First Show Wins Rottweiler Mia Her Place At Crufts
Rottweiler pup Hassavant Marruska, pet name Mia, has qualified for the Junior class at Crufts - and is believed to be the youngest of her breed to do so.
Mia qualified for the renowned competition by coming third place at her first show at the Bournemouth Championship held in the New Forest earlier on this month.
Proud owner David Worth has been breeding dogs for years, starting with German Shepherds.
But he decided to breed rottweilers in a bid to beat their bad press.
Rottweilers are often seen as vicious dogs, partly because of their frequent use in guarding.
Mr Worth said: "I've never had a bad dog. I only know of bad owners not bad dogs.
"One of my dogs is 10st and you'd know if he sat on you but he would never hurt anyone - he likes kids and kids like him."
Training for Mr Worth's prize-winning dogs starts at about five months old and the hard work has already paid off with 18-month-old Keira.
Keira, who is Mia's half sister, has won 18 rosettes, all at open level and Mia looks set to follow.
Mr Worth said he is hoping for good results at Crufts, and believes Mia could do well.
The next Crufts show is scheduled for March 2004 at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham.
Crufts is the largest dog show in the world, with more than 22,000 pedigree dogs competing at this year's event, where the prestigious Best In Show award was given to the Pekinese Danny, and his owners Albert Easdon and Philip Martin.
Over 128,990 visitors attended the 2003 showduring its four days - the largest attendance in Crufts history. The Kennel Club website was visited by 1,387,346 people.
Zoe (2-year old rottie)