A four year old Pekingese, called Malachy, won the hearts of the judges at the 136th annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York according to USA Today. The small Pekingese, who looks “like a (regal) cross between a slow-moving hair ball and an overgrown hamster”, beat some stiff competition with more than 2000 dogs around. Malachy is currently No. 2 dog in the USA and can look forward to a life of chasing squirels in the yard after winning 115 best in shows in his career according to his owner and handler David Fitzpatrick.
People, who are new to dog shows, are often surprised about the subjectivity of the judging. But according to David Frei, long time announcer of the Westminster show, “It’s the nature of the show”. Three of the top six dogs didn’t even make it out of breed judging, including the No. 1 dog, which is unusal.
Malachy was clearly the star of the show and was also one of the few who could celebrate his succes sitting in the trophy he won.
The Pekingese is one of the most famous dogs in China. Apparently, this is due to it’s resemblance to the Chinese Guardian Lions. According to ancient chinese tradition, these lions were held to have magical protective properties that made them common figures in front of temples and palaces.
The Pekingese, with it’s fur coat and unique fact bears a resemblance to the lions, and thus the lion’s properties were transferred on to the dog as well. Also called “Foo Dogs” or Lion dogs, they were said to be guardian spirits.
For over 2000 years, they were held to be sacred by the Chinese emperors and were thus accorded special privileges.
Pekingese dogs are extremely childlike, thus enforcing their status as toy dogs. However, they are very protective of the person whom they consider to be their master. Their behavior may be likened to a dog that doesn’t quite realize that it’s a dog and doesn’t want the same rules to apply!
A left over trait from it’s history in the Chinese palace maybe?