New York City now has a new top dog.
At the 147th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, held on Tuesday at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Buddy Holly the Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen (pronounced peh-TEE’ bah-SAY’ grihf-FAHN’ vahn-DAY’-ahn) took home the Best in Show award, besting over 3,000 dogs of more than 200 different breeds.
The choice of Buddy Holly changed history. In the 147-year history of Westminster, he is the only Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen (PBGV) to ever win Best in Show. After Trumpet the Bloodhound became the first Bloodhood to win Best in Show honours last year, a dog from the hound breed has now won the gold-and-purple ribbon for the second consecutive year.
“I never thought a PBGV would do this,” owner and handler Janice Hayes remarked. “Buddy Holly is a show dog at its finest. Nothing annoys him. He adores every camera. He is hard-headed, unyielding, cheerful, and moves with such ease that he is the epitome of what a PBGV should be. It is really bizarre, and we are very proud of him.
Each of the seven purebred dog breed groups—hound, toy, non-sporting, sporting, herding, working, and terrier—wins Best in Breed, followed by Best in Show, before the Best in Show winner is chosen.
Breeder and handler Elizabeth Sweigart of Pennsylvania made the decision as the winner of the Best in Show competition. Rummie the Pekingese received the Reserve Best in Show award from Sweigart as the runner-up.
Winston the French Bulldog (Non-sporting), Ribbon the Australian Shepherd (Herding), Cider the English Setter (Sporting), Monty the Giant Schnauzer (Working), and Trouble the American Staffordshire Terrier (Terrier) were the other finalists in addition to Buddy Holly the PBGV (Hound) and Rummie the Pekingese (Toy).
Giant Schnauzer, Australian Shepherd, American Staffordshire Terrier, and French Bulldog are the only four of those breeds who have never taken home the Best In Show trophy.
The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show is the second-oldest continually running sporting event in the United States, after only the Kentucky Derby. This year’s event was held at the same sports complex where the annual U.S. Open tennis tournament is held. From 1877 to 2020, Westminster was hosted at Madison Square Garden in New York City, but due to the coronavirus pandemic, it was transferred in 2021 and 2022 to the Lyndhurst Estate in Tarrytown, New York.