By Jimmy Rhatigan
OVER 2,500 people, more than 1,000 dogs and hounds and a blazing sun.
For pet lovers, Sevenhouses Coursing Grounds at sun-kissed Danesfort had to be a Paradise Found on Sunday.
Aptly, the 21st doggie spectacular founded by local man Rory Dicker proved to be a smash hit, the best ever show day, a brilliant occasion to celebrate a special birthday.
The attendance was a record, the entry of dogs and hounds was the biggest ever and while many areas of Kilkenny and several other local counties in the South East and further afield were well represented, there was also a big contingent from Northern Ireland.
On display at the Rockview Harriers annual sporting dog show in the regional home of coursing were terriers, lurchers, hounds and pets that were judged by a top class team of judges who came from Tyrone, Waterford, Yorkshire, England and South Wales.
Best in show was an Abbeyfeale Harrier called Governor while reserve champion was a local terrier called Toffee, owned by Ray Lawson from Bennettsbridge.
Chief organizer Rory Dicker was delighted with the coming of age event.
He paid tribute to his dedicated team of volunteers and to all who supported the show in any way.
He had special thanks for the committee of Sevenhouses Coursing Club who once more made their excellent facilities available.
Rory attributed the bumper attendance to the exceptional weather and also to the high standard of a show that has won deserved respect over the years as it went from strength to strength.