New York’s Westminster Dog Show is no stranger to hullabaloo, but the choice of Best in Show has caused more consternation this year than ever
By, 15 Feb 2019
In the final moments of the 143rd Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show winners of each of the Groups lined up for a final inspection before the Best in Show winner was announced.
This year Peter Green (winner of more ‘Best in Shows’ than any handler) judged the finalists.
But Green’s choice of wire fox terrier ‘King’ shocked many observers at home and in the arena. As far as most were concerned, a long-haired dachshund called Burns was far more deserving of the award. In fact Burns was pipped to be Best in Show after already being announced as top dog of his Hound group.
Tweeps were on the whole disparaging about the result:
@theRealMSG wrote: ‘Welp. That was disappointing. I can’t believe he didn’t choose that daschund. They’re not even my breed but even I could see that was the best dog out there tonight. Unreal.’
@Fortitude1913 wrote: ‘Nooooooo! I saw the early rounds & that long hair daschund was everything. He didn’t win?!’
@Erik_Kenney wrote: ‘Honestly, these refs are getting out of control. Every sport is rigged. The dachshund was robbed.’
One member of the public even suggested that Green had acted biasedly.
@bleusharque wrote: ‘Just finished watching the Westminster Dog Show. The venerable Best In Show judge was a wire haired terrier expert. And GUESS WHAT? The wire haired terrier wins Best of Show.’
Whether or not Green’s choice of King for Best in Show was influenced by subjectivity may never be known. But on this occasion popular opinion very much favoured the underdog.
The Guardian covered the event and was similarly surprised: ‘A bit of a tepid reaction from the crowd as this building was ready to explode if either Burns or Bean was named the winner. Instead it’s King, who becomes the 15th Wire Fox Terrier to win the top prize. That’s most of any breed … by far.’