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Pic of the week: Hot under collar in quest to be top dog

Amid the hurly burly, a moment of quiet contemplation for a potential Best in Show. Preparing for their moment in the spotlight - not so much as a dog hair out of place - sits a Bernese Mountain Dog one of the four breeds of Sennenhund-type dogs from the Swiss Alps.

Every dog has its day, as the saying goes, and no more so than at Crufts.

The annual four-day event is now well under way in Birmingham and amid the pomp and pageantry which has brought canine competitors and pooch pamperers to its hallowed halls since 1891 it's easy to forget that at its heart is one of the oldest man-animal relationships.

From hunting and gathering, to searching and securing, the bond between man and dog speaks of a time in our mutual past when relationships were based as much on need as companionship.

Modern trends have seen a change in that dynamic, with many types of dog bred as fashion accessories.

As ridiculous as the pom-pommed hair and garish ribbons may seem to some tastes, however, the love and care which goes into raising a dog, not to mention the financial outlay over its life in competition, cannot be questioned.

Costly as it may be in terms of time and money, sometimes you just can't put a price on having a best friend for life.

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