The wait is over – the 2022 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show is here!
The 146th Westminster Dog Show kicks off on Saturday when nearly 3,500 dogs representing 211 breeds will compete for the coveted title of Best in Show.
Here’s everything you need to know about the multi-day competition.
What exactly is the Westminster Kennel Club dog show?
The Westminster Dog Show is a competition organized by the American Kennel Club that brings together thousands of dogs representing hundreds of breeds from across the country to compete in agility, obedience and conformation competitions.
The purpose of the show is to evaluate breeding stock, and winners are selected based on their ability to contribute and improve the next generation of dogs.
The Westminster Kennel Club, which was formed in the 1870s by a group of dog fans, is the second-oldest continuously held sporting event in the United States, behind only the Kentucky Derby. Think of it as the Super Bowl of the dog world.
Where will it be?
The Westminster Dog Show has been held in New York City from its inception in 1877 until 2020 before taking place at the historic Lyndhurst Estate in Tarrytown, New York last year, making it the first Westminster Dog Show to take place. stand outside. Competition returns to Lyndhurst this year.
It looks fun! When is it and how can I watch?
The Westminster Dog Show starts on Saturday, but the majority of the events (and the most anticipated ones) will air Monday through Wednesday on FOX, FS1, FS2 and the FOX Sports app.
How it works?
All dogs are classified into seven groups for judging: Hound, Toy, Terrier, Herding, Working, Sporting and Non-Sporting. Dogs earn points based on the number of dogs defeated – the more dogs entered, the more points per win.
Dogs are judged on how close they are to a written standard describing the ideal dog in their breed with respect to appearance, movement, temperament, and specific physical traits such as height and weight, coat, colors, the color and shape of the eyes, the shape of the ears. and placement, feet, tail and more.
Then there is a process of elimination. The four dogs that are judged Best in Breed in their respective groups continue to compete in Best in Group, and the winner of each group advances to compete for the grand prize of Best in Show.
What should I know about the events?
Westminster Weekend begins on Saturday with the ninth annual Masters Agility Championship (broadcast Sunday). Hundreds of dogs will take part in two preliminary rounds of standard agility (jumping and weaving), then 50 finalists – 10 from five different size classes – will compete in the final on Saturday evening for the title of Grand Champion at the Agility Masters Championship . Purebred and All-American (mixed breed) dogs are eligible to compete and are judged on time and completion (minus faults) of the course.
Last year, Verb the Border Collie won the 2021 title – which was his second victory in three years.
Competition will resume on Monday, with the Masters Obedience Championship. The first round of competition consists of utility and signaling drills, but the real action comes in the finals when all teams perform a six-minute routine to show off their skills in the obedience range.
Breed judging will take place on Monday and Tuesday, followed by Junior Showmanship Finals and Group Judging on Wednesday. The seven group winners will battle it out for Best in Show on Wednesday night.
What is the TV program?
Masters Agility Championship Finals, 12:30-3 p.m. ET (FOX)
Breed Judges and Masters Obedience Championship, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET (FS2)
Breed judging and junior presentation preliminaries, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET (FS2)
Group judging: hunting, toy, non-sporting and herding groups, 7:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. ET (FS1)
Breed judging and junior presentation preliminaries, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET (FS2)
Junior Presentation Final, 7-7:30 p.m. ET (FS1)
Group judging: Sport, Working and Terrier groups, followed by Best in Show, 7:30-11:00 p.m. ET (FS1)
FOX Deportes will provide Spanish language coverage of the competition.
What dogs to look out for this year?
There are two new breeds making their Westminster Dog Show debut this year: the Mudi, a versatile medium-sized farm dog from Hungary, originally bred to herd the most stubborn sheep and cattle, and the Russian Toy, a small square construction that was once a favorite. race of the Russian aristocracy.
The most represented dogs will be Golden Retrievers (70), Labrador Retrievers (49) and Pugs (46).
Who won last year?
The 2021 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show was held June 12-13 at Lyndhurst Estate.
Last year’s seven finalists were Bourbon the Whippet, Mathew the French Bulldog, Connor the Old English Shepherd, Wasabi the Pekingese, Jade the German Shorthaired Pointer, Striker the Samoyed and Boy the West Highland White Terrier.
However, it was Toy Group’s Wasabi the Pekingese who beat out 2,499 other dogs and 208 breeds (and 44 international entries!) for the coveted WKC ribbon and Best in Show title. It was the fifth overall victory for the breed and the 10th for the Toy Group.
What are some other fun facts about the Westminster Dog Show?
The Terrier group has won the most (47 times), with the most recent winner being a Wire Fox Terrier in 2019, followed by the Sporting group (20). The Herding group has only won twice, the most recent being a German Shepherd in 2017. The Wire Fox Terrier breed has the most individual wins (15).
In Westminster history, only seven dogs have won the Best in Show award twice, including the Smooth Fox Terrier Warren Remedy, who won the grand prize three times in a row between 1907 and 1909.
Neither Golden Retrievers nor Labrador Retrievers have ever won the title of Best in Show, although they are still two of the most listed breeds.
The United States produced the most winners of all time (64), followed by the United Kingdom (37) and Canada (six), while Belgium, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands have only one Best in Show victory each.
There were 74 male and 40 female winners.
The oldest dog to win Best in Show was a Sussex Spaniel named Stump, who was 10 years old in 2009, and the youngest dog to win was a Rough Collie named Laund Loyalty of Bellhaven, who was just 9 months old in 1929. Laund Loyalty of Bellhaven is also the only collie breed to win Best in Show at Westminster.
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