Meet the Cute Dog That Won Westminster: Banana Joe

Esther Zuckerman
February 13, 2013

With his perpetually wagging tail, funny name, and smiling face (when you can see it amid all that black fur), the affenpinscher named Banana Joe won the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show last night—along with America's heart. The winner of the toy group beat out others like Jewel the American foxhound and  Adam the smooth fox terrier to take the Best in Show title. Crowd-favorite and unlikely Best in Show contender Swagger, the Old English Sheepdog, took the runner-up title of Reserve Best in Show, a prize awarded for the first time since 1925

RELATED: Meet the Xoloitzcuintli, Plus 5 More Breeds Debuting at Westminster 2012

Banana Joe, who is called "Joey" by his handler, is set to take it easy after his big win, heading back to the Netherlands, from whence he originally hails, Richard Sandomir of the New York Times reports. He'll leave behind his home in Bowmansville, Pennsylvania, where he had shared a bed with handler Ernesto Lara. 

RELATED: Pekingese Wins Best in Show at Westminster

Banana Joe remarkable maintained his cool after winning the big prize. Lara said: "I don’t think he has anything to prove." 

RELATED: Malachy the Pekinese Faces Backlash After Best in Show Win

Of course, this morning he had to do his press tour:

RELATED: A Landmark Nuclear Deal, Female Gun Owners, and the Dog Show



Ernesto Lara, "Banana Joe" and David Frei just outside the Today Show during their media tour.…

— WestminsterDogShow (@WKCDOGS) February 13, 2013