Meet Buddy Holly, the Pup That Just Won Best in Show at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
This fluffy friend made history this week at the world-famous dog show!
With over 3,000 contestants representing 210 different dog breeds, the competition at the 147th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show this week was high. But 6-year-old Buddy Holly was cool, calm and confident on the carpet, and captured the hearts of the judges—and everyone else who watched little Buddy Holly shine.
After winning the Best in Hound group round earlier in the week, this pup took home the prestigious Best in Show award at the end of the night, wowing everyone with his fluffy tail and his poised strut down the green carpet.
What dog breed won Best in Show at the Westminster Dog Show 2023?
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Buddy Holly is a Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen (also referred to as a PBGV), a breed of scent-hound dogs from France known for rabbit-hunting in bramble terrain. In the United States, this breed is simply known as “Petit” and in England, the dogs are called “Roughies.” Buddy Holly’s win was actually history-making, as he was the first PBGV to win the prestigious Best in Show prize, dethroning some of the most popular dog breeds to win including wire fox terriers, Scottish terriers and English springer spaniels.
In order to win Best in Show, the judges are looking at the dog’s overall appearance, temperament and structure, proving they are the best of the best in terms of their breed and what they are born to do. Buddy Holly blew away the competition with his confidence, stubbornness and joy as he made his way down the carpet, proving to everyone that he truly is the best PBGV for the job.
Who owns Buddy Holly the dog?
Buddy Holly’s dog handler at the Westminster Dog Show was co-owner Janice Hayes from Palm Springs, who co-owns Buddy Holly with Donna Moore, Eric Cadmore and Cathy Neill. Hayes recently told Good Morning America that she knew since she was nine that Buddy was made to be a champion dog.
“I knew it was going to happen. I don’t know why, I just fell in love with the sport then and I knew exactly what I wanted to do from then,” Hayes said to GMA, after “rolling up in style” to his big TV interview, catching the attention of anchor Michael Strahan.
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Buddy Holly was named after the famous American singer-songwriter of the same name, and while the name is kooky and charming, it certainly isn’t one of the funniest names of Westminster show dogs we’ve seen.
Who were some of the other winners at the Westminster Dog Show in 2023?
While Buddy Holly took home the ultimate Best in Show prize, there were a few other unforgettable Westminster dog show moments within smaller categories, including some famous returns from runner-ups of years past.
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- Rummie the Pekingese won Best in Toy Group
Sarah Stier/Getty Images
- Winston the French Bulldog won Best in Non-Sporting Group
- Ribbon the Australian Shepherd won Best in Herding Group
Winston won runner-up in Best in Show in 2022, and had he won this year, he would have also made history as the first French Bulldog to take the top prize. This is his second year in a row to win best within his group, and he even outright won The National Dog Show in November 2022.
- Press Release: The 147th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
- ABC News: “Owner speaks out after dog makes history with Westminster win”
- CNN: “Buddy Holly, the petit basset griffon Vendéen, wins best in show at Westminster Dog Show”
- Bleacher Report: “Westminster Dog Show 2023 Results: Best of Breed Winners and Monday Recap”