Who Will Be Top Dog?

stump
Oldest Westminster Winner, Stump. Photo by Brent Humphreys

And good night ... catch up with your tomorrow night for round two and naming of the Top Dog!

Good on the Shar-Pei ...

9:16 - We're rooting for the bulldog here. Let's see which one will win.

Did you ever read our interview with Stump, the Sussex spaniel and oldest ever winner of Westminster?  http://aarp.us/iaCf6p Photo on the right.

8:57 - Best name of the night, hands down from the Chow Chow: Liontamer's Dial 1-800-Hotstuff

8:53 - Boston terrier:  Square-head and graphic markings? Sounds like a couple ex-boyfriends

8:39 - A Pekingese named Malachy wins Toy group. A Sino-Irish pact gone good!

8: 37 - The parade of Toys ... judge is making his decision. Which will win? The Pom keeps doing 360s.

8: 33 - I thought he called that fox terrier "Fang" but it was "Fame" .... I like Fang better.

8:30 - I'm glad the announcer explained that family Shih-Tzu should have shorter hair!

8:27 - We're back ... The commercial break took us longer than we thought. The beagles found a scent and there was no stopping them!

7:47 - Scottish Deerhound wins the hound group. Cue the bagpipes!

7:46 - OK, here we go. Calls the 15 " beagle first. (Remember: I'm beagle biased :) Then the wire-haired Dachshund, greyhound ... who will win best of group?

7:44 - How many times do you think a whippet-Devo joke has been made?

7:41 - Just a non sequitur: Can you imagine being a tourist in NYC and you're staying in the same hotel with these dogs? Just sayin'

7:39 - Read this great story from a few years ago about how the Best in Show judge is sequestered until blue ribbon time. http://www.nytimes.com/2004/02/11/sports/othersports/11DOGS-EARLY.html

7:35 - PBGVs not to be confused with CBGB ...  The PBGVs named is Cupid. Awe and on Valentine's Day.

7:33 - Kudos to the handlers wearing and running in skirts.

7:29 -  Harrier No. 5? Is that anything like Channel No. 5?

7:23 pm - Smooth Dachshund? You know he's good with the ladies ...

7:22 pm - Gotta love a wiener dog named Cheese!

7:20 pm - Blue-tick hound? ... never bothered to look at the color of ticks.

7:19 pm -  2,000,000 olfactory cells? That's a lot of Kleenex!

7:15 pm  - Green beans and baby carrots as treats?

UPDATED: 7:14 pm CST -  Shhh. The beagles are on ...  Teddy the 13" beagle is too adorable.

This time each year the dog lover in me obsesses over the Westminster Dog Show.  I don't know what it is about the show: the pageantry, the random trivia from the wannabe-golf-commentator- talking-at-a-whisper announcers or the elegant names of the sassy canines. Whatever it is, I'm parked for two days in front of the TV watching, with my two rescued beagles. (WARNING: I'm beagle biased.) Yes, I'm seeking counseling, but in the meantime, let's bring you up to speed.

The two-day event begins today with the best in breed and group, and will culminate tomorrow night with the crowning of Top Dog.

I love the thrill of it. I love guessing which dog is going to go maverick and just bark off cue. Then there's the pooch that walks over to another to sniff some rear end. It always happens. So thrilling. And the look on the handler's face is priceless.

This year there six new breeds being judged: the Boykin Spaniel, Bluetick Coonhound, Redbone Coonhound, Cane Corso, Leonberger and Icelandic Sheepdog. Think when the Olympics added golf and rugby to the Summer Games "sports."

What is it about our dogs that make us act like kids again? Perhaps it's the innocence of dogs; they love you for who you are and don't judge you for your faults. My mantra is a pithy bumper sticker: Wag More, Bark Less.

I'll be updating this blog tonight when they do the first half of best in breed. I hope you can tune in, too.

PS: The poop on the street is that the beagle's BFF is judging Best in Show. Just putting it out there.

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