Talent show star knows the pooch's limits

Ashleigh Butler has defended dog-dancing after criticism from the Kennel Club.

The Britain’s Got Talent winner adores pet pooch Pudsey and the pair’s amazing routines wowed the judges and viewers alike.

The teenager would hate anyone to think that the training techniques she uses are cruel.

I love the Kennel Club and they always have a dog’s interests at heart,’ says Ashleigh, 17.

But what they have said about dog-dancing is nonsense – in a way. Yes, it is true that some tricks that Pudsey does are unnatural and, yes, they are extreme – but it doesn’t mean I am being cruel or that he’s not enjoying himself.

I can read him like a book. If he doesn’t want to do something then I can tell.’

The Kennel Club, which is one of the biggest organisations in canine health and welfare, has outlawed some ‘extreme’ dog-dancing stunts and Ashleigh admits that Pudsey’s moves take many years to develop safely.

‘You can’t start training dogs until they are 12 months old and full grown,’ she tells The Sun. ‘When dogs are puppies I NEVER put them on their back legs or get them to do any jumping because they are still growing and it could affect growth.

It took Pudsey three years to be able to walk on his back legs.

Some of the simplest ones are the hardest to teach. When Pudsey puts his paws on my feet it looks simple but it took us three months of training to do.’

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Anna Francis