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At Westminster Dog Show, New Jersey therapy dog competed, but did not place for top prize

Skye was relaxed and looking like a winner trotting around the ring at the most exclusive dog show in the country.

The Greater Swiss Mountain dog that turned into a media sensation competed at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show for the second year in a row. Although he had a confident stance and playful run, the Swissie did not place as the best of his breed during Tuesday’s competition.

“He looked good, but it wasn’t his day!” Superintendent Daniel Dooley, who trained Skye to be a therapy dog for the Commercial Township School District in Cumberland County, texted after the winners were picked. “He gave it his all, we are proud of him.”

Indeed. In Commercial Township, students cheered for their hometown canine, having a blast as the show was streamed online for them to watch in real time. As was the case last year, they were happy for Skye win or lose.

Skye lined up with the others in the Swissie category waiting for the 1:30 p.m. start at Pier 94 in New York. Skye was vying for best of breed  against more than a dozen others to go on to the working dog category at Madison Square Garden.

“They all look fabulous,” Dooley said in the morning as the tri-colored pure bred with a white blaze waited for his turn to compete.

Last year, Skye advanced to the Garden, but did not place there.

Swissies are not typically working dogs and had Skye won the working dog category, he would have been the first to do so at Westminster. Dooley thought Skye had an advantage over the others because he is trained to stay focused regardless of the hoopla surrounding him. In rural Commercial Township, Skye calms students…

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