The finals, held in San Diego, brough together the seven regional finalists from across the country. Junior, Peanut, Tiger, Sam, Voodoo, Carolina and last year’s defending champion, Chalupa, collectively beat more than 1,200 others for a chance to race in front of thousands of cheering Chihuahua and baseball fans at PETCO Park in San Diego.
A carnival-like atmosphere surrounded the race, which took place on a 1/18th furlong (35-foot-long) track and was over in just a few seconds. Tiger, who does agility training and competes in "fly ball" in his spare time, covered the track in just 3.3 seconds, narrowly beating former champion Chalupa of Indiana.
Tiger’s owner, Cathy Smith, said he had been doing a lot of training since the regional finals and had picked up nearly 2 pounds of muscle in the previous 3 months. Tiger also received a trophy for his efforts, a PETCO gift card and a year’s supply of Royal Canin Chihuahua food.
The Chihuahua is the 11th most popular purebred dog breed in the United States, according to the American Kennel Club. Measuring six to eight inches at the withers and weighing in at 2-1/2 to 4-1/2 pounds, the dogs are considered the smallest and lightest dogs in the world.