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Westminster Dog Show Announcer Concerned About New Breeds

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(credit: AP)

(credit: AP)

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NEW YORK (CBS) — For the past 21 years, David Frei has stood at Madison Square Garden and announced the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

“It’s the greatest event of its kind in the world, and everyone wants to be here,” Frei told WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Walt Perkins.

The 179 breeds and varieties spend two days strutting their stuff and showing off their best attributes in hopes of bringing home the title Best in Show.

Six breeds were added this year, but Frei says these breeds aren’t necessarily new to the general public. He said the Tibetan mastiff was added to the show only a few years ago, but it may be one of the oldest breeds in the world.

He goes on to say he’s concerned about the manufacturing of certain breeds. “The people who are breeding these dogs, making these puppies, what are they doing with the other half of the litter that doesn’t meet those breed traits?” he asks.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Walt Perkins talks with David Frei.

Although what people see during the televised portions of the dog show is the evening competition when the floor is open, during the day it’s a different scene. Spectators are invited onto the benching area where the dogs and their handlers and breeders present to the judges.

The event lost some space when MSG underwent renovations, but Frei says all of the same types of dogs are in the same area.

In order to get the title Best in Show, dogs at Westminster must pass through three sets of judges – one at the breed, another at group and a third at Best in Show. Therefore, Frei says, breeders and trainers hope their dogs have its “moment of divine inspiration” three times.

“Michael Jordan didn’t score 40 points every time out. And neither does Kobe Byrant to bring it a little more contemporary. But that’s the beauty of the sport. We’re judging it on the day and it’s subjective judging where it’s entirely the opinion of one person at each level.”

The dogs are judged not against the other dogs in their group, he explains, but rather the standards within each breed.

“You can’t compare an Irish wolfhound and a Dachshund.”

The Westminster Dog Show Best in Show will be announced Tuesday night.

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