Tradition requires that Season's Greetings be expressed until 31 January! Well I'm a traditionalist! Consequently, instead of conveying my very best wishes to all of you, let me tell my warm, sincere and "global" thanks to all those who work hard, constantly and on a daily basis to ensure that our 4-legged friends get the place they deserve in our families and our society!

On another tone, I want to point out how important the development of cynology is within the FCI. Our Office located in Thuin, Belgium, has to adapt and adjust to that reality. I'm proud and very happy to see the works of our building extension come to an end! The FCI will have modern and comfortable facilities to host its Committees and Commissions meetings and will be happy to show its gallery and museum/library to any visitor.

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Yves De Clercq
FCI Executive Director
Knowledge, Crafts and Entertainment at the Lithuanian Winter Shows

In addition to huge number of participants and large variety of dog breeds competing for the Best in Show Winner, the winter shows organised by the Lithuanian Kennel Club featured numerous activities for the youngest show visitors and young people willing to broaden their cynological knowledge. Apart from traditional junior handling competition and the awards of the best junior handlers of the year, the Education Centre to the Lithuanian Kennel Club created a special area for kids, youngsters, young professionals, as well as their families, where all could join purposeful activities or just enjoy their leisure.

Indeed, this time young people were offered a wide range of activities from simple “doggy” drawings and crafts for the smallest to dog sports such as Agility, Obedience and Power dog for those already having some competence in cynology. While the smallest visitors were creating doggy decorations for the Christmas tree, making postcards or simply drawing or colouring pictures, the older ones were involved in educational activities, which is inherent part of our programme. Invited in advance, groups of youngsters from several schools of the capital city of Vilnius enthusiastically joint activities depending on their interests. Safe contact with a dog, ways to avoid dangerous situations, understanding of dog’s body language, liberties and welfare of dogs and peculiarities of “dangerous” breeds – absolutely all topics were followed by hot and enthusiastic discussions, which only proves the relevance of the considered issues.

Cynological activities and education about dogs are inconceivable without participation of man’s best friend. Specially selected, trained and tested dogs not only served as a living example of happy animals so much attached to humans, but also contributed to the general atmosphere in the stand. Safe pleasant contact and communication with a dog in a specially arranged place was much more valued by the visitors than just the opportunity to observe dogs from the side.

Those visiting the stand for the first time were surprised to discover such unconventional activities at the dogs show. Indeed, why do we think it is important to take extra work and responsibility during huge dog events? Mrs Ramune Kazlauskaite, President of the Lithuanian Kennel Club, says: “Our organisation is relatively young, it just recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, we don’t have long cynological tradition and we are only shaping the cynological culture in our country. Therefore, our target groups are enthusiastic, flexible and open to new ideas. We aim at bringing up a new, different, responsible generation of dog lovers, willing to take an active part in cynology, who will make changes and build the future for the benefit of dogs. Various activities for young people at the dog shows is just a small part of what we are doing in pursue of our greatest ambition – creating of a pet-loving country.”

Lithuanian Kennel Club