Published in my Dog World column ‘Crossing the headlines’ (19th October 2016), my article sparked a large debate – with hundreds of share and online comments – among exhibitors in response to my observations and suggestions regarding dog shows, breed standards, judging and exhibitor dissatisfaction.
One subject that has certainly got a lot of you talking on social media is the announcement of an idea that a reduction in the number of breed clubs through amalgamation could lead to higher show entries. I can see where those who support such a move are coming from but, like a lot of you, I think they are missing the point.
Show entries are falling for a whole host of complex reasons, reasons that have been fully discussed in this paper by various commentators for many, many years and frustratingly so many of the useful ideas put forward by people who really know what they are talking about have been dismissed or completely ignored. Continue reading
From my Dog World blog on 11 August 2016.
In my monthly column Crossing the Headlines (17 August 2016) I wrote about Gavin Robertson’s marathon charity fundraiser, Pedigree Paws United – a series of sponsored walks totalling 160 miles and featuring every recognised breed of dog in the UK.
Each dog will be walking a minimum of five miles.
‘King Orry, owned by Mr G R Murrell. Born January 25, 1889, by Pagan ex Koorie. Breeder J Tasker.’
The announcement put me in mind of another famous walking match, which took place in London, featuring the Bulldog. The full story is recounted in the marvellous The Bulldog – A Monograph by Edgar Farman. Continue reading
From my Crossing the headlines column in Dog World (13 April 2016) I reflect on the case of Baby the Bulldog whose abusive owners were let off lightly.
Reading through the newspapers there are many, many times that you literally despair at the depths of depravity mankind can sink to and one story I read last week really made me wonder what on earth has gone wrong with some of our young people today and it seriously makes me fear for the future.
Andrew and Daniel Frankish’s hideous crime only came to light, two years after the offences had been committed, all because of a sim card being discovered on the floor of a supermarket. When the footage contained on the card was played it revealed truly harrowing footage of two brothers systematically torturing their pet Bulldog. Continue reading
From my Dog World column ‘Crossing the headlines’ (2nd September 2015).
HAVE YOU ever noticed how sections of the media seem to become obsessed and fixate on certain subjects? We have the Daily Mail’s current obsession with migrants, the Daily Express’ bizarre obsession with Britain’s erratic weather and Channel Four and Five’s obsession with benefits.
They first gave us Benefit Busters, Benefits Britain and Benefit Street and these were quickly followed by a whole raft of similarly themed shows like Britain’s Benefit Tenants, Gypsies on Benefits and Proud, Too Fat to Work, Me and My 14 kids and now – and of course it was only a matter of time – Dogs on the Dole. Continue reading
From my ‘Crossing the headlines’ column in Dog World (9th October 2013) where I review recent TV documentaries on dogs.
Having seen the success ITV has enjoyed with its plethora of dog related shows it seems the BBC has decided that it too wants a piece of the action and so it brought us ‘The Wonder of Dogs’. The programme promised to investigate why this “single species comes in such an array of shapes and sizes” and the team also aimed to find out “how the extraordinary genetics of modern dogs underlies the extreme differences we see between the breeds”.
Hearing that promise and those lofty aims combined with the fact the show was being produced by the BBC immediately set alarm bells ringing and it was a feeling obviously shared by many others as one wag posted on Facebook, “has everyone got Ofcom’s address to hand!” Continue reading