Beagle winning at Westminster could mean a win for local animal shelters

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CLAY COUNTY, Mo. -- At the Westminster Dog Show, beagle "Miss P" won best in show.

Shelters in the metro say there's a direct correlation between events like this and an increase of adoptions.

"When I was doing some research on beagles, I did hear that they had won, and I read a few articles and that definitely piqued my interest into looking if there was any beagles in our area and that`s when we came upon June," said new beagle owner Katie Gregory, who adopted June, a beagle mix, this week.

She works in a library, so she had been researching various breeds and says the decision was obvious.

"We heard they`re super friendly and good with kids, and they just make great friends to have, and they like to be active and play and so we were definitely looking for a beagle," Gregory added.

Animal shelters around the metro say that "Miss P's" big win could mean more beagles will soon have homes.

"Any time there`s a popular movie or anything in the media that specifically targets a particular breed, we do see an influx of that," said Angie Deras, the animal control supervisor at Gladstone Animal Shelter.

She says the Westminster Dog Show is no exception to that trend.

"Dalmatians is a classic example; anytime there`s a big showing of that or there`s something in the paper, then we automatically get calls and visits of folks looking for dalmatians," Deras said.

"When you think you think of a show dog you think of something with lots of hair, that`s going to get groomed a lot, that`s very high maintenance," said Meredith Weaver, an animal control officer at Liberty Animal Shelter.

She says beagles aren't difficult animals to get adopted out, and says "Miss P" taking the crown at the dog show could definitely be good news for the breed.

"Popular culture definitely has a huge effect on whether people go out and get this breed or that breed," added Weaver.

"We often will recommend the breed or breed mixes for families looking for a smaller dog, with smaller kids. They traditionally are great pets for that market," said Deras.

"She's been great so far, so hopefully other people have the same experience," Gregory said.

Weaver adds that people love beagles because they're friendly and outgoing, but she says beagles are often yappier than some others, to make sure you do your research before adopting.

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