Dogs of all shapes, sizes and colors come to New York City for two days in February to compete at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, presented by Purina® Pro Plan®. Only one dog can be named Best in Show, but first dogs must win their Group competitions. The small statured dogs of the Toy Group are the second to take the ring on night one of the competition.
The diminutive size and winsome expressions of the dogs in the AKC Toy Group illustrate the main function of this Group: to embody sheer delight. Don't let their tiny stature fool you, many Toys are tough as nails. Toy dogs will always be popular with city dwellers and people without much living space. They make ideal apartment dogs and terrific lap warmers on nippy nights. These dogs are loyal and intelligent companions, provided that you give them plenty of attention. Tiny dogs also excel at learning new tricks and participating in obedience.
Dogs in the AKC Toy Group often resemble their larger cousins: the Pomeranian as a Nordic breed, the Papillion as a little Spaniel or the Toy Poodle as the smallest variety of the Poodle. The Toy Group is not the only group that contains small dogs, smaller breeds can actually be found in every group.
Notable toy dog breeds include the Maltese, Havanese, Pekingese, Pomeranian, and the Chihuahua.
Fun Facts about the Toy Group
The Pekingese is the “winningest” breed in the Toy Group with 26 Group wins.*
The Pekingese was the Group Winner last year, fueling his victory with Purina® Pro Plan®.**
In 2013, Banana Joe, an Affenpinscher, became the 7th Best In Show Champion in a row to be fueled by Purina® Pro Plan®.**
11 Best In Show Winners have come from the Toy Group.
The Pomeranian and the Pekingese are tied for most consecutive Group wins at 3 each.
The Havanese is the National dog of Cuba.
The Maltese has won the Toy Group 5 times.
There are two varieties of Chihuahuas, Long Coat and Smooth Coat. Neither variety has ever won Best in Show.
* Since the Group Competition started in 1924.
** The handler or owner of these champions may have received Purina® Pro Plan® dog food as Purina ambassadors.
Put your Toy Group knowledge to the test
Fill out a dog show bracket by choosing the Toy Group winner, 6 other Group Winners and the Best in Show champion. If your selections match the actual winners you could win $1 million!†
† $1 Million prize will be split evenly among verified winners.
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Legal residents of the 50 United States (D.C.), 18 years or older. Promotion consists of a Contest and a Sweepstakes; enter both by 2/12/18 at 5:00pm ET. To enter and for Official Rules, including prize descriptions and Sweepstakes odds disclosures, visit Dogshowbracket.com. Void where prohibited.