Cyprus Mail

Cyprus rescue dog bags award at Crufts (v)

Percy with owner Amanda Bell

A hunting dog rescued from the street in Cyprus has won an award at Britain’s top dog show Crufts.

Percy was named Best Crossbreed Dog of the Year at Crufts on Saturday out of 2,500 entrants.

“This gives a very strong message to people that rescue dogs are gems and also a very strong slap to Cyprus authorities for letting hunters abuse their dogs and abandon them in the thousands every year,” D.O.G. Rescue said on Sunday.

Crufts is the world’s largest dog show, and it opened in Birmingham on Thursday with over 200 breeds hoping to land the main Best in Show award.

Scruffts is a fun part of the competition that takes six family pets to the Crufts arena after a nationwide contest. The dogs compete in six categories, the winners of which head to Crufts to take part in the final. Percy was the winner of the Best Crossbreed Rescue before being declared overall Family Crossbreed Dog of the Year.

Percy was found in January 2018 in a village and was taken to Sheffield in the UK by Amanda Bell and her father Michael in the summer of the same year.

Percy with the award at Crufts

According to D.O.G. Rescue, Percy was in a “horrid state” when he was found and had been hit and shot at by villagers. He was skin and bones when he was rescued, weighing just nine kilos. He is now 22.

At the shelter he did not exit his box when people were around and he would only eat at night when nobody was looking. He was also terrified of people, D.O.G. Rescue said.

Tests on the dig showed that he was suffering from erlichea (a tick disease) and leishmania and was extremely anaemic. His kidneys showed signs of failure but improved after treatment.

He flew to the UK in June 2018 and he has been living the dream ever since.

D.O.G. Rescue Cyprus (Dali Organised Group) is a registered non profit and a charity. It is registered in the UK and has rehomed over 3,000 dogs since 2011. Ten dogs are currently at Larnaca airport with volunteers travelling to the UK.

D.O.G. Rescue takes all dogs from the municipality of Dali and four surrounding villages and from

other areas if there is space.

“Unfortunately every year it gets worse and the numbers are growing,” D.O.G. Rescue said.

Percy was not the only dog at the event with a link to Cyprus. Taking part in the Friends for Life competition were Lance the Labrador and owner Private Lee Hampson. The pair were posted to Cyprus in 2016 after serving in Afghanistan, where Lance was said to have helped both his owner and other serving soldiers.

Scruffts winner announcement

Percy the Pointer cross is your 2019 #Scruffts winner, presented by Michael Ball 🏆

Posted by Crufts on Saturday, 9 March 2019

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