Jerry O'Connell didn't take his job at the American Kennel Club National Championship Presented by Royal Canin lightly. He fully immersed himself in the dog show experience, doing everything from learning how to show a dog to trying his hand at dock diving.
"You know what, you can't help but smile when you walk into this building, especially when you see 30 of the same breed walking into a ring. There's something that's so cute about it," Jerry said of his very first dog show. The dog show newbie dove right in — quite literally — to his duties at the Orlando, FL, event that took place in December but airs tonight on Hallmark at 6 p.m. EST.
Jerry learned the ins and outs of the dog show world, and one of the things he jumped into was dog grooming. "I had a grooming sesh," he told me when I sat down with him right afterward. "They brushed my hair out. I have to admit I may be getting my hair did here from now on. I found it to be really relaxing."
"You know what, you can't help but smile when you walk into this building"
After grooming, he learned how to show a dog in the ring and said it was actually harder than it looks. But Jerry didn't stop there. No, he went over to the pool and dove off a dock, just like those talented dogs. "I'm a little worried that the pool is only three feet deep, but it should be fun," he said.
Jerry himself is an avid dog-lover. Living in a house with three big dogs — as well as his wife, Rebecca Romijn, twin daughters, and two cats — he knows a thing or two about having a pup around. He admits, however, that his dogs are nowhere near anything you'll see at a dog show. "We have three dogs that are terribly behaved dogs," he said of his two German Shepherds and Saint Bernard. "I love them, but they knock things over; they jump on tables. They're house trained but they're crazy." He said he could never, ever bring them to a dog show, but part of him wants to just to show them how they could really be if they tried hard enough. Don't we all, Jerry? Don't we all?
Tune in tonight on Hallmark to see what breed took home the AKC National Championship Presented by Royal Canin best in show prize and see Jerry in action. You're guaranteed a lot of beautiful dogs and some serious laughs from Jerry. In the meantime, scroll through for some snapshots of Jerry's weekend at the show.