The 134th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show on Animal Planet and Discovery HD

Strutting their stuff in front of millions of television viewers, a sold-out crowd at Madison Square Garden and countless more online, the award-winning pedigree on display at the 134th ANNUAL WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW will prove they’ve got what it takes to bring home the 2010 title of “Best in Show.” Premiering LIVE Monday, February 15 and Tuesday, February 16 at 8 p.m. ET/9 p.m. PT on Animal Planet – and simulcast on Discovery HD – the 134th ANNUAL WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW promises to bring viewers the real life suspense of a thriller and the drama of a great day-time soap! With 173 different breeds and varieties this year, including Bouviers Des Flandres, Portuguese water dogs and Rhodesian ridgebacks, it will take two days to work through the 2,500 dogs that begin the prestigious canine competition – a.k.a the Super Bowl for dogs! And the man responsible for hosting this year’s event? Hollywood heartthrob, AMERICA’S BEST DANCE CREW host and former DANCING WITH THE STARS contestant, Mario Lopez.

The 134th ANNUAL WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW premieres Feb. 15 and 16 on Animal Planet and Discovery HD.

Trailing the Kentucky Derby by only one year, America’s second-longest continuously-held sporting event – THE WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW – is the undisputed world leader in the sport of showing purebred dogs. With entries from virtually every U.S. state and a number of foreign countries, the race is on for all canine contenders including three breeds newly-recognized by the American Kennel Club who will compete for the first time ever in 2010: the Irish red and white setter in the sporting group, and the Pyrenean shepherd and Norwegian buhund in the herding group.

Following two days of judging and dramatic eliminations, the final countdown will begin with the seven winners in the sporting, hound, working, terrier, toy, non-sporting and herding groups. And when 11 p.m. ET on Tuesday, February 16 rolls around, “Best In Show” judge, Elliott Weiss of Eagle, Idaho, will step into the centre of the ring and crown the Westminster winner as America’s Dog for 2010. Who will be awarded with this year’s coveted title? Tune in for all the action and find out!

In 2009, senior citizens everywhere celebrated the victory of Stump, a wonderful Sussex spaniel that became the oldest dog ever to capture “Best In Show” at the World’s greatest dog show. Stump was 10 years, two months and nine days old – more than two years older than the previous age record holder. Making his win all the more remarkable was the fact that he had nearly died a few years earlier after retiring from the show ring, and that he had not been shown in nearly four years.

The WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW was named after a Manhattan hotel that was popular in 1877. It was at the Westminster hotel’s bar where sporting gentlemen would meet to drink and talk about their shooting accomplishments. Eventually, they formed a club and bought a training area and kennel. They kept their dogs there, hired a trainer and named the club after their favourite watering hole.

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