Ryan Hanigan's dog Vivian wins best in Australian shepherd breed at Westminster

'She went from my No. 1 bed buddy to best of breed at Westminster!!!'

There's an old saying: You lie down with dogs, one of them might flee with an award at the Westminster Kennel Club dog show. That's what has happened to catcher Ryan Hanigan of the Tampa Bay Rays. One of his dogs, Vivian (whose stage name is Copperridge What's Your Dream), was awarded a Best of Breed ribbon Monday at the world-famous dog show at Madison Square Garden.

Vivian, who turns 4 in July, beat a field of 43 Australian shepherds at Westminster. Reporter Marc Topkin, who covers the Rays for the Tampa Bay Times, relayed Hanigan's happy reaction:

"It's incredible that she went from my No. 1 bed buddy to best of breed at Westminster!!!" Hanigan told the Associated Press in a text message.

She's a champion — and also a lovie!

Hanigan, 33, is favored to become the Rays starting catcher this spring after spending most of the past seven seasons with the Cincinnati Reds, where he batted .262/.359./343 for his career. Hanigan slumped in 2013, batting .198 with a .261 slugging percentage in 260 plate appearances. His best reputation comes from defense.

Hanigan definitely isn't slumping when it comes to dog breeding, although the last time he made news in that realm, it was a scary time. Quince, another big-time show winner among the Aussie shepherd breed, ran off in 2012 after being startled by fireworks. Quince, of no relation to Vivian, was found. When it comes to dogs, everything is coming up Hanigan.

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David Brown edits Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at rdbrown@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

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