BROCKVILLE, ONT -- A Brockville dog is currently sitting at the top of his group in the America's favourite pet contest.

Rufus is leading his group in the round-robin and looking to make it into the quarterfinals on Friday.

Owner Leigh Bursey, a Brockville councillor, says Rufus is used to being in the spotlight.

"He did some modelling last year for a local calendar that was very popular and I get a lot of comments on how charming and cute he is," Bursey said with a laugh.

"I was looking for something fun that we could do and I stumbled across this competition and I said lets give it a try, see what happens and sure enough not only did it take off but he’s gaining popularity and notoriety as we speak."

The contest started earlier this month and part of the grand prize is a spread in Dogster magazine.

"He gets $5,000 in American treats and toys and all sorts of fun stuff like that and there's a cash prize as well which we’ve agreed that a portion of the proceeds will be going back into the community," Bursey said.

“It’s kind of cool, just to get the distinction of being America's favourite pet from Brockville, Ontario."

Voting for Rufus is free and limited to one vote every 24 hours. People can also pay for votes, with proceeds going to charity.

"The charitable votes go to an organization called PAWS which is an American organization that is actually a wildlife retreat that takes animals in from less than positive atmospheres and helps them," said Bursey.

The hope is Rufus will stay at the top of his group until voting ends Thursday at midnight.

"Right now, he's number one but that could change tonight. Someone could come in and put down $500 for votes or something to win the competition but my hope is that we see this through and tomorrow night we’ll get to find out," said Bursey.

“He really is the world's greatest dog. I’ve had my challenges over the years and he’s the first pet I've ever had that I've loved this much and he is a good guy. He's real handsome....He doesn't do much but I like him."

You can vote for Rufus here.