A dog gets ready to compete in the Sporting group at the 143rd Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York City, New York, U.S., February 12, 2019. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
NEW YORK (Reuters) – A wire fox terrier won “Best in Show” at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York on Tuesday, emerging as the top dog among nearly 3,000 barking, tail-wagging competitors.
The animal, named King, captured the most coveted prize at the two-day event at Madison Square Garden, besting challengers from all 50 U.S. states and 14 countries. The competition drew 2,800 dogs from 203 breeds and varieties.
“Tonight is … I can’t even describe it,” said an emotional Gabriel Rangel, King’s handler, on the floor of Madison Square Garden.
“After you win this magnificent show there’s really nothing else to win. He should be running around in a field of grass,” Rangel said moments after the wire fox terrier won the coveted top prize.
He won the terrier group and claimed the top trophy over finalists from five other groups. The winner of the non-sporting canine group, a schipperke, was ruled ineligible before the “Best in Show” competition began due to ownership eligibility requirements.
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The Westminster Kennel Club’s show is the second oldest U.S. sporting event, behind only the Kentucky Derby horse race.
Reporting by Maria Caspani; editing by Brendan O’Brien and Richard Pullin