Uno, a three-year-old beagle made history yesterday, after winning "Best in Show" at the Westminster Kennel Club dog show held in Madison Square Garden, New York. This is the first time in the 132-year history of the competition that a beagle has won the title and the crowd cheered, giving Uno a standing ovation.
The Westminster Kennel Dog Show has been nicknamed "the most important dog beauty pageant" in the world, attracting thousands of competitors from all over the country.
Once in New York, the dogs check into hotels and are bribed with all sorts of goodies to perform well at the show. This includes letting the dog have the bed while the owners sleep on the sofa, to allow the dogs to get their "beauty sleep". The dogs are also given special treats. Some get them only before the big show, so they know its time to perform, while others get it throughout their stay. The biggest treat - a cheesburger from McDonalds (no onions of course!). Pizza topped with chicken and pepperoni is also very popular. And of course to wash it all down there is special malt flavored doggie beer!
Right before the show starts, things get real crazy. Owners are seen putting curlers on dog fur, applying mousse and hairspray to make the fur look "fuller", giving sponge baths to get that last spot off and practicing the tricks that the dog is going to perform.
This year there were 2,627 entries, with more than 169 breeds represented.The dogs are judged in three rounds.The first level of competition is "Best of Breed". A winner from each breed than advances to what is called as "The Group", where dogs are grouped into categories such as Sporting, Hound, Terrier, Toy etc. One winner from each group then advances to the final, where the "Best of Show" is picked.
Uno's competitors this year included two perfect poodles, a top Sealyham terrier, a sleek Weimaraner, a lively Australian shepherd and a sprightly Akita. Uno accepted his victory very graciously by chewing on the microphone of reporters who were trying to interview his owner.
What's next for Uno? - Lots of fame and fortune. First and foremost he will appear on numerous TV shows. Then a traditional visit to New York's famous Sardi's restaurant where he will be provided steak on a silver platter. After that it could be an advertising deal, a movie deal or a TV show...............the possibilities are endless!
Enjoy the video of America's top dog!