’s form said she was suffering from no visible condition which could adversely affect her health or welfare.

  Despite the criticism Tori was subject to at Crufts, she has won extensively over the last three years, including winning two bests of breed, one with her first CC at Working and Pastoral Breeds Association of Scotland last year under Bill Armstrong.

  She accumulated enough points to become a BRG champion after winning BOB at the Scottish Progressive GSD Group's show. She was awarded V1, the top title in shows run under WUSV. Judge was SV judge Peter Arth.

  Mr Cuthbert told DOG WORLD today that he and his wife Sarah, who bred Tori, had taken the fall-out from Crufts philosophically.

  “The criticism was not directed towards our dog, it was towards the GSD community,” he said. “The show type of GSD draws this kind of nastiness, this nonsense. For the past six or seven years this type of dog has been criticised and exhibitors have had to put up with the nonsense – and for us at Crufts it was slightly exaggerated because Tori didn’t react very well to the Arena.

  “We’re feeling magnanimous and are treating it philosophically. It’s been an experience and we’ve put it behind us, not dwelling on things and are quite happy.

  “Tori has proved herself in the ring time after time and has accumulated enough points and CCs to be a champion twice over. We’re very, very satisfied and very, very proud.”

  After Crufts the GSD League of GB accused the KC and Crufts presenters of generating public hysteria about Tori, and said they had disregarded the views of judges who were breed experts. The TV coverage had acted as jury, judge and hangman, it said.