Gia the 4-year-old Greyhound won Best in Show at the 2016 National Dog Show. The show, which took place last weekend but aired on NBC today, is part of the Kennel Club of Philadelphia’s annual cluster of dog shows. Almost 2,000 dogs in 189 different breeds compete each year for the title of Best in Show, and 25 million people tune in to watch the two-hour holiday special with host John O’Hurley, expert analyst David Frei, and sports commentator Mary Carillo. This year’s champion is Gia, the No. 1 Greyhound in the country, and this is her 44th Best in Show.
After Gia’s big win, Dogster spoke with her breeder/owner-handler, Rindi Gaudet, who told us about Gia (GCh. GrandCru Giaconda) and why Greyhounds make great pets.
Dogster: What’s next for Gia?
Rindi Gaudet: She’ll retire at Westminster for the major part of her career. She will be bred when she comes in season, so she’s basically being retired in February.
Forty-four Best in Shows is a lot for a Greyhound. Is she going to try to break the all-time record?
There’s a bitch that’s named Punky that was shown in the mid-70s that had 68 Best in Shows. I have no aspirations to break that record. It’s not something that needs to be broken. It’s a record that’s been held for so long.
Tell us a little bit about her personality.
Well, you can see it! She just plays. She’s a clown. I mean, she’s great!
What’s her favorite thing to do?
Her favorite thing to do is sleep on the bed and not get up. And then to run around the yard and boss everybody else around. It is one of my favorite things to sit in the house and watch my Greyhounds run around outside the house.
Does she do any other sports?
Besides lay on the couch? (Rindi chuckles.)
Like lure coursing or anything?
She doesn’t do lure coursing yet. I don’t course them until they’re done being shown. She has coursed, but I don’t do her a lot. She runs with the rest of the dogs all the time.
Is there anything you’d want people to know about Greyhounds before they decide get one?
People think they need a lot of space to run, but they do not. As long as you take them for walks and let them sprint once or twice a week, they’re great. If you are a big dog person and you live in an apartment, this is a great dog. They like to just lay on the couch and be subdued and go out and run around once in a while. These are absolutely fabulous pets.