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[01/15/14 - 09:00 AM]
USA Network & Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show Crown Best in Show at Madison Square Garden for the 30th Consecutive Year
David Frei returns to co-host with "Weekend Today" co-anchor Erica Hill, and E! News correspondent Alicia Quarles rounds out the team as floor reporter.

[via press release from USA]

USA NETWORK & WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW CROWN BEST IN SHOW AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN FOR THE 30th CONSECUTIVE YEAR

The 138th WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW, with Returning Presenting Partner Purina(R) Pro Plan(R), Airs Live on USA Network February 11 at 8pm ET / 5pm PT

David Frei Co-Hosts with Erica Hill, Alicia Quarles Serves as Floor Reporter

USA to Stream All Individual Breed Judging in Real Time at WKCLive.com Along with a Special Live Sync Experience During the On-Air Broadcast

NEW YORK - January 15, 2014 - USA Network will air the 138th WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW, presented by Purina(R) Pro Plan(R), live on February 11 from 8-11pm ET / 5-8pm PT. David Frei returns to co-host with Weekend TODAY co-anchor Erica Hill, and E! News correspondent Alicia Quarles rounds out the team as floor reporter. Part one of the Madison Square Garden competition will be televised live on CNBC Monday, February 10 from 8-11pm ET / 5-8pm PT.

USA is once again offering unparalleled digital access throughout the event, starting at 8:00am ET/5:00am PT on February 10. The live daytime judging of all 187 breeds and varieties can be accessed online or on mobile devices at WKCLive.com. Sponsored by presenting partner Purina Pro Plan, the judging will be filmed by fixed and roaming cameras that will showcase the in-the-ring and out-of-the-ring action. Additionally, USA's WKC homepage will feature the Social Buzz Dashboard, which allows fans to chat live about the event. Powered by Rebel Mouse, the dashboard also aggregates all social conversations surrounding the show, including feeds from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. During primetime on Tuesday, USA will offer a live second screen experience on USA Sync, providing instant access to exclusive content and competition commentary. Fans can engage with trivia, polls, photos and video on the web (WKCSync.com) while they watch.

This year, three new breeds officially recognized by the American Kennel Club will make their debut at Westminster. The playful Rat Terrier joins the Terrier Group; the intelligent Portuguese Podengo Pequeno joins the Hound Group; and the athletic Chinook, the official state dog of New Hampshire, joins the Working Group.

Monday evening's competition on CNBC includes Hound, Toy, Non-Sporting and Herding groups. Tuesday's judging will consist of Sporting, Working and Terrier groups followed by the 2014 crowning of Best In Show live on USA Network. Betty Regina Leininger of Frisco, Texas, will head a panel of 44 judges from 20 states, Canada and Ireland to judge this year's Best In Show.

A total of 2,845 dogs and 91 Junior Showmanship competitors were entered this year, representing 49 states and 13 foreign countries. The most dogs were entered from New York (272), followed by California (239) and Pennsylvania (211). The highest entry breed was the Labrador Retriever with a total of 76 dogs entered. Other top entries include Golden Retrievers (58), French Bulldogs (52), Rhodesian Ridgebacks (46) and Australian Shepherds (44).

David Frei joins the show for the 25th consecutive year in his role as co-host. As a longtime breeder, owner, handler and judge in the world of purebred dogs, he has experienced competitive success with his Afghan Hounds, Brittanys and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. In November 2011, Frei published his award-winning second book titled Angels On A Leash, featuring his work with therapy dogs and breeding.

Purina Pro Plan will serve as presenting sponsor of the show for the third consecutive year. During the broadcast, the brand will air its recently released TV ads, called "Dreams," which demonstrate dogs dreaming about performing amazing feats and state, "If your dog can dream it, Purina Pro Plan can help him achieve it."

"The past seven Westminster Best In Show Champions have been fueled by Purina Pro Plan, so we are delighted to play a role in helping dogs achieve their Westminster dreams," said Candy Caciolo, portfolio director, Professional Engagement Marketing, Nestlé Purina PetCare. "We're proud to be the official pet food sponsor of the show. Supporting Westminster is a great fit for Purina Pro Plan, which has a history of supporting the sport of purebred dogs."

About The Westminster Kennel Club:

The Westminster Kennel Club is America's oldest organization dedicated to the sport of purebred dogs. Established in 1877, Westminster's influence has been felt for more than a century through its famous all breed, benched dog show held every year at New York's Madison Square Garden. The show is America's second longest continuously held sporting event, behind only the Kentucky Derby. For additional information, log on to www.westminsterkennelclub.org.

About USA Network:

The #1 network in all of basic cable for an unprecedented eight straight years, USA Network is seen in over 102 million U.S. homes. USA is a leader in scripted programming with a powerful stable of originals, spectacular live television and is home to the best in blockbuster theatrical films, a broad portfolio of acquired series and entertainment events. A trailblazer in digital innovation and storytelling, USA is defining, driving and setting the industry standard for Social TV. USA is a program service of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, a division of NBCUniversal. The award-winning website is located at http://www.usanetwork.com. Characters Welcome.

About Purina Pro Plan:

Seven of the last seven Westminster Best In Show Champions were fueled by Purina Pro Plan. Our goal is to give your dog the nutrition to be his absolute best, helping him to be energetic and resilient, and maintain an ideal body condition, healthy skin and a stunning coat. Because being the best he can be means something different for every dog, our wide range of dry and wet foods, snacks and supplement bars, sold exclusively at pet specialty stores, can be found in four specialized categories formulated for a dog's unique needs. For more information, visit www.proplan.com.





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