22 September 2005


Media Release: for immediate release



New Zealand National Kennel Club Dog Show


This weekend the Westpac Centre is hosting the New Zealand equivalent of Crufts - one of the United Kingdom’s biggest and best attended exhibitions  - with the three day New Zealand Kennel Club Pro Plan National Dog Show. 


It is the first time in the show’s 51-year history that it has been held in the South Island. It is a major occasion for South Island Kennel Club community as well as for the many national exhibitors who will attend.   It is an exciting event that will appeal to the general public. “The whole family will be able to experience dogs in many different ways over a weekend of entertainment and competition,” says Show Chairman, Martin Hewitt


“This is also a first for the Westpac Centre. Without the Westpac Centre I doubt it would have been possible to contemplate South Island as a location to host the show. There hasn’t been this many animals converging on the centre since a large Horse and Dog Show Exhibition in 1997 and this is the largest yet ” says Mike Kelly, Executive Director for Vbase Venue Management group Ltd., the managers of the venue.


“The arena is the perfect venue for this national showcase event. The organisers have done a sterling job organising what is a very complex and precise event. All things going well, we would hope to see the Kennel Club consider Christchurch and the Westpac Centre again for a repeat visit in the future” he said.


“With an acre of floor space, the layout provides plenty of room for the exhibitors and dogs. The 5,000 plus tiered full armrest seating with its easy access provides excellent viewing for spectators.  Outside, the adjacent grassy areas will be used by the Kennel Club for the agility course and a grooming area. There are over 3,000 car parks for competitors and spectators which has been a major problem at other shows”, Martin Hewitt says. 


With the capacity of these facilities, the show has attracted almost 2200 dogs and will be the biggest national dog show for the past six or seven years.  The arena will host 1900 dogs (about 200 more than the previous year) from 141 breeds in the conformation section; 160 in the agility section; and, 110 in the obedience category. They will be under the control of some 1,000 exhibitors and owners with an additional 1,000 handlers.


A highlight of the show will be the Canine Hero Awards for dogs that have saved lives or achieved outstanding success as police drugs or guide dogs. There are also separate awards for family pets and other highly trained dogs.


The show, which runs from 23-25 September is being held in conjunction with PetExpo, a major industry exhibition, at the adjoining Addington Raceway.


“It’s going to be a huge weekend in Christchurch for animal lovers. Visitors are coming from all over the country. It will be an amazing three days of displays and competitions,” says Christchurch Mayor Garry Moore.


“The town will be buzzing almost as much as Show Week with all of our out of town visitors and possibly just as much as Andrea Bocelli’s visit last November” says Mike Kelly “and we expect the accommodations and retail sector to be major beneficiaries of this influx of spending brought about by the event.”


For further information, contact:


Martin Hewitt or


Rosemary Schulte or