I’ve made the trip from balmy California to seasonally frigid New York City for the Westminster Kennel Club’s 136th Annual Dog Show. As a warm-up to the competition, I attended the Pre-Westminster Fashion Show at New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania.
This year’s theme was "Venetian Masquerade," which featured canines and humans displaying their unique interpretations of Venetian masks and attire. Sponsored and produced by Oehler Media Productions (publisher of Cesar's Way magazine), the night of high fashion was paired with philanthropy, as the event benefited animal welfare through the support of Animal Care and Control of New York City.
A colorful variety of canines and humans participated in and attended the festivities, including entertainment correspondent and host AJ Hammer, of CNN and Showbiz Tonight.
Other notable runway walkers included Greg Kleva (Host of It’s a Dog’s Life on Sirius XM 110 - Martha Stewart Radio) and Nikki Moustaki (award winning writer and founder of the Pet Postcard Project).
One of the night’s fashion highlights was a four seasons based "puptuals" wedding, which featured canine couples sporting spring, summer, fall and winter inspired garb. The wedding ceremonies were followed by the "exhibitors runway show," organized by Best in Show sponsors, Natural Balance Pet Food.
Participating exhibitors who were showcasing especially novel and useful pet products included:
I am now prepping for an intense two days of watching the world’s premiere canines compete at Westminster 2012. As part of petMD News, I’ll be sharing my veterinary perspective over the next two days of competitions as they play out on the floor of Madison Square Garden.
As Westminster is a public show, the benching area will be housing each dog breed around the time of their showing. Such complete access will allow me an up close and personal view of the dogs and their breeders, handlers, and owners.
We’ll be featuring the six breeds premiering at Westminster 2012, as well as exploring some of the breed specific illnesses about which potential owners should be aware of before bringing one of these dog breeds home.
Check back soon for updates on the high profile excitement that is the Westminster Kennel Club dog show.
You can also follow on Twitter @PatrickMahaney and @petMD for real time updates on #WKC (@WKCDogs).
The Hound, Toy, Non-Sporting and Herding groups will be televised live on Monday, February 13 on the USA Network from 8-9 p.m. EST, and continuing on CNBC from 9-11 p.m. EST.
The Sporting, Working and Terrier groups, as well as Best In Show, will be broadcast live on Tuesday, February 14 on the USA Network from 8-11 PM EST.
Image credit: Talesandtails.com, on The Pre-Westminster Fashion Show's Facebook page