Entertainment

"Who's a good boy?": We asked a judge how fictional dogs would get on at Crufts

Crufts judge Bill Lambert assesses the behaviour of pop-culture pooches 

Spike, bulldog (Tom & Jerry)

“In the cartoon, Spike often goes after Tom when his doghouse has been ruined. However, in reality, bulldogs are anything but aggressive. They’re greatly determined, though. Spike wants to be in charge and command everyone around him – personality that suits him well for Crufts. In the bulldog category, judges look for power and physicality – he has that in abundance.”

"Who's a good boy?": We worked out how fictional dogs would actually behave in real life 1

Puffy, border terrier (There’s Something About Mary)

“The idiom to be ‘like a dog with a bone’ was probably coined after a terrier – and a border terrier in particular. Puffy is feisty, determined and never admits defeat. He tries to fight Ben Stiller’s character Ted to the death – launching himself out of a window and ending up in a body cast.

“He wouldn’t know when he was beaten in the terrier category.”

"Who's a good boy?": We worked out how fictional dogs would actually behave in real life

Eddie, Parson Russell terrier (Frasier)

“At Crufts, no matter what the breed is, the dog must possess charisma, attitude and a sprinkling of star quality.

“Eddie bursts with personality – he has what it takes to be a winner. He tends to get things his own way, especially when it comes to sitting on [Frasier’s father] Martin Crane’s armchair. He’d have all of the judges wrapped around his little paw.”

Eddie Frasier

Baxter, cross terrier (Anchorman)

“Baxter is Ron Burgundy’s loyal companion and confidant – he’s intelligent, a very good listener and he often likes to chip in with advice. He’s a typical terrier: they always want to know your business and what’s going on. He’s a very active dog – I think he has miniature schnauzer in him – so he’d do extremely well in the agility part of the competition. I think he’d be a judges’ favourite.”

"Who's a good boy?": We worked out how fictional dogs would actually behave in real life 2

Preston, unknown breed (Wallace & Gromit: A Close Shave)

“Initially friendly and obedient, he becomes a manipulative, criminal mastermind. I doubt he’d feature well in competition – he’d have a tough job trying to get his own way. Coming up against so many dogs, they’d see through him. He’d be more suited to being a judge than a competitor. No doubt, he’d want to take over the whole contest.”

"Who's a good boy?": We worked out how fictional dogs would actually behave in real life 3

Snowy, wire fox terrier (The Adventures Of Tintin)

“Wire fox terriers are bright, intelligent and vocal. They also possess a real devil-may-care attitude – all attributes that make Snowy the perfect companion for any adventure. He gets himself into scrapes because he’s so fiercely loyal and likes to make himself busy. He always wants to know what others are getting up to – that’s why he’s the ideal sidekick to Tintin on his investigations.”

Snowy Tintin

Beethoven, St Bernard (Beethoven)

“St Bernards have so much presence. Not just because of their size: they dominate every room they’re in because of their giant personality. Beethoven gets himself into plenty of trouble because he’s so mischievous and clumsy, in a wholly endearing and lovable way. He may be clumsy, but he always has the best intentions. He’s impossible to ignore.”

Beethoven dog

Seymour, mongrel (Futurama)

“One for the obedience competition, where the dog must sit and stay until their owner returns. That’s what Seymour did – for years – waiting in vain for Fry to return. Unfortunately for Seymour, it’s a team event, and in this case it’d take more training of Fry than it would of the dog.”

Seymour Futurama dog
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Tickets for Crufts 2019 (7-10 March at the NEC) are on sale in October; crufts.org.uk

(Illustration: Guy Shield, other images: AllStar/screenshots)