Brewster’s Top Dog: Chinese Crested Hairy Hairless Louie

by Rich Eldred
Being hairless, a coat is important for Louie during the winter.
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BREWSTER – Turn off Fox, MSNBC and CNN; the voters have spoken. Never mind the primaries; the election is over, and the winner is Louie, or King Louie as he is sometimes known.

Louie was chosen as Brewster’s Top Dog of 2024 and will reign until next winter when a successor is chosen.

Louie is a washashore from Baltimore, a 12-year-old Chinese crested hairy hairless, who says, “I generally believe the shortest distance between two points is a circle” according to his mom, Pamlyn Atkins.

Atkins attributed Louie’s selection to strong voting support from his neighbors in Brewster’s Robinwood neighborhood who see him on his daily walks.

“I was named King Louie by my foster mother with (the) Maryland Animal Sanctuary,” Louie was quoted by Atkins. “I think she knew I’d be Top Dog someday.”

The honor is accompanied by a gift basket of treats and other merchandise from Agway in Orleans as well as a free dog license for 2024 bearing the number one.

“He’s a rescue dog that was found in West Virginia by a rescue organization in Baltimore,” Atkins said. “We found him on Pet Finder and got all our stuff together to go get him and drove to Baltimore (from Kingston, N.Y.).”

Atkins and her husband Russell Karasak knew they wanted a Chinese crested.

“In the ‘80s I became allergic to animals, all animals. I had horses then. We found a breeder in New York. We’d seen these hairless dogs on TV and they said it was a non-allergenic dog but I was still apprehensive. But she let us have a Chinese crested for six weeks and I got very attached and I had no allergic reaction.”

They got their first Chinese crested dog, a pure hairless breed except for the head and tail.

“Whoopee lived on the Cape until 2011,” Atkins said, until the dog died at age 14. “It took us a while before we could rescue another dog,” she added, and that dog was Louie. Atkins estimates he was about nine months old. At 12 he retains his vigor and puppy-like enthusiasm.

“He’s very affectionate. If you don’t want a dog to be velcroed to you don’t get a Chinese crested dog. He follows you all around. If I go upstairs he’s right there with me. He’s very protective. He guards the neighborhood,” Atkins said. “And he is not keen about strange dogs but he has a lot of dog friends. He’s best friends with Pedro Martinez who won the top dog two years ago. Pedro was here today.”

And we thought he was just a Hall of Fame pitcher.

Louie weighs 15 pounds but is feisty if he thinks his human friends are in peril. Atkins said he’ll alert them if a leaf flutters outside the door.

“He loves taking walks. Every day we take him through the neighborhood and through Nickerson (State Park) and to Owl Pond in Robinwood. He can walk five miles and is never tired,” Atkins said. He also enjoys hopping into the warm clothes when the dryer stops spinning and the door opens.

For a dog with such political success, he is no glad-hander of fellow canines and doesn’t frequent the Brewster Dog Park.

“He’s not good with stranger dogs but once he’s through that he is best friends forever. He remembers every dog he meets,” Atkins said. “In the Orleans vet’s office [they have dog videos] and he thinks every dog is real. He barks at every dog on TV.”

Fittingly for a dog nicknamed King and Prince, his favorite food is Royal Canine Hydrolyzed Protein. But when Louie received his gifts from Agway and Brewster he dove into the bag for Saint Rocco’s Meat Lovers Dog Treats. He also wears a windbreaker and raincoat from Agway, since as a hairless dog he is susceptible to the cold. However, he doesn’t do product endorsements. We report this just to be thorough.

Atkins noted that he is well traveled for a canine, having been to Montana, North Carolina, Illinois and Jamaica Plain, in addition to his youth in Maryland and West Virginia.

“He’s driven cross country four or five times and is a great traveler,” she said. “He enjoys the backseat in a seat belt.”

We’re glad he is a safe traveler and sets an example for humans in Brewster and elsewhere.