Crufts 2023 Best In Show: Which Breed Will Take Home The Top Award

Thousands of dogs over the fours days of competition have been whittled down to seven group show champions.

The world famous dog show Crufts, which began back in 1891, will crown its Best in Show on Sunday March 12 after deciding the Utility and Toy breed champions earlier in the day.

While the Gundog, Pastoral, Working, Terrier and Hound titles have been decided there has been plenty of choice in all of the categories.

Leading the field with the largest individual breed entry is the great family favourite, the Labrador Retriever, with an entry of 537 dogs.

This is just ahead of the 2022 frontrunner the Golden Retriever (491).

The following breeds received 200 or more entries: Cocker Spaniel (362), Flat Coated Retriever (335), Irish Setter (290), Border Terrier (251), Rhodesian Ridgeback (251), Bearded Collie (235), Shetland Sheepdog (230), Beagle (224), Bulldog (223), French Bulldog (213), Pug (207) and Pointer (205).

In contrast, the Komondor and the Swedish Lapphund have drawn just one entry apiece.

Despite the number of entries their can be only one from each of the groups that make it to the Beat in Show.

The most popular entries in each group by breed are:

  • Gundog: Labrador Retriever – 537
  • Working: Newfoundland – 174
  • Pastoral: Border Collie – 291
  • Terrier: Staffordshire Bull Terrier – 349
  • Hound: Whippet – 400
  • Utility: Dalmatian – 237
  • Toy: Cavalier King Charles Spaniel – 260

Five of the seven contenders have been selected but who will follow the first Best in Show, a Greyhound or the record holding Cocker Spaniel.

Who has won the most Best in Show titles, with seven wins, followed by the Irish Setter, Poodle and Welsh Terrier which have won on four occasions each.

Gundog Group Winner

Orca, a Lagotto Romangnolo from Croatia, and her handler Javier Gonzalez Mendikote won the Gundog group title at Crufts 2023 qualifying them for one of just seven places in the Best in Show final

Proud handler Javier Gonzalez Mendikote said: “It is absolutely amazing, it is such a pleasure to win on the famous green carpet. Orca is such a happy dog, she is always wagging her tail and she made my part in this easy. We are very excited for Best in Show.”

Working Group Winner

Archie, a Dobermann from Chichester, West Sussex, and his owner Mandy Everley, won the Working group title at Crufts 2023

Proud owner Mandy, who is also a Kennel Club Assured Breeder said: “I am feeling overwhelmed, I’ve got no words to be quite honest. I have been showing this breed for 37 years, following in the footsteps of my mum who passed away, and I really felt that she was there with me today, so it’s very special. 

“Archie is such a lovely dog to live with. He’s very talkative, he loves his cuddles – I am just so proud of him, I am only a small breeder and wasn’t expecting this today, so it is a dream come true.”

Pastoral Group Winners

Delia, an Old English Sheepdog from Italy, and her handler, breeder and co-owner Matteo Autolitano, won the Pastoral group title

Proud handler Matteo said: “Delia comes from a pedigree of winners, she is such a great dog, and this really means a lot to us.

“She loves everybody and just enjoys life. She lives by the sea, and when she is not showing she really loves swimming. This has been such a wonderful experience for us today and we can’t wait for Best in Show on Sunday!”

Terrier Group Winner

Blanca, a Wire Fox Terrier from Germany, and her handler Juraj Sokolic, from Croatia, won the Terrier group title

Proud handler Juraj said: “I am really delighted, she is such a lovely dog, at home as well as in the ring.

“We haven’t shown her much, she’s just starting out really, so we are really happy with this result.”

Hound Group Winner

Paris, an Irish Wolfhound from Warrington, Cheshire, and owner Chris Amoo, won the Hound group title

Proud owner Chris said: “We bred Paris and he is a very special dog – the type of dog that is one in a million. We are so proud of him!

“When the judge points to you, you can’t really believe it and it only starts to sink in when you are doing your lap of honour. I won Best in Show here at Crufts 36 years ago, and I just can’t stop smiling!

“I’ve never lost my passion or enthusiasm for this hobby, after all these years – I don’t take holidays because for me, showing dogs, that is my pleasure.”

The Best in Show will be crown live on Channel 4 with the show starting at 7pm (19:00).