YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Every dog has its day, but the wire fox terrier has it twice

November 23, 2012|By Matt Pearce

Well, there you have it: A record-breaking dog.

For the first time in history, a breed captured back-to-back “Best In Show” titles at the National Dog Show on Thursday in Philadelphia: a wire fox terrier named Sky.

The 4-year-old won the 1,500-dog competition, continuing the reign started last year by another wire fox terrier, Eira.

Thursday’s show was broadcast by NBC to a turkey-drowsed holiday audience, and millions would be further basted by waves of golf-hush commentary on the usual array of bizarre, beautiful dogs: A Great Dane that looked bigger than its handler, a bearded collie that seemed more coat than animal, dogs sometimes more high-end sports car than man's best friend.

Sky -- owned by Torie Steele of Malibu, who also co-owns last year’s winning wire fox terrier, and Victor Malzoni of Sao Paolo, Brazil -- has a tube-shaped head, fur-fattened legs and paws that seemed to barely touch the ground when running.

Best in Show judge Vicki Abbott drifted across the competition’s blue carpet in a long, imposing black dress as she scrutinized each dog’s body, gait and coat, while the trainers -- themselves, arguably, sometimes as unusual as the animals -- fussed with, prodded, and bribed their partners with treats to behave.

Abbott then settled on Sky as the winner.

“She has a keen expression and that dense, wiry coat,” Abbott said, according to a release from the National Dog Show. “The handler let her show herself and she performed.” Sky's handler, Gabriel Rangel of Rialto, added, "She has a beautiful head, and her face is unbelievable.”

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times’ Patt Morrison in February, owner Steele said: “I didn’t get into [terriers] wanting to show. I just got into them as a pet. One that I loved dearly died, and the [breeder] wouldn’t let me have the new one unless I agreed to show it.”

She added, “I [was] in the fashion business, and to my eye the fox terrier is one of the most fashionable dogs, because of their angles and design.”


'John Doe Duffel Bag' arrested

Friends' wish for teen shooting victim: 'Rest in paradise'

Safety breaches alleged at Washington radioactive waste plant

Los Angeles Times Articles