John O'Hurley and David Frei return to co-host NBC's holiday tribute to man's best friend
NBC will present the 12th annual edition of its popular holiday special The National Dog Show Presented by Purina on Thanksgiving Day (noon-2 p.m. in all time zones) following the telecast of NBC's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Celebrating America's continued fascination with man's best friend, The National Dog Show Presented by Purina is hosted by award-winning actor, author and Broadway star John O'Hurley ("Seinfeld," "Dancing with the Stars") and expert analyst David Frei, an American Kennel Club-licensed judge and host of USA Network's "Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show." NBC's Mary Carillo will report from the benching area and inside the show ring.
"Dogs bring so much love and joy to homes around the country," O'Hurley said. "I'm happy to once again celebrate Thanksgiving with both my family and my National Dog Show family."
Included this year are three new AKC-sanctioned breeds: the Chinook (working group), the Portuguese Podengo Pequeno (hound group) and the Rat Terrier (terrier group). The broadcast will also feature stories on special dogs that have had an unforgettable impact on the lives around them.
An established family holiday tradition, the show reached more than 19 million viewers last year and is part of a five-hour block of family programming on the most family-centric holiday of the year. The 2012 telecast marked the first time a breed took top honors for two consecutive years, when Sky, a wire fox terrier, was named 2012's Best in Show.
The telecast will showcase some 1,500 purebred canines competing for the title of Best in Show, with $20,000 in prize money and enormous prestige at stake. Unlike traditional dog show coverage, the National Dog Show offers the country's 65 million pet-owning households an afternoon of family-oriented activities, facilitated by the open format of the Kennel Club of Philadelphia event. As one of the only remaining "benched" dog shows, all of the competing breeds are on display all day for the visiting public.
NBC will present an encore of this year's National Dog Show Presented by Purina on Saturday, Nov. 30 (8-10 p.m. ET/PT).