Pharoah Hound Competes at Westminister Thanks to GVS’ Vets

Pharoah Hound Beats the Odds to Compete in Westminster Dog Show
An award-winning show dog escapes death and inspires owner.
By Suzanna Logan

They say that a cat has nine lives, and if that’s true, then Bekki Pina’s Pharoah hound, Uber, may be part feline.

Last summer, the award-winning show dog was wandering around his backyard when he was struck three times by a copperhead snake. Within minutes, he began to swell and could barely lift his head.

Pina quickly shuttled him to an emergency care facility. He spent the night at the Georgia Veterinary Specialists, in Sandy Springs, where doctors and staff successfully treated him.

Uber returned to competition last September. In October, he placed first in his category with the United Kennel Club.

Next month, he competes in the king of all canine shows—the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, in New York.

During Uber’s crisis, Pina created a Facebook page.  Within hours, the page was filled with comments of concern and support.

“He will be OK, sure he will,” wrote Elena Popova in a July post. “He just needs some time to recover…I [believe] it, you must [believe] it, everyone does, so it has to be this way. Curing kisses to Uber. “

Contributions poured in, too. Uber’s time in the intensive care unit was fully paid for by donations.

Pina didn’t want to get her hopes up, however. She hardly dared to believe Uber would come home alive.

“Every day I visited him I thought it was the last time I was going to see him,” she says.

She certainly never expected he would be able to show in the agility courses or races, as before.

But, Uber, which means “above” in German, lived up to his name and went above and beyond those expectations to the surprise of everyone.

“He is my walking miracle,” said Pina. “He has reminded me not to take things for granted and to never give up.”

Uber’s Facebook family has stayed connected to him.

“Brings tears to my eyes,” wrote Lisa Stegg Fontanarosa in a September Facebook post. “So happy he is doing fantastic.”

No matter what happens at Westminster, Uber’s 260 Facebook fans, and anyone who hears his incredible story knows that he is already a winner—and one lucky dog.

This story was originally posted in on January 16, 2011
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