John O'Hurley Interview
"The photos in The Perfect Dog are of real dogs and includes pictures of my son talking to me," says O'Hurley. "Will's school has already scheduled him to do a reading. He always asks, 'When is our book coming out?' "
When O'Hurley brings Will to the Dog Show, "He enjoys walking up and down the aisle. It's a growing experience for him every year. We have found touring with the show that families come back year after year and enjoy it more and more. It's such a great family day and an interesting experience to see the different judgings, to see all the dogs getting fluffed."
O'Hurley also stresses the learning aspect of the Dog Show. "When kids know only five or six different breeds – they have an idea that there's a cocker spaniel, a golden retriever, a Dachshund – and then they come to the show and see there are 187-plus breeds and many more on the way. It's a great educational experience that helps celebrate the rich history of breeding."
O'Hurley himself has "never not had a dog." His current pooches, Sadie May (a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel) and Lucy (a Javanese) keep his family busy. "Lucy is the perfect dog," he says. "Sadie May has a wonderful love-bucket quality, and she's born to run."
O'Hurley will be signing copies of The Perfect Dog Sat., Nov. 16 at the Dog Show. He'll also host a gala fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House of Philadelphia the evening of Fri., Nov. 15. "It turns our eyes to the service quality of dogs – therapy dogs, rescue dogs, companion dogs." During the event, show dogs will strut their stuff on the red carpet in order to raise awareness for the good work service dogs do to ease the lives of sick children staying at the Ronald McDonald House during treatment.
With so much attention paid to the real dogs in his life, O'Hurley is quick to point out that sometimes, "the perfect dog" doesn't even have to be a living creature. "Will's stuffed animal, Puppy, has been his companion for many years," the host says. "Will literally goes to school with Puppy, travels with him, sleeps with him. Now that he's on the cover of the book, Puppy is famous – and Will's having the time of his life."
Keep up with O'Hurley at his website, where you'll also find info on his two previous dog-related books: It's Okay to Miss the Bed on the First Jump and Before Your Dog Can Eat Your Homework, First You Have to Do It. Click here to learn more about the Dog Show, including insider tips on how to tour it as a family from commentator David Frei and the goods on the MK kid's zone.