Thursday, March 21, 2019



John O’Hurley and David Frei to Co-Host the Celebrated Canine Competition with Mary Carillo and Maria Menounos as Official Correspondents
NEW YORK – March 21, 2019 – Combining the star power of both Hollywood and the canine world, NBC is set to air the third annual “Beverly Hills Dog Show Presented by Purina®” on Easter Sunday, April 21 (1-3 p.m. ET/10 a.m.-12 p.m. PT).

In celebration of man’s best friend and with the glamour only Beverly Hills can provide, the star-studded competition will be co-hosted by award-winning TV personality, author and Broadway actor John O’Hurley and American Kennel Club-licensed judge and expert analyst David Frei. Emmy Award-winning journalist, author and TV personality Maria Menounos will welcome two and four-legged celebrity guests on the red carpet, NBC Sports correspondent Mary Carillo will report from inside the show ring and “American Ninja Warrior” host Akbar Gbajabiamila will provide behind-the-scenes access as digital contributor.

“This show brings the best of the best in the dog world into one competition. What better backdrop for such high-pedigree talent than the glitz and glam of Beverly Hills?” said Gbajabiamila. “I’m so excited to give exclusive access to viewers and which the whole family can enjoy.”

This year’s dog-loving celebrity guests will include Mario Lopez, Ashley Tisdale, Shaun White, Bo Derek, Parveen Kaur, Michaela McManus, J.R. Ramirez, Melissa Roxburgh and Triple Crown-winning jockeys Victor Espinoza and Mike Smith.

Hosted by the Kennel Club of Beverly Hills and produced by NBC Sports, “The Beverly Hills Dog Show Presented by Purina®” is a new breed of dog show and a new holiday tradition for the whole family. Before more than 1,500 dogs representing 200 eligible breeds and varieties face off for the coveted Best in Show title, the canine competitors will mingle with celebrity guests and strut their stuff on the red carpet. For the main event, each group winner will walk the show’s unique runway for the Best in Show judge to determine which dog has what it takes to be champion.

Watch and share a sneak peek featuring Gbajabiamila, who brought a special Ninja Warrior course to the Beverly Hills Dog Show. Indie, a record-breaking Belgian Malinois, takes on the challenge with owner Michon Mills:

Last year, King, a 7-year-old Wire Fox Terrier from Brazil, was crowned Best in Show. He later went on to win Best in Show at the prestigious 2019 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York. In 2017, Ripcord, a Doberman Pinscher from Houston, was awarded the Best in Show title. 

To spread the excitement around this year’s show and allow viewers and their pets to be a part of it, Purina and NBC are encouraging pet owners across the country to log onto Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to post photos or videos that show what makes their dog a star. For every original post submitted between now and April 21, using the hashtag #EveryDogIsAStar, dog lovers can show off their pet’s star quality for a chance to be featured on NBC during “The Beverly Hills Dog Show Presented by Purina” airing on April 21, Easter Sunday.

For more information on “The Beverly Hills Dog Show Presented by Purina,” visit
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“The Beverly Hills Dog Show Presented by Purina®” will be co-hosted by award-winning TV personality, author and Broadway star John O’Hurley (“Seinfeld,” “Dancing with the Stars”). Dubbed one of People magazine’s “Sexiest Men Alive,” he is best known as J. Peterman on “Seinfeld,” for which he received a Screen Actors Guild Award. He was also the ultimate champion of the first ever “Dancing with the Stars” television show. He has authored three books – “Before The Dog Can Eat Your Homework First You Have To Do It: Life Lessons From a Wise Old Dog to a Young Boy” (Hudson Street Press, 2007), the New York Times bestseller “It’s Okay to Miss the Bed on the First Jump” (Plume, 2007) and his latest book for children, “The Perfect Dog” (Grosset & Dunlap, 2013), which since its release has inspired “The Perfect Dog,” a musical designed for children’s theatre. The musical production is licensed by Theatrical Rights Worldwide as part of its Theatre for Young Audiences catalogue. He is currently starring in his own one-man show, “A Man with Standards,” a humorous and poignant take on his life and experiences in show business.

America’s foremost authority on all things canine, David Frei is a natural choice to serve as host and expert analyst for the National Dog Show Presented by Purina®. An American Kennel Club (AKC)-licensed judge who has officiated dog shows all over the world, Frei hosted television coverage of the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show for 26 years. A successful former breeder/handler/owner, he is proudest of the work his therapy dogs have done at the Ronald McDonald House of New York, the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, among other health-related institutions. Frei’s first book, “The Angel by My Side” (Hay House Publishing, 2002, with Mike Lingenfelter), claimed two Dog Writers Association of America (DWAA) Awards. His latest book, “Angel on a Leash” (BowTie Press, 2011), also a DWAA award winner, tells of his years of experience and work with therapy dogs. In 2018, Frei was inducted into the Dog Writers Association of America Hall of Fame. 

Emmy Award-winning journalist, TV personality, motivational speaker, New York Times best-selling author, host of the Noovie cinema pre-show and Co-Founder/CEO of the AfterBuzz TV Streaming Networks, Maria Menounos has gained numerous achievements throughout her career in the news and entertainment industry. One of People magazine’s 50 Most Beautiful, Menounos holds the distinct honor of having conducted the only sit-down interview with the Obama family, an interview ABC News heralded as a deciding factor in President Obama’s historic victory. Currently, Menounos hosts the Noovie cinema pre-show seen daily in 70 percent of America’s movie theaters, and her weekly podcast, “Conversations with Maria Menounos,” introduces listeners to stars, newsmakers and successful women in engaging conversations on their journeys, advice and passions. As one of the only female CEO’s in the tech world, Menounos heads the AfterBuzz TV digital broadcast streaming network, which produces over 150 hours of weekly programming for more than 120 countries worldwide. Menounos’ AfterBuzz TV mentorship program has helped launch careers for the likes of Fox TV’s Eboni K. Williams, WWE Superstars Sonia Deville and Cathy Kelly, Netflix’s Koramo Brown, “Entertainment Tonight’s” Courtney Tezeno and Deirdre Behar, and hundreds of others.

Mary Carillo is a former professional tennis player who has earned awards and accolades for her work as a television analyst and has become a fixture at the Olympic Games for more than two decades as a reporter, analyst and host. Carillo has received two coveted Peabody Awards, one for her work on the HBO documentary “Billie Jean King: Portrait of a Pioneer” and the other for co-writing, with Frank Deford, the HBO documentary “Dare to Compete: The Struggle of Women in Sport.” Carillo was named best commentator by both Tennis magazine and World Tennis magazine and broadcaster of the year by the WTA. She has co-written two books — “Tennis My Way,” with Martina Navratilova, and Rick Elstein’s “Tennis Kinetics.” Carillo played on the professional tennis tour from 1977-80. Teaming with childhood friend John McEnroe, she won the 1977 French Open mixed doubles title. In 1977 she was a doubles quarterfinalist at the U.S. Open and a doubles runner-up at the U.S. Clay Court Championships.

Akbar Gbajabiamila is host of NBC’s three-time Emmy Award-nominated hit competition series “American Ninja Warrior,” which begins its eleventh season this summer. He is also the host of “American Ninja Warrior Juniors” on the Universal Kids Network. Gbajabiamila is a former NFL star who also currently hosts one of NFL Network’s highest-rated shows, “NFL Fantasy Live.” He has made headlines being parodied on “Saturday Night Live” by Drake, as well as hailed in the media as a hero for chasing down a hit-and-run suspect who sideswiped a Los Angeles motorcycle cop. Gbajabiamila made his debut on NBC’s “The Night Shift,” as well as hosted NBC’s 2017 “Red Nose Day Special” and “Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular.”

Nestlé Purina PetCare Company is a global leader in the pet care industry. Nestlé Purina PetCare promotes responsible pet care, community involvement and the positive bond between people and their pets. A premiere global manufacturer of pet products, Nestlé Purina PetCare is part of Swiss-based Nestlé S.A., a global leader in nutrition, health and wellness.

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