From my ‘Crossing the headlines’ column in Dog World (12th February 2014) where I discuss potential pitfalls of designer crossbreeds.
While the dog world has been embroiled in arguments concerning the Assured Breeder Scheme, the media continues to focus on the growing numbers of ‘designer dogs’.
Jody Thompson writing for the Huffington Post (Jan 8) asked a question, “Why are people paying for designer dogs?”
It’s a fair question and one that many of us have puzzled over. Just why do people pay £800-£1,500 for a mongrel? Of course, it’s a free country and, as the old adage goes, a ‘fool and his money are easily parted’ but, why do a growing number of people pay out such a vast sum for their pet when a trip to the local animal shelter could fulfil all their needs for a fraction of the cost? If a long pedigree or owning a mongrel doesn’t bother you then why not simply adopt? This was the point Ms Thompson succinctly made in her well-written article. Continue reading
From my new Dog World opinion column ‘Crossing the headlines’ (19th April 2013)
Christmas isn’t my most-favourite time of the year but one thing I do really look forward to over the festive break is the arrival and reading of my Dog World annual. I love seeing the beautifully photographed dogs and reading about the great kennels past and present.
This year, I particularly enjoyed the in-depth review of what was going on in the various dog scenes around the world and was particularly struck by the similar problems and challenges facing us all. The one thing that really seems to unite all dog breeders and kennel clubs, whether you live in Croatia, Finland, South Africa or Australia is the focus (as it should be) on health. The general feeling from all the views was one of positivity for the future; some were really quite upbeat. Progress was being made and the pedigree world was ready to accept and learn from its past mistakes and move on into the future.
From the letters page of Dog World (8th March 2013)
A few nights ago I was flicking through the TV channels at home and, despite the vast array of channels, as usual, there was precious little worth watching. However, I did have the misfortune of stumbling across a documentary on BBC3 focussing on the every day lives of the inhabitants of the Harpurhey council estate in Manchester. Now, the only thing that held my attention was the sight of a litter of eight ‘boxer’ puppies – eight snow-white puppies galloping through the kitchen and front room of a crowded two up two down styled terraced house. I was intrigued and continued watching. It turned out that the couple owned an almost-identical pair of white ‘boxers’ (siblings?) and, of course, the inevitable happened and a litter was born. The programme followed the couple’s desperate attempts to find the pups new homes before they sank beneath an unrelenting sea of faeces and urine! A friend later told me that the previous week’s episode showed a couple whose pair of ‘chihuahuas’ had given birth to a litter of five pups.