“Think Glastonbury festival for dog” says the organisers of DogFest as they announce the line-up for this year’s event at Bristol’s Ashton Court Estate, June 22 to 23.
DogFest is delighted to announce a raft of fantastic new features for its 2019 festivals…
National treasure Clare Balding will take to the fabulous Live Stage to recount anecdotes from her life, and those of her four-legged friends, to the DogFest crowds. Professor Noel Fitzpatrick will appear in the amazing striped Big Top to talk to hundreds of younger visitors about how much animals matter to us and what inspired him to become a vet. Fans will also have a chance to meet DogFest’s special guests, as both Noel and Clare will be signing copies of their new books at the festival.
Journalist and food critic Kate Spicer will talk about her Sunday Times bestseller Dog Lost. She’ll relive the desperate search for her lurcher Wolfy and how she explored the dark underbelly of London to find him.
Lucy Heath, whom the country took to their hearts on Britain’s Got Talent with her little furry star Trip Hazard, will showcase her inimitable training techniques. No fewer than five of her dogs will perform astounding dog dancing, plus theatrical and obedience training routines. But at DogFest everyone can get involved – and the public can test their own training skills too, with their dog, in a timed, have-a-go Obedience Challenge.
Former policeman Colin Butcher and his spaniel Molly (The Pet Detectives) will demonstrate their uncanny sleuthing skills in finding lost cats across the UK, which have even led them to unearth a treasure trove of jewels!
There’ll also be eye-catching breed meet-ups as large numbers of Dachshunds, Boxers, Staffies, Cockapoos, Labradors, French Bulldogs, Cocker Spaniels and Border Collies gather together with their doppelgangers – and owners swap notes. An Instagram opportunity if ever there was one!
Canicross is the new fitness craze that’s taking over the UK (that’s off-road running, with your dog, in a special harness and linked by a bungee cord). Visitors can watch displays and try out the sport themselves, with their canine pals.
Puppy Zone is brand new this year: adorable little ones can get used to different environments and build their confidence through special experiences and games, all under the expert guidance of the doyenne of puppy trainers, Gwen Bailey.
Another new feature for 2019 is the hilarious celebrity look-a-likey competition; dogs that resemble well-known humans will battle it out in the Hound Hangout to see who takes the crown for best lookalike!
Numerous charities will be raising awareness of their work at DogFest. Dog Lost is typical; it helps reunite dogs with their owners: 2,500 dogs are lost each year and a shocking 30 are stolen every week. StreetVet will also be there; it’s an incredible new charity that gives free medical help to the pets of the UK’s homeless. And on the PDSA stand people can meet remarkable dogs that have demonstrated outstanding bravery and exceptional devotion to duty.
Previously announced attractions at Dogfest include: The Great Dog Walk (opened by Noel, with Clare also joining in on the 2K and 4K courses),Hound Hangout (meet celebrated ‘dogs of Instagram’) and mass participation ‘wag & tone’ aerobics from the main stage. Back-to-back canine entertainment and displays in the Activity Arena mean there’s always something to watch. Dog Diving is a guaranteed crowd pleaser, as are Temptation Alley (where dogs negotiate a course through irresistible toys and treats), hilarious hay bale racing and the ‘just for fun’ dog show.
Animal health and welfare is central to Dogfest and educational talks, Q&As, demonstrations and check-ups are all part of the day. There are free inspections in the Flea and Tick Tent and elsewhere there are free dog MOTs and demonstrations on first aid for pets.
DogFest is super-family friendly and, as with all the best festivals, has great music all around, mouth-watering food and drink – and shopping galore, for people and dogs!
In fact the stands are a ‘woofy wonderland’. Visitors can meet specially trained tennis ball catching dogs and have a glass of Pimms in celebration of Wimbledon and Hungry hounds can fuel up at a dog food café (with specially trained chefs cooking up a storm) or sample delights in a luxury doggy diner.
Further information on all shows can be found at: www.dog-fest.co.uk.
Tickets are available from https://dogfest.seetickets.com/content/ticket-options and the hotline – 0871 220 0260.