Lucey is tops in Iowa's `Beautiful Bulldog' event

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...

25 PHOTOS
Beautiful Bulldog Competition
See Gallery
Lucey is tops in Iowa's `Beautiful Bulldog' event
Lucey sits on the throne after being crowned the winner of the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Lucey is owned by Tiffany Torstenson of Waukee, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Lucey sits on the throne after being crowned the winner of the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Lucey is owned by Tiffany Torstenson of Waukee, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Lucey sits on the throne after being crowned the winner of the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Lucey is owned by Tiffany Torstenson of Waukee, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Lucey sits on the throne after being crowned the winner of the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Lucey is owned by Tiffany Torstenson of Waukee, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Stella lies during judging at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Stella is owned by Melody Reels, of Winterset, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
John Jacobson, of Pleasant Hill, Iowa, carries his dog Baby to the stage after it was named the miss congeniality winner at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Tiffany Torstenson, of Waukee, Iowa, kisses her dog Lucey after it was crowned the winner of the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Jasmine Josephine loses her wig as she walks across stage during judging at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. The dog is owned by Valerie Lillibridge, of Rockwell, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Addie walks across the stage during judging at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. The dog is owned by Lisa Schnathorst, of Olathe, Kansas. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Colleen Kelley, of Iowa City, Iowa, fixes the hat on her dog Bruce during judging at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Gracie walks across the stage during judging at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Gracie is owned by Carolyn Hofer, of Guttenberg, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Deliylah stands after winning the best dressed dog award at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Deliylah is owned by Tressa Yeggy, of Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Linus the Love Bug walks across the stage during judging at the 35th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. Linus is owned by Rebecca Richardson, of Washington, Ill. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Harley, owned by Jon Clark, of Boone, Iowa, walks across stage during the 34th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 22, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Diva, owned by Danielle Holmes of Ames, Iowa, looks on during the 34th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 22, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Huckleberry walks on stage before being crowned the winner of the 34th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 22, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. The bulldog is owned by Steven and Stephanie Hein of Norwalk, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Laura Kares, of Omaha, Neb., puts a hat on her bulldog Molly during the 34th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 22, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Dave Larson, of Des Moines, Iowa, sits with his bulldog Ramone during the 34th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 22, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Zena the Warrior Princess, owned by Cindy Driscoll, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, walks across the stage during the 33rd annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest Monday, April 23, 2012, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Ginger, left, owned by Chad Langworthy, of Clive, Iowa, walks past Addie, owned by Lisa Schnathorst, of Overland Park, Kan., during judging at the 32nd annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest Monday, April 25, 2011, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Lisa Schnathorst, of Overland Park, Kan., rubs the belly of her bulldog Addie during the 32nd annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest Monday, April 25, 2011, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Porterhouse, left, looks at Maxxis, right, during the 30th Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 20, 2009, in Des Moines, Iowa. Porterhouse, owned by Kevin and Erin Bell, of Des Moines, won the contest and Maxxis, ownded by Robert Apt, of Des Moines, was runner-up. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Jody Buss, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, holds her dog Dozer during the 30th Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 20, 2009, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Jezebel, owned by Linda Shelburg, of West Des Moines, Iowa, stands on stage during the 30th Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 20, 2009, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Dressed as a state trooper, Vinnie walks across the stage during the 27th annual Drake Most Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Monday, April 24, 2006, in Des Moines, Iowa. The dog is owned Kevin and Jamie Johnson, of Logan, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION


By LUKE MEREDITH
AP Sports Writer

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) -- Lucey is a slobbering 18-month-old pooch whose human family dreams of making her a therapy dog.

Winning a pageant before her second birthday should boost the Iowa bulldog's hopes of joining owner Dr. Tiffany Torstenson in the health care industry.

Lucey beat out 49 drooling competitors Monday to take this year's "Beautiful Bulldog" pageant, a tongue-in-cheek event designed to kick off the weeklong Drake Relays, an internationally renowned track and field meet in Des Moines.

"She's just very calm and she loves people," Torstenson, of Waukee, Iowa, said. "She loves the attention."

Torstenson, a breast surgeon at the Mercy Katzmann Breast Center, she said she often takes Lucey to work. Lucey's demeanor around doctors and patients helped convince her human family that she'd make a perfect therapy dog, and she will soon start training to become one.

Lucey was certainly a hit with the crowd at Drake's Knapp Center, besting a pair of boys named Lord Nelson and Zuul, to capture top honors.

"She's is very docile and she doesn't get really excited," Torstenson said. "Every room we go into, she's in that room. She likes to sleep in the bed, and hog the bed. And she loves cheese."

Monday marked the 35th anniversary of the Beautiful Bulldog event, which was started in 1979 in an effort to find a real dog to represent the school's mascot, the Bulldogs.

The pageant is meant to honor English Bulldogs and all the slovenly traits that have endeared the breed to so many. The event has become so popular in recent years that a lottery was needed to winnow the field from over 100 bulldogs down to 50.

Competitors from as far away as South Dakota and Kansas made the trip to Des Moines to find out which pup would be voted the prettiest.

Costumes and props are strongly encouraged, and a dog named Capone from Center Point, Iowa, got the crowd going by taking part of his turn on the catwalk on a skateboard. The runner-up, Zuul, was named after a character in the iconic `80s film "Ghostbusters," and he and his dad, Dan Phelps of Marengo, Iowa, wore costumes inspired by the movie.

But no one could touch the simple pink tutu and award-winning smile of Lucey, whose reign will last until next year's pageant.

Lucey received a crown, a cape and a cake for winning the event, and she'll be feted at Drake Stadium later this week.

"She's good with kids. She's good with adults. She's just been a great dog," said Lucey's owner, Toby Torstenson.

Read Full Story

People are Reading