The juxtaposition of poorly shaped humans and their beauty show dogs is something no one can fail to notice at a dog show.
Why are dog show people so often poor physical specimens?
The answer, I think, is that these are people who are self-selecting. They are people who are looking for a "sport" in which no physical exercise is required. In fact, it is a sport in which no knowledge is required. All you need is a small checkbook to buy the dog (even the best dog will be cheaper than a very bad used car) and then you brush out the dog and learn how to walk it around the ring and stack it. If you have enough money, you can even hire a professional handler to actually do that; that's how Bill Cosby and a thousand others do it.
Dog showing is also a hobby which attracts a lot of retirees or other people who do not work fulltime jobs. With age, often comes width.
The funniest juxtaposition in the world of dogs may be the fact that so many of the people attracted to "the fancy" are decidedly unfancy themselves. Often these are middle- to lower-middle class folks with very prosaic roots whose heritage is evident in their taste for double-knit pants suits and clip on ties. These are folks who toil in anonymous jobs and who have now gravitated to dogs as a way of deriving reflected social status. Yes, their own background may be as common as a turnip top, but did you know that Prince Tuckahoe of Heaven's Gate has seven champions in his pedigree!
Crufts dachshunds in the ring, 2005
Crufts contestant waiting, 2005
Crufts corridor, 1967
Crufs hopefuls waiting their turn, 2001
Crufts judge, 2005
Arriving at Crufts, 1971
- Related Link
** The Comedy of Dog Shows