Westminster Dog Show Winner Not Without Controversy

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As you may have heard, the Best In Show winner of the 136th Westminster Dog Show is Malachy, a 4-year-old Pekingese. There was stiff competition with other regal, beautifully moving breeds including a Doberman, a Dalmatian, an Irish Setter, and three others. There were Internet rumblings of discontent with the selection due to concerns over the breed's health and appearance.  If nothing else, dog people are passionate! Here at Baxter Boo, we believe that is a good thing.

Having watched a few videos of this perky Peke, I have to say, that I am completely smitten! This was his 115th Show Win! Thats between two and three wins every month of his life, and I am assuming he had to be full grown before he could be shown. His retirement is well earned.

Its easy to see why he is a winner. He just exudes cuteness, personality, and style, and yet he seemed humble… not too pretentious. Perhaps thats because he resembles an effective dust mop.  He just seems to make people smile!

Before you decide to go crazy and jump into a Pekingese-induced frenzy, as with any breed, its important to understand their particular needs and potential issues. Dogs sometimes experience a surge in popularity with the release of movies, commercials, and other media exposures. Unscrupulous breeders try to watch these trends to make a quick buck without thought to quality or care for the animals. Finding a reputable breeder, for any breed you may be researching,  will be covered in a blog next week.

History

 Always a favorite pet of the American and European aristocracies, the Pekingese is an ancient toy breed originating in China dating back to 800 A.D. It is one of the few breeds drawing its name from a capital city - Peking, now Beijing. Pekingese were the favored breed of the Chinese Imperial Court and were brought first to England, then from there to America. Legend attributes their origin to a mythical cross between a lion and a marmoset. The smallest Pekingese are known as "Sleeve Dogs" because they were carried in the voluminous sleeves of the Chinese nobility. The Pekingese is a long-lived, active breed that is as ideal for apartment living as it is for a palatial home.  Westminster Kennel Club website.

Health

Having Malachy receive the Best of Show award at The Westminster Dog Show, I believe, will be just what is needed to bring attention to the health concerns that plague this particular breed. According to the Pekingese Club of America, there is a crisis within the limited gene pool of Pekingese show dogs. Breeders  and judges are being educated to select dogs to correct the impaired breathing, vision, and limited mobility of these precious pups. The crisis is so severe, in fact, that there have been bans considered on the breed in the UK until the breed standards change. Therefore, Baxter Boo friends, we recommend taking careful consideration to a Pekingeses medical needs before you purchase or adopt one. Please refer to the Pekingese Health Committee of the Pekingese Club of America's Health section to see how this parent club is working towards the health of this amazing, ancient, and beautiful breed.

Video Courtesy of telegraphtv on You Tube. Photo from kobieboy8 on Wikipedia.

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