'Pooch Pageant' provides fun, presents tough decisions
By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Glastonbury - posted Wed., Jul. 13, 2011
Canines and their owners faced stiff competition in all categories in the 29th annual Kids' Pooch Pageant, presented by the Glastonbury Parks and Recreation Department on July 11 at Hubbard Green.
Twelve-year-old Caroline Houston had two dogs in the event – Jack and Bingo – who each won categories.
The judges for the event were Bob Dibella and Mike Roberts, from the Civil Preparedness Department, and Linda Cadario, from Parks and Rec.
Jack won Best Costume by wearing a construction outfit, and Bingo performed several tricks, including a series of high jumps, to take home first place in the Best Trick category.
The Best in Show award, which is based on audience applause among the category winners, went to Jack, but not until after a run-off with Bingo.
Dibella, who has been judging the pageant for 27 years, said that was the first time the award was that close.
“We worked real hard to come up with the proper award,” Dibella said.
“We had to have both dogs [receive applause] again because it was so close,” Roberts said. “This year was the toughest year of judging because in a lot of categories, we had ties.”
Houston said Jack didn't mind wearing all the clothing.
“He actually really likes being dressed up,” she said, adding that the award was particularly special for Jack, whom she has owned for three years, since he was a dog that had something of a troubled past.
“He's a rescue,” she said. “He's been through four homes.”
Bingo was also easy to train, since he “likes to jump,” Houston said.
Other first-place awards were as follows:
The Smallest Dog award went to Victoria Stewart and her Chihuahua, Minnie.
The Largest Dog was Roman Czapiga's German shepherd, Jesse.
Diego Palaez's Siberian husky, Yankee, won Best Looking.
Best Behaved went to Ben, a mixed-breed owned by Kylia Mace.
Animal Bath & Burrow donated Bark Bars, trophies, and stuffed dog toys for the event.
“This was one of the best-organized group of dogs that came out from the kids in the town,” Dibella said. “They clearly worked hard to get their dogs to perform each particular feat.”