Tails magazine presents...

Greatest American Dog, Episode 1

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2008 at 5:01 pm

The CBS reality show Greatest American Dog premiered Thursday July 10 at 8pm ET/PT. For those of you who, like me, don’t have a tv or those of you who prefer going out Thursday evenings instead of waiting at home for a television show, CBS uploads full episodes of the show that are ready for viewing no later than 48 hours after the show aired on TV.

To win the title of Greatest American Dog and $250,000, 12 competitors train their dogs to perform unique tasks in addition to the dog displaying the traits of the Greatest American Dog which include intelligence, obedience, teamwork, and courage. Each week one human & dog pair is eliminated by the three judges: Victoria Stillwell, Wendy Diamond, and Allan Reznik. Zoologist Jarod Miller hosts.

All 12 humans and 12 dogs live and train in the Canine Academy. It appeared to be a many-roomed mansion, but of course the contestants and dogs had to share rooms; it wouldn’t be a reality show without unnecessary drama. There is one single room, the Dog Bone Suite, a luxurious suite stocked with any and all dog luxuries you could think of, as well as big plush bed for the human of the dog who has won the privilege of staying in the suite for a week. This week, a few rounds of musical chairs for dogs determined who got the Dog Bone Suite, and also the winner gets to choose a pair to live outside in the doghouse which is, in fact, a large doghouse. The first winner was JD and his Border Collie Galaxy. JD choose to banish David, an older Manhattan doctor, and his Jack Russell Elvis. This power of banishment will surely instigate spats in the future.

The main challenge was a Best of Show competition that set out to test the basic skills of the human & dog duos. The participants were required to form 3 teams of 4, but only one person would ultimately be eliminated. JD and Galaxy performed well again, Laura and Preston (a Pomeranian) delivered what the judges called the best performance, Travis and Presley (a Boxer) did well, Elan and Kenji (a Giant Schnauzer) literally danced beautifully together, Ron and Tillman (an English Bulldog) impressed the judges with Tillman’s skateboarding skills. However, not everyone did well. Brandy could hardly get Beacon (a Miniature Schnauzer) to follow her commands, Beth Joy had little control over her Mix (Chihuahua, Labrador Retriever, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, Shih-Tzu and Pomeranian) Bella Starlet, and Michael overshadowed and frightened Ezzie (a Boston Terrier). In my opinion Brandy was the weakest, but alas she gets another week to train her adorable dog. If you’d like to watch the episode for yourself to find out who was eliminated, then don’t read the next sentence! Michael and Ezzie were sent home.

Next week, the competitors will tackle the obedience challenge. I have feeling that while talented, Tillman will have trouble not eating food that is placed in front of him. Perhaps he’ll surprise me. So far, I think Laura & Preston and Elan & Kenji are the women to watch while JD & Galaxy and Ron & Tillman are the men to watch.

-Amanda Giffi

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