Every year, thousands of dogs representing the best of their breeds gather for the American Kennel Club’s National Championship Dog Show. Last week, the show drew its largest entry ever, with dogs from all 50 states and over 44 countries vying for best in show and best in breed. Over 4800 purebred dogs representing AKC’s 190 recognized breeds entered the national championship, and an additional thousand took part in related events like the Obedience Classic, Agility Invitational, and junior events.
Over 400,000 people watched the show’s live stream, which gave people all across America access to a number of events, from award ceremonies for service and companion dogs, to group judging based on breed and age.
If you missed out, you can still catch the recorded content here!
The live online audience engaged at a high rate of over 16%, which is no surprise when you see the videos of sleek-coated, alert, well-trained puppies and older dogs trotting across the red carpet alongside well-dressed trainers. In particular, the ACE awards for Service Dog, Uniformed Service Dog, Exemplary Companion Dog, Search & Rescue Dog, and Therapy Dog presented powerful stories about the bond between dogs and humans, and left audiences touched to the point of tears.
In the end, the coveted award for Best In Show, along with $50,000, went to a Cocker Spaniel named Striker. Other awards were given out for best sporting dog (also Striker), hound, working dog, terrier, toy, non-sporting, and herding dogs.
The live stream was most avidly viewed by people in California, followed by Illinois and Virginia, and caught the attention of dog owners and fans alike. Ultimately, live streaming the event was a great way to spread the word about the American Kennel Club, and the event’s sponsors, Royal Canin and Animal Planet. Plus, it’s really fun to watch!
Remember to check out the highlights on the AKC site, and tune in next year!