In the fur-ocious competition that was Us Weekly‘s first-ever #PetOlympics, we saw a slew of speedy runners, expert fetchers, and even professional cuddlers. All of the contestants were either athletic or adorable, showing off their unique skill set to try and take home the gold. But only three could medal and win cash prizes.
After a ruff deliberation, judges were able to narrow down the entries to just 10 top finalists. Then we left it up to our readers to vote for three winners, who will be crowned Pet Olympians for their strong personalities and hidden talents, including an atypical and agile Frenchie, an incredibly high jumper named Beasley, and a pug with snores that will rock your world. Let’s meet these medalists!
Bronze: Winston The Frenchie
Poised and focused on the prize, the bronze medalist is a 4-year-old French Bulldog who whizzes over high bars like a breeze. Winston, from Hoboken, New Jersey, is surprisingly athletic and driven. “He defies all stereotypes that Frenchies are couch potatoes,” owner Erin Manhan, 33, told Us. “And that photo was taken the first time he was ever on an agility course.”
Ironically, Winston will take off and give 150 percent for about an hour — to play fetch, chase his friends at the park, and show off to other humans — and then he’ll nap for five. “He definitely has FOMO,” Manhan said. “So he can’t help himself when he’s around other dogs or people.”
While he debuted with impressive raw talent on the obstacle run, Winston also stuns with an extensive wardrobe. Walking the streets of Hoboken, this pint-size pup is known as the most fashionable dog around town. “He has a full closet of t-shirts, jackets, booties — everything,” Manhan said. “It’s actually a little embarrassing, but he’s probably the best dressed bulldog in the Tri-State area.” And for that, we give him extra honors.
Silver: Beasley, The Pupmigos
Earning second place is Beasley, a 2-year-old Australian Kelpie mix who has some major ups. Able to leap more than five feet into the air from a standing position, this incredible canine is extremely agile. “He boings and jumps all the time and he loves to run because he’s a herder,” owner Ceci Coppola, 27, told Us. “We want to put him into an agility class because he’s incredibly smart.”
At home, Beasley practices his acrobatics with his four fellow rescues in Atlanta, Georgia. Known as the Pupmigos, Coppola’s pack of pups also includes a pair of 1-year-old Golden Retrievers, a 4-year-old Labrador-Boxer mix, and a 5-year-old Pitbull mix. Together, they’re a force to be reckoned with. But Beasley is the peppy instigator who taught golden Watson how to play fetch and hoards the crew’s Bark Box swag to “boop” each toy with his nose.
But he’s also next-level loyal. “He is a stage five clinger. He loves to be right beside whoever is home — if he’s not playing with one of the other dogs,” Coppola said. That loving demeanor must come from Coppola herself, who has worked in the animal care industry for five years and plans to open a farm and rescue center for at-risk dogs. “I just want to give them the best life possible,” she said.
Gold: King Tuck The Pug
Oddly enough, our first place medalist beat out the rest of the competition in his sleep — literally. The 1-year-old pug from Virginia is taking home gold for his video taken while snoozing.
But Tucker has mastered the sport of sleeping, nestling between his owners’ legs to sleep in the oddest positions (belly up, upside down, twisted into an S-shape) and stretch out like a yogi while he lets out some surprisingly heavy snores. “He has cute snores but sometimes they’re as loud as a human’s,” owner Camilla Caban, 31, told Us. “He’s like a little grandpa. It doesn’t bother me but my boyfriend, Ryan, has to fall asleep before Tucker or the snores keep him up all night.” This pug is so dedicated to his sport that he clocks in a whopping 12 to 14 hours of naps every single day. Now that’s dedication.
In addition to coyly stealing toys from his friends at the dog park, Tucker loves to dress up in various costumes — like sharks, lobsters, unicorns, and dinosaurs — and don the occasional bow tie. He’s definitely got pup-fluencer potential. Plus, he can purr like a cat. Yes, you read that right. “He will sit on your lap and if you’re rubbing his chest, he’ll be so happy that he purrs pretty loudly,” Caban said. Well Tuck, we’ve gotta paw it to ya. Congrats on your all-around victory!
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