Last night's Dancing with the Paws had it all, passion, fire, controversy, and some of the best dog and professional dancing we have seen in years.
The night began with Mollie dancing an elegant waltz with her partner Derek Hough. Mollie's paw work was divine, and her posture perfect. Carrie Ann said she had rarely seen two partners so in tune with one another and Bruno said he could feel the fire of Mollie's sexuality reflected in her eyes. Len was upset with Derek's use of a tennis ball as a prop, and accused him of trying to pull his mickie. Still, Mollie got two nines and an eight from Len.
Next up was Nigel paired with Cheryl Burke for a tango. On the advice of fashion director Hattie Mae Nigel wore his bowler and was chewing on his cigar. Again, Len criticized the use of props, while Bruno was not favorable to the considerable amount of drool that Nigel left on the floor. Carrie Ann thought the drooling was kind of a turn on, and she praised Cheryl's choreography to be able to pull of a believable tango with a partner who did little more than bury his head in her crotch and spin around on his little pads. The pair got three sixes but that did not bother Nigel, who, by the time the scores were read, was curled up on the floor in a ball snoring.
Dancing the first Latin number of the night was Smoochy with his partner Anna Treybunaskashakabynashkaba. Bruno was very excited about Smoochy's performance calling him a four legged beast of love and making the poor pooch hide quivering under his Mama's chair. Len did not like the dance but Tom, who with Brooke coaxed poor Smoochy from under the chair, told him he thought it was because Smoochy shed all over him. Carrie Ann took a point off their score because they broke hold when Smoochy took off to chase a squirrel.
What many felt was less successful was the Quick Step with Matilda and Louis Van Amstel. They started well, despite Matilda having, what she termed, four left feet, but the elegant Newfie ran into trouble when she lost her footing and fell on Van Amstel leaving nothing but a little European smush on the floor. Len and Carrie Ann both gave her low marks for the slip up, and the killing of the popular choreographer, but an obviously intimidated Bruno gave her a nine, which he immediately regretted as the big dog spent over a minute thanking him with big licks.
Copernicus drew the most difficult assignment, dancing the Viennese Waltz with new comer Ashley DeGrosso. But our thoughtful little friend proved himself to be quite a dancer. He told Brooke Burke he learned fast foot work by avoiding Portuguese Man of Wars on the beach. He got two nines from Carrie Ann and Len and the Bruno yelled out ten and the little man scared Copernicus so much he ran into the audience and on to his Mom's lap.
Edyta Sliwinska had a much more difficult time doing her tango with the youngest contestant, little Rugie Ruger. Despite long hours of practice Ruger was much more interested in trying to dig holes in the dance floor and pulling at the strands of Edyta's skimpy dress. During their dance Edyta stubbornly stuck to their choreography but little Ruger got obsessed with chasing the swirling parts of her dress and finally gave it one large rip which left the scantily clad Edyta completely naked and caused Bruno to say "so that's what one looks like." Ruger, a fan of sweaty European skin, took off after Edyta to enjoy some licks and their scores were never calculated.
Another highlight of the evening was Baron (AKA Bear) doing an elegant waltz with Chelsea Hightower. Carrie Ann said he had wonderful posture and his footwork was spectacular. Len said that he had class and pizazz but had a problem with his shedding. Bruno told him that he was the dog who put the great in the German Shepard dog. Bear thanked them with a regal woof of joy as he grabbed a ten from Carrie Ann and tied Copernicus for the lead.
Saffron and Damian Whitehead both thrilled the crowd with an elegant Viennese Waltz. Saffron also wowed them with her beautiful outfit created by Hattie Mae. Saffron held her posture, had spectacular paw work, and no one in the audience could take their eyes off of her. Bruno said Saffron reminded him of a beautiful swan gracefully going across the water as the male swans looked on with lust in their heart. Saffron bit him. This cost her, because, as she got tens from Carrie Ann and Len, Bruno and his bloody ankle only gave her a six. In the Dogatorium afterwards Saffron dedicated the dance to her brave brother Sage.
Savannah was lucky enough to draw Maksim Chmerkovskiy as her partner and he tried to keep her concentrated on the steps but Savannah was way too interested in what was going on around her. Half way though their tango Savannah saw that someone had left a gate open and she ran out the gate, through the door, and it took her mother and Rolland a half hour to find her dancing for spare change at the subway station.
The final couple of the evening was Roxy and Mark Ballas doing the quickstep. Roxy did everything she could to keep up but her little paws were not made for the quick steping. When they were done she tried to keep her growls to herself as she got her score, but could not contain herself when she learned that Carrie Anne was deducting a point because of lift. "Look how small I am!" she growled. "How am I not supposed to be lifted?" The all dog audience rose and cheered for her.
No dogs cheered louder than Foley and Pocket who sat eating popcorn watching the show, knowing that sometimes it's better to put the spotlight on your friends then yourselves. And their friends were certainly very entertaining.