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Way Downstream …

High marks and praise for Chessies

      Watching football while digesting Thanksgiving Day feasts is one ritual. Another is tuning in to the National Dog Show. Many who prefer terriers and hounds to fellows in helmets and pads cheered when Ducky, a Chesapeake Bay retriever, captured the crown in the Sporting Dog Group — even though he was nosed out for Best in Show by a sleek Italian greyhound named Whiskey.

     The muscled Ducky, of Mattapoisett, Mass., offered quite a contrast to some of the beribboned little foo-foo dogs. He didn’t seem to like having a judge examine his teeth. As he trotted around the ring in Philadelphia, the announcer offered a warning to people who might want to acquire a Chessie but view dogs as private property under their strict control: “They possess a streak of independence and view the relationship with humans as an equal partnership.”