'Greatest American Dog' recap: Salvador Doggy

Americandog_lAs if having to watch Greatest American Dog instead of the Olympics wasn’t painful enough, last night’s episode featured the pups painting. Why do dogs need to paint, and why do judges need to critique their work? Even I, who lost her s— (in a good way) when she read that straight-to-DVD Anacondas 3: The Offspring stars David Hasselhoff, couldn’t find the joy in this. Here’s what happened:

- With Brandy gone, Travis was finally free to make googly eyes at Laura, though Laura appeared to be putting the moves on Travis’ Boxer, Presley.

- Dog Bone Challenge: The week’s theme was intelligence, and the dogs had to find their way around a three-wall structure to a plate of food. Though Beth Joy was confident that mutt Bella Starlet would win — Bella Starlet once took an IQ test and she was smarter than Beth Joy — Bill’s Brittany, Star, did it in the fastest time, 8.34 seconds. Bill repaid Teresa for her kindness last week by offering her the Suite and the leg-up in the Best in Show Challenge — painting a picture that best represents the bond you have with your dog, with only the dog being allowed to actually apply the paint. Before we move onto that, can we just discuss how whipped Laurie’s Maltese, Andrew, is? He wouldn’t leave her side for chicken and bacon. Is he the most well-trained dog or far too codependent?

- Painting was difficult for everyone, but really, it tested thehuman’s intelligence more than the dog’s. My early favorites, Laura andPomeranian Preston (pictured), struggled not because he’s a tiny dog,but because Laura had him nudge over an entire bottle of paint thatflooded underneath her stencil. To deflect attention from her failure,Laura threw Beth Joy under the bus for putting sponges on BellaStarlet’s paws — which made her yelp a couple of times. Bella Starletis a rescue dog, who has issues with her front paws being touched,period. Travis later came to Beth Joy’s defense, assuring the judgesthat she was protective of Bella Starlet and had simply beenhelping her through her phobia. (Think Laura gave Travis her numberafter that?) Laurie and Andrew and JD and English Pointer Border CollieGalaxy rounded out the bottom three because Laurie was unimaginativeand JD didn’t realize that he put the letter stencils on Galaxy’sjacket backwards. (Honestly, I can’t blame him for trying to pretendthat he’d wanted her to roll out FUN as NUF as part of his playtheme. In front of judges, you’re supposed to pretend mistakes wereintentional. Sometimes, at least.) In the end, Laura and Preston gotthe boot, while Teresa and Border Collie Leroy, who had a "dog artinstructor," took Best in Show. (Who bought Teresa’s explanation thatthe moon represented Leroy’s ability to send her over it when hebarked? PLEASE.)

So, what was your favorite moment from this episode: Galaxy kissingJD during the elimination ceremony (nice to see her do somethingspontaneous), Travis admitting to the judges that he’s acommitment-phobe (Presley is the first being he hasn’t run from), orthe preview for next week (puppies!)? And whose side are you on in thecase of "Pawcasso": Laura’s or Beth Joy’s?

Comments (30 total) Add your comment
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  • Chris

    Having rescued an abused dog myself, I understand the issues they can have and helping them work through them. Not every dog has the good fortune to be treated well their whole lives. Laura took advantage of that to save herself. I was glad to see her go.

  • Chris

    And I preferred JD’s painting over Teresa’s. Was their critique of JDs a put-on or what?

  • majigail

    I could really do without Beth Joy, but Laura was a little sketchy. I was shocked to see Travis defend Beth Joy. I’m still willing to let him and Presley follow me home anyday though.

  • Kartent

    I’m personally looking forward to the smackdown between the two ladies judges next week! Travis is a knight in shining armour *sigh* How many men would go against a girl he has a budding ‘thing’ for to defend a hapless girl that he has no personal interest in? Honestly, that boy is a true gentleman.

  • Melanie

    I’m not a Beth Joy fan by any means, but let’s face it, Laura ran into trouble because she didn’t start the painting until 3 hours before they were to be complete (not the night before like everyone else). Throwing Beth Joy under the bus was really weak. And good for Travis for sticking up for her!
    As for JD, I still think the guy is a tool! I think Galaxy was kissing him because she thought she was in trouble (her attempt to appease the alpha male) and then he clearly acted irritated by it.

  • TsuKata

    I honestly think Laura would have done better if she would have explained to the judges that she had an elaborate plan with stencils that ended up failing because she didn’t anticipate how much the paint would spread on the canvas, so things that were supposed to be shapes turned out as blobs, and since they were only given one canvas (which I’m assuming was the case given that no one seemed to start over when they had an early mistake), she couldn’t go back and correct it, so she had to work with it as best as she could.
    I don’t know if taping sponges to a dog’s paws is “helping the dog work out” their abuse issues. It seems like its own kind of abuse to me, but this show has made very clear that it’s totally fine with making the dogs do really darn near abusive stuff so long as it’s part of a challenge…but heaven forbid an owner do something that was allowed in a challenge but isn’t specifically part of the new challenge.
    I love this show, but the judging is really suspect IMO.

  • tickles

    I don’t think laura went home because of the painting…she went home because of what she tried to do to Beth Joy. any idiot can see that beth Joy is besotted with Bella Starlet.
    I liked Laura’s little dog…he was adorable. I also really like Andrew. But I thought that Laurie’s picture looked too “perfect”…no mistakes? I thought that was a little sketchy.
    Travis is a gentleman…very impressed. But I still miss Tillman!

  • Kelly

    Is this show still on? It had so much potential when it started, and now has proven to be a flop. This show was over for me when they booted Tillman!

  • Jennifer

    I think she probably could have done a decent painting without forcing her dog to use her paws, but the show does seem to pressure the owners to do things that aren’t in the dogs’ best interest. Teresa should have been kicked off for her “snarl” band a couple of weeks back.
    I like Travis/Presley (more of them should have stood up for Beth Joy), and Bill/Star, but I think JD thinks pretty highly of himself – I hope he realizes what a great dog he has.
    These dogs are being forced to do some pretty stupid things – and it looks like they’ll be purposely stressed again next week. And all for the owners’ egos.

  • azjudyann

    Kelly, I totally agree with what you said. When Tillman left the show, I left the audience. I only keep up with it now by reading the recaps. I can’t stand half of the dog owners left on this show and think the judges need to be severely reminded that they aren’t judging the Westminster. This show isn’t that important.

  • danielle

    I think watching Laura backstage gave Travis the perfect excuse to run for the hills (next to Presley’s footprints under the beaming sun of course). Talk about cutthroat and totally unnecessary. The look on her face when Travis defended Beth Joy was priceless. Of course maybe Travis was just bothered by her wearing what looked like waders with a sundress.
    I’m glad to see Travis wasn’t fooled by her obvious fawning over Presley. Presley’s an adorable boxer, but you can’t convince me that a woman who paints a different colored mohawk on her dog every day would sincerely love a sloppy boxer mush.

  • Anonymous

    Whose idea was this show. I like dogs, but come on! And they actually dedicated a tv watch to it and I clicked on it!

  • Paw-lease!

    This show has so much potential, but CBS is totally wasting it on ridiculous tests. What does painting have to do with the intelligence of a dog? This was the stupidest contest yet, and they’ve had several bad ones. The dogs are so much fun to watch, and my 5-year-old loves this show, so I’ll keep watching. But paw-lease CBS… fix the show next year!!! How about judging them on something that actually has to do with the D-O-G and not the creativity of the owner.

  • Jason

    Travis defended BethJoy b/c Laura was getting to close and he doesnt want anyone to know he likes Larry’s, not Laura’s.

  • kristhediva

    I’ve met Beth Joy way before she was on this show and in her defense, she would never, EVER do anything to hurt Bella Starlet. True she can be a little nutty, but she is totally and completely in love with her dog. She very careful about what Bella is sensitive to and it was just crappy of Laura to call her out like that.

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