FOR THE DOGS
Tell me, are you running a can-cover contest for Alpo? Your Feb. 24 issue has to rank as one of your dumbest. Right smack in the midst of exciting basketball and hockey seasons, you've got a shaggy Rinny-Tin-Tin on your cover. If there's a "big itch" in the dog show world, let's keep the fleas in Madison Square Garden.
Wow! I've just read your Feb. 24 issue, and I am still in a state of shell shock. Dogs? Horses? Glamorized karts? Tugs-of-war? Wrestling? Frisbeeing? Surely you jest. This isn't the SI I've been eagerly awaiting each Thursday for years. Hurry up, baseball! Who says it's not the national game?
PHILIP F. SMITHKA
White Plains, N.Y.
As if bridge weren't enough.
Regarding two recent cover photographs, we prefer the dames over the dogs.
JIM ALGEO, GREG GODEC, MARK BISHOP, GARY MANN, RICHARD HACKETT
Your Feb. 24 issue was perfect for my new puppy.
THOMAS F. STIENSTRA
Palo Alto, Calif.
After reading the article (Lowdown on the Top Dogs), I'd say it was a great shaggy-dog story.
I enjoyed your article on Westminster. However, I think you should have made it even clearer that Captain Arthur J. Haggerty was ringside judging, which is a pretty precarious practice, even for one as experienced as Haggerty. Your article made all of the judges look ignorant because they didn't have the sense to pick Haggerty's ringside choice. You can tell much by movement, but there is a lot hidden under those gorgeous coats and inside the mouths that only the judge who has gone over the dog could know.
Winning best-in-show at Westminster is a very big honor. It would be sad to have any of this esteem taken away from the Old English sheepdog by Haggerty's remarks.
MRS. C. M. SUNDERLAND
I suggest that if Captain Haggerty finds a way to keep an Old English's muzzle clean (barring a face-wash after every meal), he let the world in on the secret. Of course, Haggerty would prefer the miniature pinscher—neither has much hair.
I agree with Captain Haggerty that temperament should play an important role in the decision of whether or not to breed a specific animal. After his discourses on the importance of temperament and the "aggressiveness" of the Old English sheepdog, he states that Ch. Sir Lancelot of Barvan had a "dirty muzzle" and adds, "a dog like that should not win Westminster." The fact that Sir Lancelot did not take a bite out of Haggerty is testimony to his good nature.