ohn O’Hurley has lived The
National Dog Show Presented
by Purina since its inception
in 2002, and he unabashedly
lets everyone know it is his favorite
day of the year.
The statuesque, silver-haired O’Hurley,
best known for his role as J. Peterman on
Seinfeld, is also remembered for another
;i;;; o; ;; ;i;;o;;; ;u;ing ;;;; ;;;;
season of Dancing with the Stars in 2005,
he ended up in a “dance off” with soap
opera star, Kelly Monaco. Along with
partner Charlotte Jorgensen, O’Hurley
emerged as the ultimate champion
and the show lives on today as one of
America’s most popular.
It has been more than a decade since
the actor/TV personality welcomed dogs
into his working world and during that
time—inspired by his own four-leggeds
and his son, Will—O’Hurley has written
three books about dogs and discovered
that a lifelong love can be a career
“I would be watching reruns of It’s A
Wonderful Life on Thanksgiving Day from
my home,” O’Hurley offers about how his
life would be different without the show.
“I’d be referring to dogs by their color and
size and have a working knowledge of
maybe two breeds. But 12 years of The
National Dog Show has given my wife
and I a wealth of knowledge about God’s
great creatures and the extraordinary
experience of spending Thanksgiving week
in New York City. We are so grateful for all.”
O;;u;;;;;; ;;;; ;;o ;oo;; — It’s Okay
To Miss The Bed On the First Jump: And
Other Life Lessons I Learned From Dogs
(Hudson Street Press, 2005) 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 (Hudson Street Press,
2007)—are whimsical tales suitable for
all ages. In 2013, O’Hurley published the
children’s book, The Perfect Dog (Grosset
& Dunlap, 2013), which is adapted from
a poem he wrote when questioned by
his young son about whether such a
dog exists. Another best seller was born
and O’Hurley has now done more than
100 book signing sessions and scores
of charitable appearances as part of his
love affair with man’s best friend.
Big Dog on Turkey Day
One man’s fascination with The National Dog Show.
BY NICOLETTE BLACKWELL
above John O’Hurley and wife Lisa Mesloh arrive at the inaugural National Dog Show Charity Gala
held on the Friday night before the annual Kennel Club of Philadelphia Show weekend.
;;;;;e John O’Hurley and Morgan in a handsome pose during National Dog Show videotaping at
Purina headquarters in St. Louis last year.
Thanksgiving has gone to the dogs.
As one can imagine, the stars of
Thanksgiving Day’s National Dog Show on
NBC will take all the attention they can
get. This Purina-sponsored, two-hour
TV special has become a phenomenon
both as a traditional showcase for
man’s best friend and as a newly
minted pop culture institution on
Thanksgiving Day. In each of America’s
four time zones, it airs from 12–2;;,
after the famed Macy’s Parade and
before NFL football takes over the day.
With an audience of over 20 million
nationwide, that is a lot of attention for
our furry friends.