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Living the life of Riley in fast lane – Wiener Nationals

Article Tab : Olympic medalist Brittany Hayes and her wiener dog, Riley, will be vying for another title Saturday at Los Alamitos Race Course.HUNTINGTON BEACH The last time I talked to Brittany Hayes we were in China, at the world’s grandest sporting event, discussing the possibility of being a champion, an Olympic champion.

Now, I’m talking to Hayes here, at a nearly empty park, but still discussing the possibility of a champion, one who stands 10 inches high and weighs 12 pounds.

And, in mid-question, someone’s dog jumps on my lap.

This rarely happens at Lakers practice, although no one is ever sure what’s coming next from Ron Artest.

“I’m an Olympian,” Hayes says, “and my dog is more famous than me.”

In recent days, I’ve written about Phil Jackson, Mike Scioscia and Vladimir Guerrero. Generally, whomever I write about is a big dog.

Today, I’m writing about a wiener dog.

But, no, not just any wiener dog. This wiener dog is one of the fastest wiener dogs around.

Hey, I do have standards and Riley does measure up, even if he’s so short he could limbo under a bathroom rug.

He already has won the Octoberfest event at Old World Village in Huntington Beach and the wiener dog races that are part of Long Beach State’s homecoming. When your school doesn’t have a football team, apparently you improvise.

Riley next will be going after the Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals on Saturday at Los Alamitos Race Course. The event mostly is for charity — benefitting the Seal Beach Animal Care Center — and for laughs.

But something quite significant also waits at the finish line — $1,000. That goes to the dog’s owner.

And the dog house in the shape of a Wienerschnitzel restaurant? That goes to the winning wiener.

What sets Riley apart — besides being Usain Bolt in a teeny chocolate-and-tan fur coat — is that his owner possesses an Olympic medal. Hayes, who played at Foothill High and USC, won silver with the U.S. women’s water polo team in 2008 in Beijing.

Now, she’s on dry land chasing another valued piece of sports hardware: a trophy inscribed with the words “Fastest Wiener in the West.”

So it’s not exactly “Faster, Higher, Stronger,” but let’s see Michael Phelps race on all fours against opponents with names like Killer, Dude and Snuggles.

“I am competitive, of course,” Hayes says. “But Riley just loves to race. He’s a natural. People might think I’m a crazy dog lady. Well, I am a crazy dog lady but not one who goes crazy if my dog doesn’t win.”

When USA Water Polo wanted to do a story — complete with video — on Riley, Hayes was worried about what other people might think.

No one wants to be viewed as having the stability and perspective of a person who potentially one day could live alone with, say, 27 cats.

Well, Hayes isn’t that person. She has a boyfriend, Stefan Luedecke, and lives in a condo. The only hint of insanity is her desire to be an attorney; she just finished her first year at Loyola Law School.

But, be very certain, she does love her wiener dog.

“He’s our child,” Hayes says. “Everything revolves around him. He goes everywhere with us.”

Riley has been inside restaurants, hidden in a beach bag. He has gone grocery shopping. When she coaches, Hayes sometimes takes Riley to the pool, where he’ll sit in a bag with his head popping out.

He has a nice life, in part because he almost died before any of this racing business even began. Riley, who turns 2 in a couple weeks, was sick with bad allergies for five months.

There were times when Hayes had to hand-feed him baby food and carry him out to go to the bathroom, holding him up so he could do his business.

On this day, Riley appears completely healthy, and he sounds that way, too. The little guy enjoys a good bark.

“We say he has a split personality,” Hayes says. “He’s half Riley and half Chucky. He’ll yell at you for five minutes, and then he’ll be kissing you.”

Funny, Scioscia’s the same way.

But Riley is cuter. Scioscia wasn’t the one who dressed up like a fireman for Halloween and received 20,000 votes in an online costume contest.

“It’s really like he’s a human being sometimes,” Hayes says of Riley, not Scioscia. “It kind of scares us.”

On Saturday, Riley will attempt to let his legs do the barking. He will be trying to become a champion, trying to rise above the designation of mere wiener.

This isn’t the Olympics. This is bigger.

At the Games, first place means you get a spot on the top step. At the Wiener Nationals, first place means you get the whole house.

Source:  OC Register

O.C. Olympian Now Eyeing Wiener’s Circle

Nathan’s Annual Independence Day Hot Dog Eating Contest

Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest 2010

New York, Boston and Washington are cities warming up crowds with entertainment events during the day, putting up traditional fireworks displays. And what Big Apple Fourth of July would be complete without Coney Island’s embrace of two of America’s biggest loves: hot dogs and competition or Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest (2010).

Nathan’s International Hot Dog Eating Contest July Fourth is an annual competitive eating competition held at Nathan’s Famous Corporation’s original and best-known restaurant at the corner of Surf and Stillwell Avenues in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York.

The event is held on July 4 and is regarded as the world’s most famous hot dog eating contest and a colorful tradition of Independence Day in the United States. In 2006, over 30,000 spectators attended the event, and an additional 1.5 million households watched it live on ESPN.

Three time defending champion Joey Chestnut faced off with his competition, and when all was said and done, Chestnut emerged victorious again capturing the title for 2010. The contest festivities started on Sunday, July 4 at noon. The contest has become a 4th of July tradition.

Kobayashigettyimages_crop_310x205

2010 winner ate 54 wieners and buns

Other cities around the country hold local versions of the contest.

Here are a few local audience photos of attendees ;-)

weiner-dog-pup-sand

Small Bite

Too Much Fun

No Wiener Dogs Were Harmed…

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July 5, 2010 - Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Just One More Pet, pet fun, Pets, Unusual Stories | , , , , , , , , , , ,

4 Comments »

  1. I love your blog, but I can’t figure out how to subscribe to it. :( Is there a button I’m just not seeing?

    Comment by petpost | July 11, 2010 | Reply

  2. [...] Living the Life of Riley – Wiener Nationals [...]

    Pingback by Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals « JustOneMorePet | July 17, 2010 | Reply

  3. [...] Living the Life of Riley – Wiener Nationals [...]

    Pingback by 10 Great American Animal Races « JustOneMorePet | July 17, 2010 | Reply

  4. […] Weiner (Hot Dog) Day… a day for free or discounted hot dogs (weiners) at many restaurants, weiner (hot dog and sausage) eating contests and weiner dog races.  For those that didn’t realize there was a national weiner or hot dog day… there is […]

    Pingback by As Andrew Breitbart Laughs From Heaven, The Weiners Apologize for Another Appearance of Anthony’s Weiner on National Weiner Day | askmarion | July 24, 2013 | Reply


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