Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show: Puli Conrad wins the herding group
Conrad, whose full name is Ch. Cordmaker Field Of Dreams, is owned by Susan Huebner and Jackie Beaudoin and handled by Linda Pitts. He's an example of a corded puli; pulik (the proper way to refer to more than one puli) can also be shown with brushed coats.
Pitts told USA Today that this year's Westminster will be Conrad's last dog show, after which he'll become a pampered retiree.
A puli has never won Best in Show at Westminster, and Pitts says she certainly won't be heartbroken if Conrad doesn't break that streak. "Going best in show would just be extra credit," she told the New York Times. "No puli has ever won back-to-back groups in Westminster, and only one other puli has won the group. He's done everything we've asked."
Conrad beat a male Belgian sheepdog named Ch. Uri De Beauvoir, a male bearded collie named Ch. Tolkien Raintree Mister Baggins and a female German shepherd dog named Ch. Kridler's Nutmeg V Signature to win the herding group.
Only one member of the herding group, a German shepherd, has won Best in Show at Westminster, but that's partly because the group is the American Kennel Club's newest. Members of the herding group were once classified in the working group, but the two groups were separated in 1983.
Conrad competes for the Best in Show award Tuesday night against a whippet, a toy poodle, a French bulldog, [Spoiler Alert: We're about to name the winners of the sporting and working groups, which haven't yet aired on the west coast yet] a brittany, a Doberman pinscher and the as-yet-unknown winner of the terrier group.
-- Lindsay Barnett
Photo: Henny Ray Abrams / Associated Press