Mud-Loving German Shepherd Wins EQUUS Magazine’s 2014 Dirty Dog Contest

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August 4, 2014--Staring into the camera with a dignified expression, Bruno looks regal---as is befitting his German Shepherd heritage---until you notice that those stockings on his legs aren’t his normal coat color.

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They’re mud.

Bruno’s love of water—and subsequently, mud—is what brought judges of EQUUS Magazine’s 2014 Dirty Dog Contest to choose the young dog as the winner, giving his owners a prize package worth more than $600 from contest sponsors Doc’s Products, HorseTech, Farnam, Merck Animal Health and Winnie’s Cookies.

In total, there were 254 unique entries, making it a tough decision.

"The dogs were all so cute it was hard to choose!” said EQUUS editor Laurie Prinz. “However, we decided we think "Bruno" deserves the top prize."

Entries had to include a photo and an essay, and Bruno’s owners wrote:

"When he came into our lives as a 6-week old pup, we had no idea the laughs our new German Shepherd would provide, since his job was supposed to be to protect our home.

But Bruno soon revealed he loved water, and could not get enough playtime in it, taking on the role we thought belonged to our Yellow Labrador Retriever. And although he travels to most all our out-of-town horse shows, once in a while, he can’t go. So when my grown daughter dog-sat for us right before his first birthday last year, we may have neglected to mention this favorite activity of his, and unfortunately, the rain came down in a torrent in our absence that weekend.

Imagine our surprise when we received this photo update on how things were at the house, via Facebook, while we were out of town! To us, it was a mess, but to Bruno, the water-loving German Shepherd (and apparently the mud-loving Shepherd as well), it was bliss. Thanks to his fun-loving spirit, we have a photo to smile about forever."

To view the winner and other entries, visit EQUUSmagazine.com/DirtyDogContest.