Category: Dog World


This particular piece relates to my other article ‘Levelling the playing field’ which was published in my Dog World column ‘Crossing the headlines’

A number of us have recently become increasingly worried about the number of private registries mushrooming up that claim to cater for both pedigree and crossbreed.

In America a number of these entities have had relationships with the ‘puppy mill’ industry and it seems a similar thing could be quietly happening here. Continue reading

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We’re on the move once more! Up to our necks in plastic packing boxes and bubblewrap and the inevitable cull of items begins yet again; ‘do we really need that slow cooker/Qualcast push along mower/Jane Fonda ‘Trim, Tone and Flex DVD!’

And in between runs to the dump and attending car boot sales (a particularly soul-destroying experience) we have been making regular trips to our intended new home in sunny South Devon and it was on one of those trips that something very strange happened…a bizarre coincidence that gave me a lot to mull over.

We’d parked up in the multi-storey in Torquay and as we emerged from the gloom of the carpark I spotted a dog being walked by a couple and I couldn’t quite believe my eyes. Continue reading

Well, my recent article about dangerous dogs has certainly got you talking and I received a number of emails concerning readers’ experiences when out walking their own dogs or when with their children/grandchildren. A number of the stories were quite disturbing and it is clearly evident that something urgently needs to happen to the cowardly thugs who abuse, brandish and goad these poor animals into action. Continue reading

Little Ella McKevitt was innocently playing in her aunt’s garden with her friends. One can easily imagine the scene; it’s one that plays out up and down the country, the two year old happily running around and the ensuing sounds of childish laughter and excited squeals of delight.

And then four dogs from a neighbouring property suddenly come crashing through a hole in the fence…

Little Ella was only saved from death by the heroic actions of her aunt but not before she was severely bitten on the face, neck and body. The terror and agonising pain that little girl must have felt simply doesn’t bear thinking about. Continue reading

THE RISE OF SLACTIVISM

Phew! Well, last month’s article (and Dog World Blog post) certainly provoked a reaction from both sides of the brachycephalic debate. Obviously a very vociferous element of the veterinary profession didn’t react too well to the criticism aimed at them which was understandable and expected however what wasn’t expected was the level to which some of that reaction (from such esteemed professionals) stooped.

One vet, Dr Judy Puddifoot (what a charming surname, almost Beatrix Potteresque) in reference to my article put this up on Facebook on 17th March.

We all took an oath to protect animal welfare. People yelled, ‘why aren’t vets speaking up for the brachycephalics?’ And yet when we do we get lambasted for it by unqualified lay people who think they know better! #DogWorldD*ckhead’ Continue reading

A CRITICAL FRIEND

What would we do without vets? I know, it’s something most of us prefer not to think about. Of course we all have the odd grumble about the profession (and as a bird keeper/breeder I’ve had more than my fair share of negative experiences with vets who clearly hadn’t got a clue in this admittedly specialist field of expertise) but on the whole, in our hour of need, it’s certainly reassuring to have a good vet nearby.

However, I am increasingly alarmed by the rise of a certain degree of militancy within the veterinarian field. For some reason this thinking is more prevalent among the younger vets in our towns and cities although I certainly haven’t encountered it in our excellent local rural practice, which, contradicting what I have just written, is solely staffed by young vets! Continue reading

THE KC GROWS SOME KAHUNES

Something that has got a lot of you talking (if my inbox is anything to go by) was Jemima Harrison’s recent threat to sabotage Crufts in all manner of inventive ways, from people dressed as French Bulldogs handing out leaflets, a projection of 40ft French Bulldog nostrils onto the NEC and even a plane flying over the building trailing her CRUFFA (Campaign for the Responsible Use of Flat Faced Animals) message.

Many were quite understandably worried about these shenanigans (especially the threat to disrupt the BIS with “an extra special surprise”) but worry not as Ms Harrison recently announced on her Facebook group that these announcements (in the manner of the infamous Bobby Ewin shower scene which was meant to delete a whole previous series from everyone’s mind) were…well, not quite a dream exactly…but simply all an elaborate “late night joke”. Continue reading

What did you think about the offerings on TV this Christmas? I think it was quite possibly one of the worst festive television I’ve ever seen. What would we have done without Morecambe and Wise, Only Fools and Horses and other seventies and eighties Christmas specials being broadcast? I suppose an added bonus of watching these re-runs from Christmases past was not having to endure seeing or hearing David Walliams, Miranda Hart or James ‘on everything’ Corden – a silver lining to every cloud. Continue reading

CANINE DOUBLE STANDARDS

It was fantastic to recently read about the removal of the Basset Hound from the category three ‘high-profile’ list. This breed is (for obvious reasons, given my passion for Dachshunds) yet another of my ‘favourites’ and one I find myself instantly drawn to at shows and I have over the past few years noticed that a number of the winning dogs (like the Bulldog) have been more athletically built, have ‘more light underneath them’ and have good clean, tight eyes – in other words they have all the requirements of a working hound. For once, it’s good to see justice done and the sterling work of breed clubs, breeders and a dedicated health co-ordinator being fully recognised. Continue reading

From my Dog World column ‘Crossing the headlines’ on 16th November 2016, I follow up on my previous article on the subject of how to tackle exhibitor dissatisfaction.

My last article, ‘The real reason people are quitting’ certainly stirred the hornet’s nest and provoked a deluge of very interesting reaction from show-going dog folk. Unusually for the dog world there was a general feeling of agreement for what I had written and a consensus that if we are to survive and thrive as a hobby, some very important and urgent changes definitely need to take place. Continue reading