Beating the Odds: Locals Win Best of Breed at Westminster
Odds are that a first-time dog handler doesn't start his career by winning Best of Breed at the prestigious Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. But then again, never underestimate a competitor who is accustomed to bringing home blue ribbons with large four-legged animals.
Three-day eventer Will Faudree, of Aberdeen, beat the odds his first time handling a show dog and won the Best of Breed honor with a Yorkshire terrier aptly named Legacy's Beat the Odds.
Faudree handled the dog for owners Kirk Mosing and Joe and Sharon Misner at the 134th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show held at Madison Square Garden in New York City Feb. 15-16.
Faudree made the cut to compete for Best of Group, along with dogs owned by local show veterans Beth and Carol Dowd and breeder Jane Hammett, whose dogs also earned Best of Breed awards.
Beth and Carol Dowd won the Best in Show award at last year's Westminster Dog Show with a Sussex spaniel named Stump. They didn't win Best in Show two years in a row, but they did win a Best of Breed honor with a 4-year-old Norwegian elkhound named Vin-Melca's Wells Fargo.
"Anytime you go and win there and win anything, it is special," said Carol Dowd. "It's only open to champion dogs by invitation who were the top of their breed the year before. It is limited to 2,400 dogs."
"Wells" is a dog Beth and Carol Dowd co-own with Cecelia Ruggles, of Connecticut.
A local Shetland sheepdog breeder, Hammett also won a Best of Breed in the Shetland sheepdog group with Shadow Hill's Star Chaser, a 7-year old bitch bred and owned by Hammett and Don Bright.
This year the Best of Show went to a Scottie named Sadie.
"She is a nice dog, and she's done really well," said Carol Dowd, who started showing dogs in 1990. "Sadie is very cute."
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