via press release:
John O’Hurley and David Frei Return to Co-host NBC’s Traditional Holiday Special, Airing Noon – 2:00 p.m. after the “Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade”
New York, NY – November 8, 2011 – NBC will present the 10th anniversary edition of its popular holiday special “The National Dog Show Presented by Purina®” this Thanksgiving Day, from noon – 2:00p.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 John O’Hurley, (Seinfeld, Dancing with the Stars) and expert analyst David Frei, the voice of the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show on USA Network and America’s foremost authority on the sport.
Unlike traditional dog show coverage, the National Dog Show offers the country’s 65 million pet-owning households an afternoon of family-oriented features, facilitated by the open format of the Kennel Club of Philadelphia event. As one of only five remaining “benched” dog shows, all of the 170 competing breeds are on display all day for the visiting public. “We have actually generated a legion of long-term fans and established a family holiday tradition,” stated Jon Miller, President of Programming for NBC Sports and VERSUS, who conceived the idea.
Miller had rented the movie "Best In Show," the Christopher Guest-produced “mockumentary” which famously pokes fun at the character-rich show dog world. “I believed that a major dog show could attract and entertain the mass audience that network TV provides.”
The show more than quadrupled the previous year’s time slot rating and ten years later is averaging almost 20 million total viewers as part of a five-hour block of family programming on the most family-centric holiday of the year.
“My hope is that my grandchildren get to watch the show with their grandchildren on Thanksgiving Day,” Miller concluded.
This year, up to 2,000 purebred dogs will compete for the title of “Best In Show” during the telecast, which will also introduce to viewers six new American Kennel Club-sanctioned breeds – the Entlebucher Mountain Dog, Norwegian Lundehund, Xoloitzcuintli, American English Coonhound, Cesky Terrier and Finnish Lapphund.
Since becoming host of the National Dog Show and providing a whimsical “everyman” viewpoint to the broadcast, O’Hurley has written two humorous books on the subject - It's Okay to Miss the Bed on the First Jump: And Other Life Lessons I Learned from Dogs and Before Your Dog Can Eat Your Homework, First You Have to Do It: Life Lessons from a Wise Old Dog to a Young Boy.
Frei, the industry’s most knowledgeable voice, is also a dog owner, handler, judge, author and social media personality who advocates for the increased use of therapy dogs in hospitals and medical care facilities.
For more information on the "National Dog Show" visit NBC.com's "Movies & Specials" site:
http://www.nbc.com/specials. Please follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/NBC and on Twitter at @NBC.