SAN DIEGO, Calif. (CBS 8) - It's getting pretty hairy in New York, where thousands of pooches are vying to be top dog. News 8 met the owners of a new breed in the competition - the Norwegian buhund.

Diane Lewis is used to showing off her buhunds.

"They are really a smart breed and very active," she said.

They're dogs that mind their manners, until they decide minding manners isn't much fun.

After 134 years of competition, Norwegian buhunds are finally welcome among the elite, prim and proper dogs of the Westminster.

Years ago, when Diane first took her buhunds to herding competitions, the judges would ask "What kind of dog is that because they had never seen one before," she said.

That changed in a hurry when her little buhund named Star won an award for a record-setting 12 titles.

Diane's longtime boyfriend Neil Undheim grew up in Norway. His father was a sheepherder and Neil says buhunds have always been great family dogs.

"They were very good with children, and when you sent them off to get the sheep they go up and get them up in the hills and bring them back down, and the cows," Neil said.

Old habits die hard, and Diane says the working dog's working dog might just surprise us all and win the Westminster.

"Why not, I mean, why not?" Diane said.

If you are considering buying a Norwegian buhund, you're going to want to make sure you have a house with a lot of land. This is definitely not an apartment dog, because they need lots of exercise and they like to bark.