Who will be the top dog at this year's Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden in New York? The competition is tough. Now in its 140th year, the prestigious contest draws thousands of dogs from around the US. This year's show features 199 breeds, including seven new ones: the Bergamasco, Berger Picard, Boerboel, Cirneco dell'Etna, Lagotto Romagnolo, Miniature American Shepherd and Spanish Water Dog.

Westminster is the second-longest continuously running sporting event in the United States behind the Kentucky Derby. The first show was held in 1877.

Judges select the best of each breed and group, divided into seven categories – hound, toy, non-sporting, herding, sporting, working and terrier. The seven dogs selected as the best in their groups compete for the ultimate Best In Show prize. The winner gets a trophy and embarks on a media tour. In last year's show, a beagle named Miss P won Best In Show.

Before the dogs can be judged, they undergo a great deal of grooming. IBTimes UK takes you backstage at Madison Square Garden as pampered prima donnas are given a last-minute cut and blow-dry before they walk the runway.

Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
Skip, a Yorkshire terrier, is groomed in the benching areaMike Segar/Reuters
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
French bulldog Watson is wheeled into the ring for judgingMike Segar/Reuters
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A handler prepares an Old English sheepdog for competitionStephanie Keith/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A woman carries a Bichon frise into the judging areaTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Bichon Frise waits in the grooming areaTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
Heart the labrador puts on a winning performance in the obedience categoryMatthew Eisman/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A dog in a bag is seen in the grooming area during the first day of competitionMatthew Eisman/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A French bulldog sits in a Louis Vuitton bagTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A standard poodle is prepared for its appearance in the judging ringTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A standard poodle undergoes a complicated grooming procedureTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Bergamasco, one of the seven new breeds being judged at the 2016 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, rests before judging startsMike Segar/Reuters
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
Judging the Bichon frise finalistsTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
Spectators watch from the sidelines during the annual Westminster Kennel Club dog show at Madison Square GardenStephanie Keith/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
Handlers and their French bulldogs wait to go into the ringTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A handler carries a French bulldogTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A handler wearing a dalmatian jacket waits with a dogMatthew Eisman/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
Two Yorkshire terriers wait in the grooming areaMatthew Eisman/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A woman sits with her Yorkshire terrierStephanie Keith/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
An owner looks at her standard poodleStephanie Keith/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
An owner grooms his beagleStephanie Keith/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
Viggo, a Bergamasco named best of breed, sits at Madison Square GardenStephanie Keith/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Shetland sheepdog is ready for its close-upStephanie Keith/Getty Images
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Maltese is seen in the competition areaTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A standard poodle, ready for to be judgedTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Lhasa Apso waits in the grooming areaTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Bichon frise is groomed before the showTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Yorkshire terrier is groomed backstageTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A handler rests with her dog in the grooming areaTimothy A Clary/AFP
Westminster Kennel Club dog show 2016
A Löwchen or Little Lion Dog attends the Meet The Breeds event before the showTimothy A Clary/AFP