Ghost Head (Blowin’ in the Wind)

The conversation in the days following a Super Bowl are usually about the game, but also about the commercials. Anheuser-Busch typically gets kudos for sentimental or funny ads involving their famous Budweiser Clydesale horses and/or a Dalmatian, but this year, they did something a little different. They combined the majesty of those horses with the humor of a Dalmatian’s face literally “flapping in the wind,” and bonded them with an environmental message set to the track of Bob Dylan’s Blowin’ in the Wind* written nearly sixty years ago.  That’s a lot to put into forty-five seconds, but they did it:

Seen in the commercial is eight year old “Phoebe” (aka CH Fyrehouse N Xanadu’s Phoebe) from Goleta, California, picked because of her ears and jowls, said her breeder and owner, Eleanor Winters. How anyone from Budweiser even knew about her dogs was from a photo shoot Winters did with three Dalmatian puppies at the Doheny Mansion several years ago for the clothing company H&M. Over the years,  Winters would be contacted now and then about more work, but the dogs that were needed were never the ages that Winters had. The day came, however, when she was got a “casting call” for an adult Dalmatian, and of the pictures that Winters sent of her dogs, Phoebe was chosen for a “go see,” and fit the bill. Winters knew Phoebe’s appearance was for a Budweiser commercial, but it was all somewhat secretive, and she didn’t find out until much later that it was for the Super Bowl.

Getting back to those jowls and ears, a wind machine was used to get a predictable affect, and directors liked the way Phoebe’s ears blew in the wind. Winters said, “It fit into whatever idea they had about showing off that they are now using wind power to make Budweiser.”

We, however, want to talk about one more thing. In Dalmatians, spots are usually smaller on the head, legs and tail than they are on the body, and Phoebe is recognizable by a small black dot on her forehead. The term used to call her nearly all-white noggen is “ghost head.” Open marked faces (a face with very little or no spotting) are referred to as “Ghost Faces.” Both are perfectly acceptable in a show ring, and what follows are a few examples of both:

Dalmatian, Super Bowl, commercial, Budweister, Ad, TV, Super Bowl

 

Dalmatian, Super Bowl, commercial, Budweister, Ad, TV, Super Bowl

 

Dalmatian, Super Bowl, commercial, Budweister, Ad, TV, Super Bowl

Our thanks to Heather Whitehead for allowing us to share pictures of her “Tanner” (aka CH Diamonds & Leather of Pal) and “Irish” (Bay Colony Royalty’s All Fired Up) for our educational “show and tell. ”

*As an aside, Dylan’s “Blown’ in the Wind was ranked by Rolling Stone at #14 in its list of the 500 Greatest Songs of all time. The Number One song on that list? Bob Dylan’s Like a Rolling Stone.

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