A pampered pooch called Philippe is the country's top dog.

The giant schnauzer won the best in show award at Crufts 2008 at the weekend.

It was third time lucky for Philippe, who belongs to Kevin Cullen, from St Leonards.

It was the third time he had reached the final of the world's biggest dog show.

The seven-year-old pedigree, whose show name is Ch Jafrak Philippe Olivier, made it through this time after winning the working dog section.

A delighted Mr Cullen said: "It's an absolute dream.

Philippe actually loves doing it.

It means the world to me, it really does.

"Philippe is a real happy-golucky dog.

"He's a wonderful pet and a brilliant show dog."

Almost 23,000 dogs and 2,000 breeds took part in the four-day competition at the NEC in Birmingham.

They were judged on their pedigree, obedience and agility.

Philippe beat top dogs from six other groups in the final to take the overall prize.

The sell-out audience of 6,000 cheered when it was announced Philippe was top dog.

Judge Clare Coxall said: "He came out from that arch and he came in and he just looked as if he owned it."

Mrs Coxall, who breeds poodles and is a retired veterinary nurse and dog trainer, said: "He's got muscles on top of muscles.

"He's in ace order and fantastic top athletic condition.

"I looked into his eyes and he sold himself to me and he knew he was doing it."

Mr Cullen and Philippe received a £100 prize and a replica trophy.

The best in show runner-up award was won by Hermioni, a samoyed owned by Lisa Bobrowski, from Woking, Surrey.

The first Crufts was held in 1891 by Charles Cruft, a dog food salesman. It was taken over by the Kennel Club in 1942.

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