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Hound wins Westminster

Trumpet beats out NFL player’s bulldog by JENNIFER PELTZ Associated Press | June 23, 2022 at 4:02 a.m.
Heather Helmer puts Trumpet through his paces Wednesday at the Best in Show competition at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in Tarrytown, N.Y. More photos at arkansasonline.com/623dogshow/. (AP/Frank Franklin II)


TARRYTOWN, N.Y. -- Now this hound has something to toot his horn about.

A bloodhound named Trumpet won the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show on Wednesday night.

Trumpet beat a French bulldog, a German shepherd, a Maltese, an English setter, a Samoyed and a Lakeland terrier to take the trophy.

"I am so excited for Trumpet," said handler Heather Helmer, who co-owns and bred the 4-year-old.

Trumpet became the first bloodhound to win Westminster.

Winston, a French bulldog co-owned by NFL defensive lineman Morgan Fox, took second in the nation's most prestigious dog show.

The competition drew more than 3,000 purebred dogs, ranging from affenpinschers to Yorkshire terriers. The goal is to crown the dog that most represents the ideal for its breed.

Usually held in winter at New York City's Madison Square Garden, the show moved to the suburban Lyndhurst estate last year and this year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Westminster is often described as the Super Bowl of U.S. dog shows, and Winston aimed to make it so for Fox, a defensive lineman who was just signed by the Los Angeles Chargers and has played for the Los Angeles Rams and the Carolina Panthers.

Before the finals, Fox said he was "ecstatic" when Winston made it there.

"He's basically a superstar," Fox said by phone Wednesday.

The dog came his way from his grandmother, Sandy Fox, who bred and shown Frenchies for years. Morgan Fox grew up with one and says that as he watched Winston mature, he knew the dog was a winner in both appearance and character.

"He's a joy to be around," Fox said. "He always walks around with as much of a smile on his face as a dog can have."

Winston, currently the top-ranked dog in the country, faced Striker, a Samoyed that also made the finals last year; River, a big-winning German shepherd, and Trumpet, a bloodhound descended from the 2014 winner of another major show, the Thanksgiving-season National Dog Show.

After topping the canine rankings last year, Striker has lately been hitting a few dog shows "to keep his head in the game," said handler Laura King.

While he was quiet in the ring, an Alaskan Malamute provided a yowling soundtrack for a semifinal round featuring the Samoyed and other breeds classified as working dogs.

Then there are MM the Lakeland terrier -- terriers have won many times at Westminster -- and a Maltese that clearly is aiming for stardom: Her name is Hollywood.

But the belle of the ball could be an English setter. Belle made the finals after being squired around the ring by one of her breeders and owners, Amanda Ciaravino -- a feat at an event where many top contenders are accompanied by full-time, career handlers.

"It's amazing," an emotional Ciaravino said. "I'm so proud of her."



 Gallery: 146th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show



Print Headline: Hound wins Westminster

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