Watching the 2020 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, I was stunned to find another poodle as the Best in Show. I don’t know why. It has wonderful characteristics, and they sure do go to enough trouble to make that breed stand out. And he’s not even French! Oh? Didn’t know it was originally German? POODLE comes from the German Pudelhund or Pude which in English means “puddle” or “to splash about.” The word Hund in German means “dog.” This dog is a retriever.
The French also used this smart dog as a guide dog, guard dog, and military dog. With their coat being moisture-resistant (which helps with swimming), someone thought it was a good idea to help the dogs move through water more efficiently and gave them a cut with patches of hair left on the body to protect the poodle’s vital organs and joints from the cold water. Yet they failed to cover their privates.
But, why, why did they make them look so preposterous? Once they gave them this cut and they looked so dolled-up with their bouffant hair, they started performing at circuses pulling wagons for entertainers. What a low blow from once being a top dog. This dog show is the dog Oscars or the dog Superbowl. These show dogs perform at champion-level and these poor poodles prance around looking like this. Do you think they know?
My family owned several from one breed who made Best in Show three times at Westminster: the Sealyham terrier. It is a Welch breed. I bet you haven’t heard of them. They have almost have become extinct but are making a comeback. Thank goodness.
Other countries have their designated official dog breed, too. Here is a list of the countries: Switzerland, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Norway, Cuba, Republic of Condo, Brazil, and the Netherlands.
Can you match them with the dog breed? Rhodesian Ridgeback, Fila Brasileiro, Coton de Tulear, St. Bernard, Norwegian Elkhoud, Besenji, Keeshond, and the Havanese.
What about the United States? We, too, have a few states who have their official state dog. Same game. This time states: Alaska, Delaware, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Match these dog breeds with the states above: Plott Hound, Blue Tick Coonhound, American Water Spaniel, Catahoula Leopard Dog, Chenook, Boykin Spaniel, American Foxhound, Golden Retriever, Boston Terrier, Great Dane, Blue Lacy, Alaskan Malamute, Chesapeake Bay Retriever.
Here are your answers: Switzerland – St. Bernard; Madagascar – Coton de Tulear; Zimbabwe – Rhodesian Ridgeback; Norway – Norwegian Elkhound; Cuba – Havanese; Republic of Congo -Besenji; Brazil -Fila Brasileiro; Netherlands – Keeshond
In the states? Alaska – Alaskan Malamute; Delaware – Golden Retriever; Louisiana – Catahoula Leopard dog; Maryland – Chesapeake Bay Retriever; Massachusetts – Boston Terrier; New Hampshire – Chenook; North Carolina – Plott Hound; Pennsylvania – Great Dane; South Carolina – Boykin Spaniel; Tennessee – Blue Tick Coonhound; Texas – Blue Lacy; Virginia – American Foxhound; and Wisconsin – American Water Spaniel.
Georgia has submitted two entries for a designated state dog – one was the Golden Retriever and most recently – can you guess the other? Here’s a hint: Some people call them JUNKYARD DOGS.
What would be your choice?

Lee St. John, a member of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, is a No.1 Amazon ranked humorous author. Look for her on Facebook, Twitter (@LeeStJohnauthor), and her blog at Her new release, “SHE’S A KEEPER! Cockamamie Memoirs from a Hot Southern Mess” can be found on