Sadie the Scotty: triple threat, or spectacular dog. Sadie the Scotty took her place as the 8th Scottie to win best in show, and the 45th terrier to take home the cup at Westminster, but not before protesters tried their best to make their mark.
Just before judge Elliott Weiss chose Sadie, two nicely dressed women entered the ring carrying large signs that read ‘Mutts Rule’ and ‘Breeders Kill Shelter Dogs Chances’. The women belong to the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA, however the group says the women acted alone on their own behalf. PETA supports the women’s protest.
Security guards led the women away as the crowd of more than 15,000 people booed them. The PETA members, Dana Sylvester and Hope Round were charged with criminal trespass by police.
The truth of the matter is that almost every single person who owns and trains show dogs is an advocate for rescue dogs and therapy dogs. I know this first hand. Two years ago, I was in a horrible car accident that left me unable to even play with my children for a very long time. Falling into a deep depression, I felt very lonely, because my small children didn’t understand why I couldn’t hold them. That was until I met the dog that would change my life.
Lost and afraid, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel came to our home, and I fell in love. We quickly found the owners, who were crying as they searched for their dog. I knew at that very moment what I needed. I needed a therapy dog.
After researching the breed and learning what the pros and cons of owning a Cavalier was, I started looking for rescues. There were no Cavaliers in our area that were available for rescue, so my next step was to find a breeder.
I know that breeders only keep dogs that they think will win or that are successful breeding stock and they ‘cull’ the rest. In many cases, this doesn’t mean ‘kill’, it means ‘get rid of’, whether that means they sell them or give them away under a strict ‘no breeding’ contract.
There were none in the Portland Metro Area, but I did find one outside of Salem, and after hearing my story, they were glad to give me a therapy dog to help me through my treatment as long as I promised to have her spayed. Wilma is a red Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and I was in love with her from the moment I met her. She has become not only my therapy dog, but part of our family, and I will always be grateful to the breeder who gave her to me.
The event at Westminster gives you a great opportunity to talk to your children about this issue. Take in a local dog show and learn about what goes into them. Visit a shelter and learn about why dogs end up there. Visit a kennel and learn what they do there. Talk about the differences between puppy mills and responsible dog breeding.
If you own a dog, you understand the love that dogs and owners have for each other, and the great lengths that dog owners go for their beloved pooch.
For more information on local breeders, shows, and activities, contact the Dog Fanciers Association of Oregon.
I understand the importance of rescue dogs, as we already own a Greater Swiss Mountain Dog/Border Collie mix that we rescued from the animal shelter when she was just a puppy.
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