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–Award Presented at AKC National Championship presented by Royal Canin –


Alan Kalter and Dr. Chris Lezotte were presented with the 2016 AKC Breeder of the Year award for their HappyLegs Bullmastiffs at the AKC National Championship presented by Royal Canin on Saturday, December 17, 2016.  The annual award honors those breeders who have made an impact on their breed and dedicated their lives to improving the health, temperament and quality of purebred dogs.


“We are proud to honor Alan Kalter and Dr. Chris Lezotte with the 2016 AKC Breeder of the Year award,” said Dennis B. Sprung, AKC President and CEO. “The HappyLegs prefix has been associated with top quality Bullmastiffs in the United States and their influence on the breed will be seen for years to come.”


One honoree is chosen from each of the seven groups: Sporting, Hound, Working, Terrier, Toy, Non-Sporting, and Herding. From those seven, one Group winner is selected as “AKC Breeder of the Year” during the AKC National Championship presented by Royal Canin, which was held this year in Orlando, Fla. December 17th and 18th.  Presentation highlights are available on


As the 2016 AKC Breeder of the Year recipient, Alan Kalter and Dr. Chris Lezotte will be honored with a commission from a canine portraitist to memorialize a prominent dog from their kennel and their names will be inscribed on a perpetual trophy, both of which will be displayed at the AKC headquarters in New York City.


About HappyLegs Bullmastiffs


Chris and Alan have bred or owned 160 titleholders; these include specialty winners, Best in Show winners, Westminster winners, top producers and five generations of group winners. But as they wind down their breeding program after 30 years in the sport, they hope to be remembered not for their dogs’ accomplishments, but for their efforts to incorporate soundness, structure, and “happy legs” into the Bullmastiff breed for generations to come.


All seven Group honorees were presented with medallions during the show on December 17, 2016.  Group winners included:

Sporting Group: Dorothea (Dot) Vooris Simberlund, Fieldfine German Shorthaired Pointers
Hound Group: Ray and Jana Brinlee, Jaraluv Scottish Deerhounds
Working Group: Alan Kalter & Dr. Chris Lezotte, HappyLegs Bullmastiffs
Terrier Group: Joan Huber, Blythewood Miniature Schnauzers
Toy Group: Max E. Hurd, Hurd’s Chihuahuas
Non-Sporting Group: Susan and Gary Carr, Salishan Tibetan Terriers
Herding Group: Terry Miller and Dominique Dube, Deja Vu/Popsakadoo Briards


For more information on all of the AKC Breeder of the Year Group honorees, click here.

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