Claire the Scottish Deerhound beat out hundreds of canines on Thursday to take home the top prize at the National Dog Show.
Claire was named Best in Show at the event, which this year was scaled down slightly — with due to Covid-19. The show featured just 600 dogs rather than the usual 2,000 — but Claire’s victory is no less significant.
“She saw a picture of the dog doing exactly what it was bred to do,” said David Frei, a commentator for NBC, when asked what the judges saw in Claire.
“It was built perfectly, has an active, easy gait, and is elegant in the way that Sir Walter Scott had in mind when he called the Deerhound the most perfect creature.”
Claire came out of the Hound group, defeating six other dogs who came out at the top of their respective groups.
The National Dog Show, hosted by the Kennel Club of Philadelphia, was held over two days on November 14 and 15. The show, which was first broadcast on NBC in 2002, has aired on Thanksgiving following the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade for almost 20 years.
Founded by The Kennel Club of Philadelphia in 1879, the show has been held annually since 1933.
Like other events in 2020, spectators were not allowed at the show this year because of the ongoing pandemic — cardboard cutouts replaced a live audience. Masks and social distancing were also strictly enforced.
This year’s show also introduced three new dog breeds: the Barbet, the Belgian Laekenois and the Dogo Argentino, according to NBC.