The 2018 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show kicks off on Monday in New York City.
There are nine dogs competing from West Virginia, including a Pyrenean Shepherd named Clipper from the Ohio Valley.
Clipper was born in France and transplanted to West Virginia.
He is not just man’s best friend–he is a champion.
Last year, Clipper earned a special honor at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. He won “Best of Breed.”
“Very few people win the breed. People that are in this sport for years, devote their life to their dogs, they never win the breed. Some people never get a ribbon at Westminster, and Clipper has never walked out without one,” said Clipper’s handler Brendan Coleman.
Aside from being one of the winningest Pyrenean Shepherds in breed history, Clipper is also unique because of his age.
He is almost ten, which is uncommonly old for a competitive show dog.
Brendan says most show dogs peak around five or six, but Clipper has gotten better with age.
He runs five to six miles per day and takes a variety of vitamins and supplements to make sure he stays healthy.
Clipper has worked hard for his success, which has actually come as a surprise to his handler.
“Like some dogs, he went through an awkward stage, and they put him up for a couple years. He came out just to be a placeholder when I had some other dogs retire, and he was just supposed to be a filler. We made him a superstar. He came into the ring, he lights up, and that’s his job and he loves it,” said Coleman.
Clipper and Brendan will compete in the breed competition on Monday.
If Clipper wins best of breed, he will compete with the Herding Group on Monday night at 8:00 p.m..