Suffolk’s most loved fixture in the County calendar will see crowds of over 6,000 people and their pooches turning up this weekend for furry frolicks on the stunning Helmingham Hall estate. Sponsored by Skinner’s Pet Foods, the event has been raising money for over a decade, created and run by a loyal band of Suffolk Community Foundation volunteers. Every penny raised, over £500,000 so far, has helped over 250 charities over the years, with over 145,000 vulnerable Suffolk people being supported right across Suffolk.
‘The team have been working really hard all year to bring a new fresh and cool look to our very special day. We have a tried and tested formula that everyone loves, but there will be a few surprises on the day too and a brand-new dog cooling zone, just to make sure we can deal with warmer weather. We are all set!’ says Top Dog Chairman and Volunteer Richard Cooper.
We take a look at what there is to look forward to this year, why Suffolk people love it so much, and what organisers are doing to keep dogs (and humans) nice and cool!
A SPRINKLE OF STARDUST….
The stardust will be sprinkled by Blue Peter and Crufts broadcasting legend Peter Purves, former About Anglia presenter and novelist Christine Webber, and Suffolk’s very own Royal Ballet Star Gary Avis MBE, appearing as presenters and special guest judges in the Helmingham and Suffolk Rings!
KEEP IT COOL IN OUR ‘DOGGY COOLING ZONE’
Keeping dogs (and humans) cool, safe and hydrated is always at the forefront of our minds. While temperatures are predicted to be perfect on Sunday, we have plenty of measures in place to ensure our canine companions can enjoy themselves without becoming too hot. Come along to our doggy cooling zone, where you’ll find a a giant misting station, doggy paddling pools and plenty of water bowls. What’s more, the SDD team will be ‘hot’ – no pun intended! – on topping up water bowls around site. And for toasty humans, remember to slather on the suncream and stay hydrated by picking up a cold beverage in our catering village!
MEET THE SUFFOLK DOG DAY SUPERSTAR
Keep your eyes peeled for a glimpse of our Suffolk Dog Day Superstar Wilson, along with the four furry runners up in the competition, Darcie, Simba, Thunder and Willow! They will be making an appearance in the Helmingham Ring at 1pm.
SUFFOLK SUPER SIX BREED PARADES
If you own one of our Suffolk Super Six, don’t forget to come along to the breed parade to allow them to strut their stuff in the ring! Entry to the breed parades is £2 (every penny of which will go to support Suffolk charities), and your dog will receive their very own rosette to parade in!
WIN PRIZES IN FUN DOGGY CLASSES!
From Bad Hair Day to fancy dress and even ‘I want that one!’ – the pooch our judges would most like to take home, there’s plenty of fun-filled classes to get involved in during the day! Entry to a show class is £3 (every penny of which will go to support Suffolk charities).
With Lowestoft Dog Display team, a brand new demo ring featuring East Anglian Search & Rescue Dogs, a special Drug Detection display, talk from Skinner’s canine nutritionist Dr Jacqueline Boyd, canine massage specialist Angela Day and a lesson in dog health and grooming by Easton and Otley College – this year’s Suffolk Dog Day is bursting with plenty of talks and demonstrations to get tails wagging!
GRAB A BITE TO EAT IN OUR CATERING VILLAGE…
Sizzling burgers, hot dogs, fish & chips, hearty curries, doughnuts, ice cream and refreshing drinks from Hopsters and Smashing Wines — it’s safe to say our catering village is bursting with tasty refreshments to cover all your needs throughout the day! And central to this, you will find Suffolk Dog Day’s famous Tea Tent kindly supported by Woodbridge School, where you will be served a perfect cup of tea, accompanied by a delicious slice of cake!
THINGS TO REMEMBER…
🐾Gates open at 10am, with classes beginning at 10.45am.
🐾Tickets can be bought at the entrance gates. £10 for adults, £5 for children and family tickets £25. CASH ONLY PLEASE
🐾Your ticket includes a glossy event brochure and free entry into the award winning gardens at Helmingham Hall
🐾 Parking is free
🐾 All dogs MUST be kept on leads at all times
🐾 Please pick up your pooch’s poo – there are bins on site
🐾 Cuddle as many dogs as humanly possible
🐾 Don’t forget to join in the fun on social media using #SuffolkDogDay!
Every penny you spend on entrants, breed parades and classes will be used to support local charities and community groups in Suffolk. To find out more about how the money is spent, click here.