Big ears: as Dumbo found, they could be both a curse and a blessing. Whilst oversized lug ‘oles are sometimes poked fun of in humans (I often point out to a bald friend of mine that he looks like a Volkswagon Beetle with its front doors open), they have been the ticket to a mention in the Guinness Book of Records for one pooch.
Black and tan coloured coonhound Harbor, of Boulder, Colorado, has just been named by Guinness officials as the dog with the longest ears in the world. The tale of the tape shows that his left ear measures 12 ¼” (31.1 cm) and his right one at 13 ½” (34.3 cm).
As celebrated as he is for his record shattering ears, they proved to be a liability when Harbor was a pup. They were so long, he would trip over them, and frequently fall down his owner’s stairs. However, coonhounds are purposely bred to have long ears, as it is thought that they help to waft scents towards their noses, and Harbor soon grew into his ears.
His owner, Jennifer Wert, said:
“Cars will literally stop in the street to take a closer look and get a picture.”
“Most days I forget how oddly long his ears are. He’s a phenomenon in the world and he creates smiles wherever we go.”
In fact, Harbor’s ears are so big, each one could comfortable house the world’s smallest dog, Brandy, who is barely taller than a Cola can. Amazingly, his ear span is longer than the height of the world’s smallest human, Junrey Balawing, who is a mere 23.5” (59.7 cm) tall. However, it remains to be seen if Harbor’s massive ears will allow him to take flight like Disney’s doe-eyed baby elephant.