USA Network executives were howling with delight over the record viewership
for its coverage of the 127th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
Feb. 10 and 11.
The network averaged 4.6 million viewers each night, the most in USA's 20
years of WKC coverage, according to Nielsen Media Research data.
On Tuesday night, when Kerry blue terrier Mick was dubbed best in show, USA
scored a 4.2 household rating from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., tying a mark established
during a show in February 1997, according to USA officials.
The Feb. 11 show, though, attracted 5.3 million viewers -- USA's most ever
with the canine competition.
Averaging a 3.7 rating (4.6 million viewers, 3.2 million households), USA
scored a 9 percent gain from last year's two-night 3.4 average.
"Westminster is the annual best-of-the-best. There was tremendous interest
this year," USA senior vice president of production and sports Gordon Beck said
in a prepared statement. "The drama was intense from the first group on Monday
night through the very end."