The 2014 Drake Relays are underway at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and as is tradition with this annual track and field competition, the festivities began on Monday with the most important event of them all – the Beautiful Bulldog competition. For the last 35 years of the Drake Relays, the Beautiful Bulldog contest has helped the school pick a pooch to represent its chosen mascot, the English bulldog. The event has become so popular that in order to pick the 50 bulldogs that will compete for the top honor, Drake now has to use a lottery system to scale the entrants down from more than 100 each year.
This year’s big winner is an 18-month old bulldog named Lucey, whose human companion has been training to be a therapy dog. According to CBS News, Dr. Tiffany Torstenson has viewed Lucey’s docile nature as a benefit in taking her to work at the Mercy Katzmann Breast Center in Clive, IA, as patients who are recovering seem to enjoy being around that goofy, wrinkled face. Torstenson also says that Lucey loves cheese, and having owned an English bulldog before, the idea of one eating something as fart-inducing as cheese is terrifying. Seriously, bulldogs fart A LOT.
Looking at Lucey, you can see why she was a perfect choice, because who’s a widdle slobber monster? You are! Yes you are! But in a perfect world, all of the bulldogs in this competition would have won, because look at how freaking adorable they are.
(Many more images available at Drake University’s Flickr.)