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15 March 2017

Find out how much we love dogs in the UK

One of the things British people are famous for is loving dogs. You can see it for yourself at this time of year, when the Crufts dog show brings animals from all over the UK and the rest of the world for four days of competition.

This year, 160,000 people came to Birmingham to see the show, with dogs entered from 56 different countries. There are lots of different competitions in Crufts, including the dog which is most obedient, the dog which moves best, and dogs which move to music.

The most famous bit of Crufts are the competitions for the best looking dogs, for "pedigree" dogs. This means that the parents and grandparents of each dog have been carefully chosen to make sure they are perfect examples of their type of dog.

There are individual competitions for each different kind of dog, and each one has a winner, which goes through to the "best in show" final. The overall Best In Show winner is the dog which is closest to the judges' idea of perfection for that type of animal.

This year's Best in Show was an American Cocker Spaniel. This type of dog was created for hunting, but lots of people joked that it took 90 minutes to blow dry its hair, and it would not be good if it got muddy. The runner-up was a miniature poodle.

The latest fashion craze – for under 11s

Have you ever head of a JoJo bow? It is a ribbon, tied in a huge bow, which young girls like to wear on top of their heads.

The bows have been made popular by an American 13-year-old dancer called JoJo Siwa, who is a US YouTube and TV star. She had more than two million Instagram followers, and became famous after appearing on a US show called Dance Moms.

JoJo wears a big bow on top of her head, and the bows are being sold in UK shops appealing to young girls. But now the bows are being banned by lots of schools, because teachers say they are distracting children from their lessons.

Harry Potter play breaks records

The Harry Potter films have ended, but the story goes on as two plays on stage in London. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child tells the story of Harry, Hermione and Ron sending their children off to Hogwarts school, and what happens next. There is a big surprise in the show (which is in two parts) and audiences are given badges as they leave asking them to Keep the Secrets.

What has surprised lots of people is that the plays are really good. Now they have been nominated for the UK's top theatre awards, the Oliviers. They have been nominated in 11 different categories, which is more than any play before. One theatre expert says he expects Harry Potter to run in London for many years.

Who's going to be Who?

Deciding which actor will be the next Dr Who is big news, and lots of bets have been placed on different names. But bets have now been stopped on one actor, because so many were placed in a short space of time. This might mean that the people placing the bets have some information.

The actor is called Kris Marshall. Outside the UK, he is probably only known for his role in the film Love Actually. Here, he is recognised from telephone advertisements and a TV comedy.

Who else are people betting on? Tilda Swinton is at the top of the list, followed by Olivia Colman, Maxine Peake, Ben Whishaw and Richard Ayoade.

The current Doctor, Peter Capaldi, is in one last series which starts in the UK next month.

By the way, if you like Love Actually (which has been voted the UK's favourite Christmas film) and you are in the UK, you need to watch TV this Friday. There is a big charity TV programme on called Comic Relief and as part of that, there is an "update" of Love Actually where we find out what happened to some of the main characters 14 years later. Hugh Grant will play the Prime Minister again – and dance again.

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