Rain doesn't bother these dogs

ROBIN RAYMOND
Last updated 07:45 14/08/2012
Caitlin McPhail
SCOTT HAMMOND

Caitlin McPhail waits to compete with her italian greyhound Breeze

Lauren Morris
SCOTT HAMMOND
Lauren Morris with her australian shepherd Teak who won Best Open Dog of the Year.
Claire van der Hoeven
SCOTT HAMMOND
Claire Van der Hoeven from Nelson shelters her five month old border collie Riot from the rain while they wait to compete in the Breed Showing competition
Claire Hokianga
SCOTT HAMMOND
Claire Hokianga from Picton and her english bull terrier Eva compete in their first show.

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Even the rain couldn't stop tails wagging as the Marlborough Kennel Club held its dog of the year awards.

Competitors turned out to strut their stuff in the wet ground at the club's Omaka club grounds on Sunday.

Three-year-old staffordshire bull terrier Cash won dog of the year.

Owner Craig Davies said Cash also claimed the title in 2010. Mr Davies had been showing dogs for 20 years and said the rain would never stop the club show.

"We carry on rain, hail or snow. We've been out here when the snow's been falling and the dogs still have to go round."

The club events were a great place to socialise with people and dogs. Although Cash did not win his class on the day, the overall award was a nice recognition of a year of hard work, Mr Davies said.

Deana Diamante, 14, won the junior handler of the year and also qualified to represent Marlborough at the New Zealand Kennel Club national dog show in October.

Deana said she had shown dogs before at nationals, but this was the first time she had qualified in the handler section.

Deana, who has been showing dogs since she was three, said she enjoyed the competition and the chance to spend time with the dogs, which were her favourite animals.

Mum Lavina Diamante said gaining entry to the national competition was a big deal for the family as the winners got to represent New Zealand at the world famous Crufts dog show in Britain. Marlborough had been well represented in past national competitions.

Among the other winners on the day was Aaliya Ross, 5, who won the club's tiny tot handler of the year award. Aaliya came with her mother Kelleigh Ross from Rai Valley to collect the award.

"It's what you do when you enjoy it, I guess," Mrs Ross said.

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- The Marlborough Express

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