Suffolk dogs will have their day

SUFFOLK'S first ever Dog Day is not be something to be sniffed at as thousands of pooches of all shapes and sizes are expected to make an appearance.

Naomi Cassidy

SUFFOLK'S first ever Dog Day is not be something to be sniffed at as thousands of pooches of all shapes and sizes are expected to make an appearance.

The region's pet owners are invited to spruce up their Spaniels, beautify their Bassett Hounds and preen their poodles for the new annual charity event which aims to celebrate man's best friend.

This is no ordinary day in the doggie diary as prizes in a range of categories will be given to the top dogs and there will also be plenty of fun activities on offer.

Shauna Lowry, former BBC One Man and His Dog and Animal Hospital presenter, who is currently moving to the area, is expected to open the event on Saturday, August 16, at Helmingham Hall, owned by Lord and Lady Tollemache.

Celebrity judges will be sniffing out the waggiest winners, from the 'Perkiest Pup' to the 'Must Have Mutt', however there is no such thing as a bad dog as all entrants will leave with a doggy bag.

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All the proceeds will go to The Suffolk Foundation, which seeks to improve the lives of people in the county.

Jenny Cook, Suffolk Dog Day chairman, said: “We are thrilled with the high level of support, especially given the current economic climate.

“This will be a fabulous day for all the family. As a person born and brought up in Suffolk, I have a real passion for the county and the Suffolk Foundation is a great way that I and many others can give back to the community. I urge people to get their family and friends together and do their dogged best to help us raise lots of money.”

There will also be demonstrations from The Leonberger Club of Great Britain Water Rescue and Suffolk Constabulary Police dogs, and plenty of stalls and refreshments.

Children's entertainments will include guess the name of the dog, how much is that doggy in the window? and Pin the Tail on the Dog.

The big dog day is supported by The Evening Star. Editor Nigel Pickover said: “These are exciting and ambitious plans by Lord and Lady Tollemache and the Suffolk Foundation. We are delighted to back the idea - which could become one of the great Suffolk days of the year.”

A VIP champagne reception, for those with a golden bone VIP ticket, will be held prior to the official opening at 12.30pm, in the courtyard of Helmingham Hall, which is renowned for its beautiful gardens.

Gates open at 11am when the dog class registration begins.

Tickets cost £4.50 for adults (£5 on the day) and £2.50 for children (£3 on the day). Entry into Helmingham Gardens is included in the price.

There are still some spaces left for stalls if you wish to take part in the day.

To find out more, or to book tickets, visit or call 01473 734125.

- Have you got a good story to tell about your dog? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail

Some of the classes you can enter your dog are:-

- Pure Pooch…Pedigree class

- The Dog From The Block…Mixed breeds

- Designer Dog…With the best outfit or fancy dress

- Must Have Mutt…The dog the judge would most like to take home

- OAPs...Old Age Pooches (more than ten years)

- Perkiest Pup…Under 12 months

- Love me, love my dog…Dog most like its owner