Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show: Toy poodle Walker wins toy group
A 3-year-old male toy poodle named Walker won the toy group at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, the most prestigious show in the U.S., on Monday night.
Walker, whose full name is Ch. Smash JP Moon Walk, is owned by Ron Scott and Debbie Burke. He may be tiny, but he casts a long shadow in the dog-show ring: He's won more than 30 Best in Show awards and was the top-winning toy dog in the country last year. (He even has his own website, which is lovingly maintained and chock-full of "candid" shots of him cavorting in a grassy area while still managing to keep his impeccably coiffed continental clip neat and unmussed.)
Walker's a talented show dog, sure, but he has an Achilles' heel in the show ring, USA Today reports: A tendency to let his tail droop. This weakness, if one can call it that with a straight face, apparently cost him last year at Westminster. Fortunately, he managed to get that pesky tail under control this year -- and if he can keep it up, he might even be able to snag another Best in Show for himself. (The last toy poodle to do that was Ch. Cappoquin Little Sister in 1961, although standard and miniature poodles have won more recently.)
Walker beat a male Pekingese named Ch. Linn-Lee's For The Good Times, a male shih-tzu named Ch. Hallmark Jolei Austin Powers and a male papillon named Ch. Forevr Errol Flynn to win the toy group. Tuesday night, he'll take on a whippet named Chanel from the hound group, a French bulldog named I'm on Fire from the non-sporting group, a puli named Conrad from the herding group and the yet-to-be-decided winners of the working, sporting and terrier groups in Westminster's Best in Show competition.
A Brussels griffon named Ch. Cilleine Masquerade won the toy group last year.
-- Lindsay Barnett
Photo: Henny Ray Abrams / Associated Press