The Westminster Dog Show 2011 didn’t favor a Scottish deerhound at first. In fact, the Westminster Dog Show 2011 was the first to have a Scottish deerhound as a serious contender. Yet 5-year-old Foxcliffe Hickory Wind – a.k.a. Hickory – was not deterred in last night’s finale. Around 2,600 canines and 179 breeds were representing the best of their species. However, the Westminster Dog Show selected a Scottish deerhound to best represent them for the first time ever.
After two days, several rounds, and various jogs, the competition for best in show came down to seven contestants. They emerged from sub-sections like the Hound, Toy, Non-Sporting, Herding, Working, Sporting and Terrier Groups before finally facing each other.
Historically, the Westminster Dog Show seemed certain to go against the Scottish deerhound. This breed had never won the best in show prize, but Hickory seemed to have no knowledge of that track record. She put her best paw forward against breeds like the Pekingese, Chinese Shar-Pei, Bearded Collie, Black Cocker Spaniel, Smooth Fox Terrier, and the Portuguese Water Dog – President Obama’s favorite.
After winning the Hound Group on Monday, Hickory put herself on the line once more. The 5-year-old was said to be an expert at chasing wild animals, yet she had an even bigger chase ahead last night. In the end, she finally caught up to her competition, and was quickly selected by head judge Paolo Dondina.
With the victory, the Scottish deerhound is heading into retirement on a high note. Her owners will now let her take a victory lap at her 50-acre farm in Warrenton, Virginia. She has a lot to brag about, since she made history for her breed.
Although the Scottish deerhound has been around since the beginning of the show, none of them were able to win until now. But since they are among the oldest known breeds in existence, they had gotten used to waiting around. However, their 133-year-old losing streak was apparently long enough for them to pay their dues.
For the competition, the Westminster results were a more disappointing near miss. Portuguese Water Dog Ladybug missed a chance to become the second most famous canine of her breed, after the Obama’s pet. Meanwhile, Smooth Fox Terrier Adam fell short of being the second straight terrier to win best in show.
The human masters of the Westminster Dog Show had to be pleased, since it was once again held to near capacity at Madison Square Garden. For the 135th straight year, dogs were the biggest sports stars in New York for a few days, with the Scottish deerhound becoming a superstar at long last.
Kansas City Star- “Scottish Deerhound named Westminster champion”
Daily Mail- “Westminster Dog Show 2011: Scottish deerhound crowned best in show”