Dog lovers were outraged to see a Facebook post by Alan Tobin, an Irish politician, about his delight that breed specific legislation had been brought in, affecting owners in his constituency. This was in Dog World on 25 May 2016.
As many of you who read this column regularly know, I’m not the biggest fan of the internet age and social media. Obviously it has brought us huge benefits, not least being able to track down the girl that played Nancy in your junior school production of Oliver.
But along with these dubious benefits of ‘connectivity’ comes some serious negatives. There’s the time many of us waste maintaining the numerous casual relationships fostered on social media sometimes at the neglect of our most important and meaningful relationships here in the ‘real’ world. And, of course, we have the growing incidences of cyberbullying, witch-hunts and the wildfire-like spread of malicious gossip that we all too commonly see in various forums. All very nasty and something I’ve actively tried to avoid. Continue reading
From my ‘Crossing the headlines’ column in Dog World (9th April 2014) where I review the documentary, ‘Dangerous Dogs’.
MY FIRST experience of a ‘dangerous dog’ was back in the spring of 1992. I’d accompanied my mum to Tottenham Cemetery to tidy up my grandmother’s grave after the winter. Her grave lay in front of a low retaining wall and, while we knelt down, clearing away the dead flowers from our previous visit, there came a low, rumbling sound from above. We looked up and, standing on a wall, fixing us with its yellow eyes, was a mustard-coloured dog with a head the size and shape of a breezeblock – a pitbull.
Images of dogs exactly fitting the one that now snarled above us had been splashed across the papers and TV for months.
Mum wanted to run but I whispered for her to ‘stay put and don’t look at it’. So, we crouched there, hearts hammering, frozen like statues, but still its threatening growls grew louder. Slowly I glanced up and noticed that we weren’t the focus of its attention after all; I followed its steely gaze to the flapping cellophane that wrapped our fresh flowers. Tentatively I moved my hand bringing it down firmly upon the noisy wrapping. Suddenly the dog’s owner appeared, yelled some expletives at it and followed these with some kicks and punches before slipping an old piece of rope around the unfortunate creature’s neck and dragging him away. Continue reading