A Word or Two from AKC President & CEO Dennis Sprung

Dennis Sprung

Happy New Year! We are excited to begin to share with you the many wonderful things AKC has in store to be helpful to our core constituencies in 2024. Your contributions, commitment, dedication, and volunteerism to AKC are vital and appreciated. There is an abundance of announcements to start off this year and we are thrilled to share some with you.

We begin by congratulating the AKC National Championship Best in Show Winner, “Comet,” a Shih Tzu. He triumphed over more than 5,700 competitors this year at the AKC® National Championship Presented by Royal Canin, held December 16-17, 2023 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, to earn this prestigious title. Comet, owned by Bonnie J. Miller, Susan Carter, and Luke & Diane Ehricht of Monclova, Ohio, bred by Luke and Diane and handled by Luke, was crowned “America’s National Champion” by Best in Show Judge Mr. Clay Coady and is America’s only National Champion in Conformation for 2023.

In January, we recognized the 201st breed. We are very happy to have the Lancashire Heeler join the AKC registry. The Lancashire Heeler, also known as Heeler, is an affectionate, versatile, and intelligent breed whose history dates back to the 17th century. Heelers are small yet sturdy, energetic workers and would be a great companion for active families. We look forward to seeing them competitive in various AKC sports.

Lastly, we are pleased to share with you that we have launched AKCRx as a new health and wellness initiative. AKC is working with, an award-winning pet pharmacy authorized to dispense pet medications in all 50 states. This program will offer a full complement of FDA and EPA over-the-counter and pharmacy selections for a wide range of animals, including dogs, cats, horses, livestock, fish, and birds. Orders that are placed on are processed and filled by AKCRx welcomes every dog enthusiast. Our goal is to provide a trusted, easy, and effective way for breeders and owners to secure the medicines their pets need. New registrants will receive a complimentary dose of Simparica Trio, valued at up to $32.

I am appreciative of your contributions as responsible breeders, exhibitors, owners, and judges. You are truly what makes us great. We are excited to see what this year has in store!