Posted 4 months ago ago
After seemingly endless months of eat, dog walk, sleep, repeat, things are slowly returning to normal.
With the easing of restrictions looking like we could have a summer of fun to look forward to, one doggy-related event we can’t wait for is Dogstival.
Described as ‘Glastonbury with the bark-factor’, Dogstival 2021 will take place on Saturday and Sunday June 5 and 6 in the gorgeous surroundings of Burley Park in the New Forest.
It’s set to be a brilliant and deserved celebration of our beloved furry friends and promises a weekend dedicated to a dog’s enjoyment, fun, taste buds and more.
And for all the lockdown pooches, it's the perfect opportunity to get out there and start ‘petworking’ with their fellow dog-kind.
So what can you expect from this year’s Dogstival?
Here are some of activities on the bill at this year’s must-attend dog festival.
New for 2021, Dogstival gives Parkour a little twist to create an adventure playground that will put dogs and owners through their paces, at whatever speed and challenge they choose.
With your dog in tow, of course there will be lots of activities that your four-legged friends can get involved with.
Activities include canicross (cross country running with dogs), flyball, agility and fun scent demo challenges, as well as the giant K9 dog diving pool for those who prefer their fun in water.
Canine IQ test
Ever wondered if your pet is a doggy genius? Well now you can find out.
There’ll be a fun canine IQ test to reveal exactly how smart your dog is.
A live cooking stage will focus on canine nutrition and have lips smacking and tongues drooling. At least, your dogs will be drooling.
Live talks and demonstrations
This Morning’s Vet Dr Scott Miller will lead the pack on the Dog House Stage, with talks and demonstrations on keeping a furry friend in tip-top health.
You’ll also get insight and tips from the Dog House Behaviour Stage, which this year will have a big focus on puppies and first-time dog owners, as a nod to all dogs that have arrived during lockdown.
Hosted by dog training and behaviourist Natalie Light, The Behaviourist Lounge will offer a more intimate and personalised insight into common behaviour issues, along with tips on potential fixes
Pop-up vet and physio drop-in centres
Need some advice about your dog? Want to get them looked at while at the festival?
Attendees will have access to vets with drop-in centres positioned throughout the showground. You’ll be able to get one-on-one feedback for your dog.
Dogstival’s Main Arena is set to be as big a draw as ever, with demonstrations from acclaimed gundog expert Sam Thatcher, Little Nippers and Lurchers and Hawk racing.
It will also feature thrilling displays from Hampshire Fire and Rescue ‘Arson Task Force’ Dog Team, a flyball tournament with leading teams from across the south taking part, as well as fun quizzes and an old-fashioned sports day where owners can compete with their dogs to win prizes.
Live music and shopping
For general amusement, shopping and keeping tummies happy, there’ll also be live music, more than 140 independent stalls selling every doggy delicacy or bit of kit imaginable and locally sourced food and drink, catering for all tastes or dietary requirements.
Dogstival organiser Richard Nowell says: “We can't wait for June to arrive and are excitedly putting together a show programme that celebrates the coming together of those four-legged friends, who have been the best therapy this past year!
“We’re a team of passionate dog lovers and every little feature and activity we plan has one thing at the heart of it – a dog’s delight – and we’re counting down the days until we can get together with friends old and new in our beautiful home at Burley Park.”
What else do I need to know?
Paying forward the fun, a visit to Dogstival will support a range of charities including The Dogs Trust, Service Dogs UK, Pets As Therapy and Support Dogs For Epilepsy & Autism, with £5 entry to the Fun Dog Show and any donations via Dogstival’s free show programme, split equally between the causes.
Dogstival’s organisers will monitor government guidelines and work closely with the local authorities to ensure an event that is safe and compliant.
Burley Park offers acres of space to allow easy social distancing and extra hygiene measures such as multiple hand sanitiser stations throughout and on-site cleaning teams will be in place throughout the event.
Tickets are priced £13.90 for adults and £8 for children over the age of six. Concessions are also available.
For more information and tickets, visit Dogstival.co.uk.