Dogs on Broadway

If you are someone who believes that New York has been taken
over by bitches, you’re right.

Last month in Manhattan, as it has every year since Ulysses S.
Grant was in office, thousands of dogs overran Madison Square
Garden, The Pennsylvania Hotel, Battery Park and pretty much every
inch of green space south of 42nd Street, for the 128th annual
Westminster Dog Show. And get this, the bitch that won this year, a
155-pound Newfoundland, literally set herself apart from the rest
of the pack by barking.

Yes, that’s right, barking. I tell you what, I’ll go down to the
pound, get a three-legged mutt, tie a bow around his neck, do a
circuit around the Garden and have him bark at a couple times and
they can give me and my mutt our Best in Show medals.

There are more than 2,500 dogs competing in a contest to see
which is the purest inbred, which you have to admit is very
peculiar. The most abnormal part about the whole show, though, is
how the dogs are treated by their owners. For instance, to
accommodate each four-legged friend, The Pennsylvania assigns a
concierge with the specific task of meeting the dogs’ needs.

If a mastiff feels like a couple cheeseburgers at 3 a.m., the
concierge gets room service up there pronto.

If a Shih Tzu is going through an identity crisis, the concierge
will send a specially certified veterinary psychologist up to his
room. Some dogs even wear such lavish accessories as
diamond-studded doggie collars and mink sweater vests; it is as if
they raided Paris Hilton’s closet. It’s true.

Most of the time it looks like the dogs lack anything remotely
resembling “dog-like” qualities, such as licking their naughty
parts (because they can!) and random sniffing, while their owners,
usually rich people with not much else to occupy their time, walk
around wearing big foam hats and more plaid than anyone not wearing
a kilt and named McMasters should.

The dogs are pampered so much so, in fact, that the unofficial
title for the Westminster Dog Show is Where the Dogs are the
Masters and the Owners Are Their Subjects. It’s the Miss America
pageant on four legs, with one notable exception: the Westminster
bitches just bark, but the Miss America contestants bite.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. I guess I’m still amazed at all
the attention afforded to these dogs. As my idol Norm Peterson, of
Cheers fame said, “It’s a dog-eat-dog-world, and I’m wearing milk
bone underwear.”

This needs to change.

Otherwise the bitches will continue to run rampant in New York
every year, only now they’ll be walking their owners.