I had a great time yesterday catching up on the dog dancing segment at Crufts 2017 on Youtube. If Crufts is unfamiliar to you, it is the world’s largest dog show, held annually in March in the UK.
There’s dog agility, flyball competitions and of course, my favourite part of the show – Heelwork to Music – or dog dancing, at least that’s just how I describe it to people. :P But, nothing beats seeing it. So here are the winners!!
All videos shared are from Crufts Youtube channel here. I don’t own the rights to them, but I just wanted to share my interest in it with you.
Winning Dog Dancing Routines at Crufts 2017 Freestyle Heelwork to Music Competition
This is Lucy Creek with her dog Skiffle King. They are the UK winner of Crufts 2017 Freestyle Heelwork to Music Competition.
Lucy Creek and Skiffle King (UK)
Lucy (UK) and Skiffle went on to compete the next day in the International category. There was a high level of competition in the International category since you have the best of the best in each country there.
I was wowed by Italy’s Lusy Imbergerova & Deril, whose humorous routine made me laugh. :D
Lusy Imbergerova and Deril (Italy)
Lusy (Italy) was tied for first place with Lucie Plevova (Japan), and unfortunately for Lusy, the judges decided to give the 1st place to Lucie (Japan). So Lusy (Italy) came in second (even though point wise both were tied).
And Germany (if I remember correctly) came in third. Germany’s competitor, Lukas Pratschker was the only male competitor in this competition and I really liked his James Bond routine too. Here’s the video:
Lukas Pratschker and Falco (Germany)
AND really, did you notice how many Lucy’s (and one Lukas) were competing for top place in the competition??? Maybe I should change my name to Lucy or Lusy or Lucie or Lu-something else too. You get the drift. :P
But I digress, please enjoy this brilliant and winning routine by Japan’s Lucie Plevova and her dog Power Jump Aibara from the International Freestyle Heelwork To Music Competition at Crufts 2017.
Lucie Plevova and Power Jump Aibara (Japan)
More about Heelwork to Music
Donna and I attended basic dog dancing lessons before, and our instructor used to say that dog dancing is obedience training but with more fun, music and movement.
According to the UK Kennel Club website, the dog has to show its understanding and knowledge of training commands for the dance routine. This is done by incorporating its obedience skills within the choreography.
Donna and Draco the labrador with their humans practicing during our dog dancing lessons in Singapore! :P
We never did complete the learning of our simple dance routine (oops! :P) so I can’t even imagine the amount of planning and practice beforehand by these teams with their chosen piece of music.
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Two Competition Categories for Dog Dancing
There are two competition categories for dog dancing. One is Heelwork to Music, the other is Freestyle. Heelwork to Music requires the dog to be off-leash in the heel position. Freestyle Heelwork to Music is what you have been seeing in the videos above. The routines include off-leash and movements in any position, but limits heel work to 1/3 or less in the choreography, so there’s actually more room for creativity.
The judges score the routine on programme content, accuracy and execution of movement and musical interpretation. Details here if you are interested. :)
In this final video, Mary Ray (which Crufts describes as the Queen of Heelwork to Music) shares some of her favourite dog training tips and techniques at Crufts 2010.