On Thursday 8th September, Alex Chalk, MP for Cheltenham, paired with Dogs Trust rescue dog Bouncer to compete with other politicians and their pooches to win the coveted title of ‘Westminster Dog of the Year 2016’. Alex’s dog for the day, Bouncer, is an 8 year old Yellow Labrador in need of a loving new home with his brother Ernie, a Chocolate Labrador.
The 24th annual Westminster Dog of the Year competition, organised by Dogs Trust and the Kennel Club, took place in Victoria Tower Gardens, Westminster.
Despite campaigning hard and canvassing for votes from the public before meeting the expert judges to boast about Bouncer’s heroic deeds and acts of devotion, unfortunately the charming pair did not rank on the day. However, they did get the chance to learn about the need for education to ensure that children understand how to act safely around dogs.
Proud entrant, Alex Chalk M, commented:
‘It’s really great to see so many MPs supporting this worthwhile cause. Of course Bouncer and I would have loved to win, but at the end of the day what really matters is finding our canine companions new, loving homes and learning how we can all better care for our furry friends. I have only known Bouncer one day, and I am sure that he and his brother Ernie would be the perfect pair of pets for a family looking for new additions. It has been a pleasure to take part in the competition, and congratulations to all the winners!’
The judging panel – Steve Jenkinson of the Kennel Club, Graeme Robertson from Dogs Trust, 2015 winning owner Andrea Jenkyns MP and last year’s ‘pawblic’ vote winner Hugo Swire MP - spent the morning with dogs from different political persuasions and ambitions before making their decision.
If you are interested in adopting a dog, please visit the Dogs Trust website to find out more about Bouncer and the many other dogs in need of a home.