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Dogs as décor

Why bother buying the dogs when Benjamin Moore lets you paint your digs Golden Retriever, Weimaraner, and Golden Lab?

After lemon and orange, “apricot” is another favorite flavor of dog, as in the “apricot poodle.” Ladies of leisure used to having high tea might prefer their poodles in “teacup” size. Chow chows come in “cream” and “cinnamon.” Many breeds are “dish-faced,” the Old English sheepdog was once said to have a “china eye,” and some breeds have “tea-pot” tails. “Blue” is a Wedgwood favorite but utterly foreign to mammals. Nonetheless, stare long enough and you can almost see it in the coats of chows, Australian cattle dogs, Kerry Blues, and aristocratic Great Danes that come in “pure steel blue.” The color possibilities are endless. The Encyclopedia of the Dog, an important etiquette manual for the upwardly mobile, displays the coats allowed for each breed in small rectangles like fabric swatches from a J. Crew catalog.

Golden Labrador Retriever by Benjamin Moore uses a new affectation to make yellow Labs sound fancier.

Dog's Ear by Benjamin Moore.

The House of Weimaraner, “a snob sporting dog,” Roger Caras recalled, “developed and jealously guarded by the one of the biggest collection of snobs the dog world has ever seen.” Then there are the vizslas, Weimaraners of a different color, described by a dog trainer friend of mine as “dumb as they are red.”

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