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College Student Takes Top Title At 2016 Crufts

An East Durham College student is celebrating after her success at the 125th anniversary of the world's largest dog show.

Engage 14+ student, Rebecca Dobson, 16, of Trimdon Grange, fought off stiff competition at this year's Crufts where she scooped the Young Kennel Club's 12-16 years Handling title.

Having come first in the semi-final heats on Thursday, the youngster returned on Sunday for the final and made it into the shortlist of four for the Young Kennel Club Handler of the Year.

Proud mum Victoria Dobson said: "It's a huge achievement, and even to get to Crufts is an achievement.

"It's not just a case of taking the dog in the ring. It's about being able to handle your dog to the best of your ability, showing that you can hold and walk the dog, make it sit.

"You also need to know about its construction and anatomy."

Rebecca has been showing for more than three years now and attends classes two to four times a week.

This year's success at Birmingham NEC was thanks to her team-work with miniature schnauzers Blen and Reggie.

Rebecca is even making a name for herself in the region - judging junior handling competitions while being sought by owners who want her to handle their dogs at shows.

“I can’t describe the feelings I have, it really is incredible," said Rebecca. "I didn’t expect to even be shortlisted, never mind to keep winning.

"I have to keep coming back now."