Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

Once again, Deadspin has deputized Barry Petchesky as its professional pooch reporter to cover the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show mess. Here is his day two report.

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

This is year three of Fear and Loathing at the Dog Show for me, and though it's a blast to cover every time, I do worry about coming up with fresh angles. It's to the point where I'm hoping a dog relieves itself on the show floor, or a Rottweiler mauls its handler, just so I have something to write about.

But I've learned two things in three years of doing this. First, that Westminster is the only place on earth outside of the Player's Ball it's OK to use the word bitches in casual conversation. (Sample exchange: "I guess she wants to look at the bitches separately. The bitches will be on soon." "Yeah, there are some great bitches today.")

Second, it's that the Deadspin commentariat does not tire of jokes about bitches. I'm not sure if it's more misogyny or immaturity, but a good bitch joke still brings down the house around here. So to steal a joke, I'm willing to say these dogs are the biggest bitches to hit MSG since Stephon Marbury.

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

Get your hunting caps on.

If you want bitching, just talk to any owner after their dog doesn't win. Just like every man in prison is innocent, every owner knows why the judge didn't pick their dog. What I heard today:

-The judge only liked certain color dogs.
-The judge didn't like female dogs.
-The owner wasn't a "name" owner.
-The judge didn't choose it because it went first.

But the biggest bitch of all on Tuesday was this British asshole, who I immediately dubbed Lord Pilkington Withersnatch.

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

See how he looks like he's about to have a heart attack any second? That's because he's way too intense for someone who gets to play with a Samoyed all day. I first noticed him when he yelled at a small child who dared to try to pet his dog.

But it gets worse. You know how most handlers will keep their dog's attention by holding out a snack, before eventually giving it to the animal? Well Lord Withersnatch's novel technique consists of getting the dog to focus by whipping out a treat, then tossing it beyond the dog's reach so it just stands there, staring at it. You can slap a kid for all I care, but when you start taunting dogs, then it's on.

Lord Withersnatch's dog didn't win its breed, and I'm afraid when they get home he's going to tear into her like Chris Brown after Rihanna gave him Jay-Z's herpes.

Westminster always gets a little trying late on the second day, and some handlers just nod off where they are. The dogs look dog tired too.

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

But your intrepid reporter soldiers on, despite the oppressive heat and smell of human sweat and (I hope) dog waste. But I fear it's getting to me.

I find myself transfixed and not a little disturbed by this Italian Spinone. I couldn't put my finger on it then, but seeing the photo now I figured it out. Look at it. IT HAS HUMAN EYES!

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

I wonder if I've been around dogs too long, because I'm outwardly ignoring the people and talking directly to the animals. "Look this way, Bowser. That's it…smile…excellent. Good luck today. And stay out of Northern Virginia. I heard Mike Vick's getting out soon."

It's easy for the mind to play tricks on you here, but to prove I'm not crazy, here's a gallery I like to call, "Owners Who Look Like Their Dogs."

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

This last one is really unfortunate.

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

Some stray observations:

• Brussels Griffons really do look like Ewoks. (Yub nub!)

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

• I like to see what other media organizations are covering the event. I saw both Telemundo and Univision, and both were filming the Chihuahuas. Come on, guys.

• Yesterday's picture of the Wirehaired Dachshund lying in a not-unattractive girl's lap generated the most positive feedback. So in an attempt to give you what you want, here's…a Pomeranian in a middle-aged man's lap.

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

But I think it's time to call it a year at Westminster. As always, it's been a magical time interacting with thousands of the best dogs in the world. And though some are big, some small, some smart, some dumb, every single one is wonderful in its own way.

Except this ugly bastard. I hope it gets hit by a truck.

Back To Bitches: Tales From Westminster

Barry Petchesky is a freelance journalist living in New York City.


Read: Day 1 Here