Actor John O'Hurley enamored of dogs and Thoroughbreds

The National Dog Show on NBC has become as much a fixture on Thanksgiving as pumpkin pie and those NFL games. But the dog show, sponsored by the Philadelphia Kennel Club, is actually taped ahead of time — this year, over this weekend in Reading, Pa. Actor John O'Hurley, who has hosted the show since it started airing in 2002, called it the Kentucky Derby of dog shows. "When you're watching these dogs that all are the best of their breeds in the ring there, it is like watching these Thoroughbreds walk down toward the starting gate," he said. "You get the sense that this is the best of what it could possibly be." O'Hurley, perhaps best known for playing J. Peterman on Seinfeld, said his pitch from an NBC executive to host the show started with a two-word phone call. "Woof. Woof," said O'Hurley, laughing.

Hough comes up singing

Julianne Hough says she's not returning to Dancing With the Stars next season. In an interview on Ryan Seacrest's radio show, the 20-year-old professional dancer said she needed time to concentrate on her country music career. Hough, who's nabbed two titles in four seasons on ABC's popular dance competition, said Thursday: "I really, really want to focus on the music and, you know, kind of be taken seriously a little bit." The Utah native and her celebrity partner, Cody Linley, were eliminated from the show Tuesday night. This year, she released a self-titled country album and a holiday album. Asked if she plans to try out for Fox's American Idol, Hough joked that she didn't think ABC "would be too excited about that."

Obstructing 'The View'

She never mentioned Rosie O'Donnell by name, but it was clear who host Barbara Walters was referring to when she opened Thursday's The View by complaining about "some people who have done this show" who criticize the show after leaving. Walters said some former hosts feel the need "to dump on it, maybe for their own publicity." She added: "That not only hurts me, but I resent it." Her comments came one day after O'Donnell told reporters that Walters wanted the hosts to make believe they were getting along. O'Donnell says she experienced something like "post-traumatic stress disorder" after leaving.

herald-leader wire services