Tonight they will be judging the Best in Show at the Westminster Dog Show in Madison Square Garden. I am always amazed at the coverage this show gets, although I am aware that dogs play a very important role in people’s lives, including ours.
We had a mixed breed Cocker-Pekapoo who weighed about seven pounds at her peak and who lived with us for seventeen years. During those years she travelled with us through probably seven residences the Navy found favor to send us to. While our adaptation was more to job description, school curricula and social contacts, Brownie’s was adaptation to the local fauna.
She chased squirrels in Virginia, birds in Rhode Island, cars in California, and eventually, monkeys in the Philippine Islands. We worried little about anything except the monkeys, since, to the best of my knowledge, she never caught anything. But the Alpha Monkey, who roamed the fence on our back yard, was not against carrying the battle to the enemy. Marietta, our maid, hardly larger than the monkey itself, would bravely brandish the Filipino short broom and throw some serious Tagalog to protect her charge.
Mary and I have had several other dogs as we were growing up and have no problem with a Password Clue asking for your Favorite Pet, but Brownie held a special place in our lives. And we are now partial to mixed breeds, rather than purebreds. But I have my favorites in the Westminster competition. I often commented when I was in the corporate world that what some Department of Division needed was “a few good weeks with a Border Collie”. And who cannot fall in love with a Golden Retriever or Labrador? As I was growing up, I was influenced by “Bob, Son of Battle”, and in fact had a collie named Lassie (who never had to find me in a well). So we know purebreds.
Last night, watching the news about the show, I was somewhat surprised to finds that Terriers are the odds-on favorite, almost every year. What really caught our attention though was the statement that neither a Lab nor Golden has ever won best of class. Mary and I have always joked that they just wouldn’t feel right about things if they won, because those other dogs seem to want the honor so much more. The commentator said there is a real flaw though in that they seem to want to turn around as they make their final show presentation. As if to ask, “What is it you want me to do now?” Or, “How am I doing?” Or, “When do I get my treat?”
Anyway, I’m sure they have more fun at the show than a Fox Terrier. They have fun under almost any condition. Do you have a favorite breed? And, if so, why?