The dogs won it all.
In a stunning victory, Olate Dogs took the $1 million grand prize and headlining act in Las Vegas in the finale of "America's Got Talent" on Thursday.
Olate Dogs edged out runner-up and very funny comedian Tom Cotter and third-place earth harpist William Close, both of whom have been the judges favorites from day one. Rounding out the finalists were dancing painter David Garibaldi and his CMYK's in fourth, sand artist Joe Castillo in fifth, and dancing group The Untouchables in sixth.
The crowd erupted when Nick Cannon announced the entertaining dog act as the winner — and judge Sharon Osbourne was so thrilled, she rushed onto the stage to give the Olates and their dogs a hug.
Osbourne isn't the only one head over heels for talented dogs. Olate Dogs took the American crown in the same year Britain's Got Talent gave its title to Ashleigh Buter and her dog Pudsey.
Thursday night, the final spotlight belonged to a whole pack of dogs and the father-son trainers, Richard and Nicholas Olate.
"What a phenomenal night," Howard Stern said as the confetti fell.
The final results brought a gratifying end to a very long seventh season that at times stumbled during the auditions, especially a lackluster Las Vegas elimination round.
Judge Howard Stern said it best to open the finale Thursday night: "When we first started I thought, 'I don't know -- are we going to find anybody; has America
What AGT found was talent that didn't end with a fifth straight singer taking the title. It was the first win by a non-singer since Season 2, when ventriloquist Terry Fator took the grand prize of $1 million and headlining act in Vegas.
Before the results portion, the two-hour finale gave all six finalists one last shot in the spotlight, performing duets with established superstars. Unfortunately, it was mostly a miss-fest as the bulk of the finalists were severely dwarfed in their star matchups.
Rapper Flo Rida took the stage with Garibaldi, but the cameras stay trained on Flo Rida for 95 percent of the performance and a very small stage kept Garibaldi confined to too small a space. Pity. We would have loved to see these two really perform together.
Close fared better. He had the spotlight alone to open his act with One Republic. Even when the band kicked into gear, Close still got camera time, so it felt like a genuine duet — one that Close rocked, proving he belongs on a big stage.
Once again, we saw too little of the acts that have brought us back week after week as singer Frankie J performed with the Untouchables and Olate Dogs. The adorable dogs sped through three tricks before Frankie J hit the stage with the Untouchables relegated to background dancers. What a shame to downplay the show's talent.
Cotter almost redeemed the duets with a roasting of the judges. A minute into his bit, Joan Rivers joined him on stage and told him he was being "too nice" and proceeded to show him how to do it. She got her laughs but took precious time away from the comedian that has won us over. Even shoved into the scripted duet, Cotter delivered the best joke of the night, saying Howard Stern looks like the bastard child of Joey Ramone and Big Bird. Hilarious.
At least the duet finale brought things full circle and gave us the Castillo we loved best this season. Castillo told a moving story with his sand creations, as the former members of the PS22 Chorus sang "Edge of Glory." A perfect way to wrap up the acts.
Also performing in the final was Grammy artist Ne-Yo singing "Let Me Love You Until You Learn to Love Yourself," Blue Man Group, Justin Bieber singing "As Long as You Love Me" with Big Sean and Bay Area natives Green Day.