By Jeff Awtrey - email
NEW YORK CITY (KTRE) - A Corrigan bulldog has won a national crown.
"Brix," a bulldog raised in Corrigan by his owner, Mary Grider, won the "Best in Breed" category Monday afternoon at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, the top dog show in the world.
"It was really exciting," Grider said. "I had to get out of the way, because Brix kept trying to walk to me. But eventually the judge brought him to the front of the line, meaning he won."
Brix went on to compete in the non-sporting group, where he did not place, but did make the cut.
"Making the cut in itself is an honor, even though he didn't win the group," Grider said.
"Plus we beat the poodle, which as a bulldog owner you always want to do," she said with a laugh.
Grider has been showing bulldogs since 2002. She said she has always loved bulldogs, as she has lived in Corrigan all her life, home of the Corrigan-Camden High Bulldogs.
"I always wanted one, but I got my first one when my son wanted one as a teenager," she said. "So we bought one as a pet and that's where it first started."
The journey of Brix becoming a champion bulldog is an unlikely one, as Grider sold him as a puppy.
"When he was born I didn't want him, because he's a boy and I have all girl dogs," she said. "So I sold him to a family."
The family came upon hard times with a cancer scare and other health issues, and Grider took Brix to shows when he was 10 months old.
"I took him to the shows and he won three of four of them," she said. "All the sudden, people came up to me wanting to buy him. So I went to the family and offered to buy him back."
After much thought, Grider said the family sold him back to her. And now at 2-and-a-half years old, Grider says his career as a show dog has only begun.
"He'll be living with his handler now," she said. "They'll be traveling around the country and our goal is to make him the number-one bulldog in the nation for 2011."
To do that, Brix has to beat more bulldogs than any other in the shows he competes in. Brix's handler is Jay Serion, from Seattle.