Spryte was once a rescue dog nobody wanted to adopt, but with some love and training, he is now a champion dog show winner that is about to make his television debut.
The Tenterfield terrier spent time in Rockhampton’s Capricorn Animal Aid where volunteers tried to place him in several foster homes, but his high energy needs and naughty behaviour saw him returned – sometimes within 24 hours.
When dog trainer Alexandria Bailey, from Beaudesert, offered to look after the little dog for a month of respite care she fell in love.
Under Ms Bailey’s guidance, Spryte has been crowned the Queensland state champion in the masters competition for his height two years in a row.
Ms Bailey first twigged the terrier would be a strong competitor when she noticed him jumping to waist height.
“I saw him and thought, ‘Wow, what a little dog … that little guy’s got spring, he’s very slim, very well put together, nice long legs for a little dog and he had a keen attention and focus,” she said.
“He’s a hell of a lot of fun.”
‘We’re so proud’
Spryte first came into foster care at Capricorn Animal Aid after being picked up by the local animal shelter
“He was a boisterous little fella … he was quite active and just full of beans,” volunteer Katina Kilpatrick said.
Ms Kilpatrick said she hoped Spryte’s efforts inspired other people to adopt animals.
“When we see these happy tales come through [about Spryte], especially when he’s competing against dogs from all around the country – we’re so proud.”
Next stop Hollywood
Not only is Spryte winning championships, the little dog is also starring in the upcoming Netflix series Irreverent.
The series, about a drug heist gone wrong, was filmed at Mission Beach.
Ms Bailey says for Spryte the show is much less sinister.
“Spryte’s a companion to a young lad in the movie, and just hangs out with his young mate on the beach with his makeshift motorbike and he rides around,” Ms Bailey said.
“The cast and crew had a great time playing with him when he wasn’t being on set filming.”
Spryte is also a registered assistance dog and goes with Ms Bailey while she works with her NDIS clients.
“He’s got a very diverse life, however, most of the time he’s just sleeping at my feet or in his little crate … or basking out in the sunshine,” she said.
A champion ‘inside every puppy’
Ms Bailey has five rescue dogs in her dog sports team, and each one has won at least one championship in four different disciplines, such as agility and tracking.
“For me, it’s all very lovely to have all that bling, the paper, the ribbons, the sashes and those awards and I think it’s great to be able to work towards those,” she said.
“However, I personally believe that there’s a champion dog inside every puppy and it’s our responsibility as trainers to identify where that dog’s best talents are … and direct them towards that.”