- America’s top dog to be crowned on night two in New York
- Tweet Bryan at @BryanAGraham or email him
- Pooch pizzas and pet psychics: life as a dog concierge at Westminster
- 2019 Westminster Kennel Club dog show – in pictures
Next up is a trio of retrievers: the Chesapeake Bay, the Curly-Coated and the Flat-Coated. None of the three have ever been named Best in Show despite having been entered in the competition since 1877, 1926 and 1926, respectively (though a Flat-Coated Retriever did make the Best in Show finals once in 2001).
The first five to show are the Brittany, Lagotti Romagnoli, Pointer and German Shorthaired Pointer and German Wirehaired Pointer. The German Shorthaired Pointer has been entered in the competition since 1935, three times winning Best in Show (in 1974, 2005 and 2016).
Strike the above! Colton the Schipperke has been ruled ineligible due to an ownership conflict with Peter Green, the Best in Show judge. This is not entriely unusual in the dog show world, though it’s rare at this level. It doesn’t take away from Colton’s Best of Breed or Best of Group win, but he won’t be advancing to the final round tonight. That means only six dogs will be competing for Best in Show later tonight rather than the usual seven.
First up tonight is the Sporting Group. They will be judged by Mr Douglas Johnson of Bloomington, Indiana. This group has produced a total of 20 Best in Show winners through the years – second only to the Terrier group (46) – most recently the German shorthand pointer named CJ in 2016.
Here’s what the American Kennel Club has to say about the Sporting Group:
Naturally active and alert, Sporting dogs make likeable, well-rounded companions. Members of the Group include pointers, retrievers, setters and spaniels. Remarkable for their instincts in water and woods, many of these breeds actively continue to participate in hunting and other field activities. Potential owners of Sporting dogs need to realize that most require regular, invigorating exercise.
There’s already a bit of history in the offing tonight. Specifically, none of the four breeds that have advanced to the final seven have ever won Best in Show.
Dachshunds, for all their popularity, have yet to bring home the top prize in the 142 years they’ve entered. Burns, the winningest longhaired dachshund in history, is only the second of his breed to even win the Hound group. The other? His great-grandfather Ben in 1998.
Four of the seven group winners who will compete for the title of Best in Show were decided on Monday night. The remaining three groups (Sporting, Working and Terrier) will be judged tonight in advance of the final round.
Burns the Longhaired Dachshund won the Hound group …
Hello and welcome to New York for the final night of Westminster! We’re ringside at Madison Square Garden for the 143rd edition of the nation’s most prestigious dog show, the oldest continuously held sporting event in the United States after the Kentucky Derby, and there’s an unmistakable electricity in the air as the title of America’s top dog will be chosen from the nearly 2,800 canines from 203 different breeds and varieties hailing from all 50 states and 14 other countries, including Russia, Mexico, Brazil, Canada and Japan.
Tonight one will emerge from the pack. Last year it was Flynn, the Bichon Frise. Who will bring home the hardware in 2019?
Bryan will be here shortly. While you wait, here’s his story on the Hotel Pennsylvania, the 100-year-old landmark across the street from Madison Square Garden which becomes a veritable hotel for dogs during Westminster week.