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Dogs aren't Christmas presents

It may seem as familiar as the nativity at Christmas, but it’s time for a reminder about puppies and Christmas. Don’t buy a puppy as a Christmas present. Apart from anything else, Christmas is far too busy a time for most of us to devote the necessary attention to a new dog. The comings and goings will make it impossible for them to bond with their new pack and settle into a new home.

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The truth about cats and dogs (and other pets)

The American Veterinary Medical Association has produced its 2007 U.S. Pet Ownership and Demographic Sourcebook. The statistics included make fascinating reading. For example, while there are 43 million dog owning households in the USA, there are 37.5 million cat owning households. However, there are more cats – 81.7 million – than dogs – 72 million – in the country. So clearly there are a lot of multi-cat houses.

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Puppy farming in the UK

I’ve been very busy recently recording interviews for future shows, and one that sticks in my mind is one with Margaret Flack. Margaret, with the Kennel Club and the UK dog newspaper Our Dogs, is mounting a campaign to stamp out puppy farms, dog dealing and dog smuggling in the UK. I hope she is successful, and so should each and every dog lover in the UK - and beyond.

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Animal Saviours

I've just come across the Animal Saviours website, who have an onine petition to stop animal suffering in China. Live animals are being skinned for their fur in China. If you would like to stop that, please visit the site and sign the petition at the site www.animalsaviors.org/index.html

Be warned that the video and some of the still images on the site are distressing. But think of your own dog - or cat - and imagine them caught in that nightmare situation.

The site proclaims, "Only animals should wear fur" and I wholeheartedly agree - do you?

Take care,

Julie x

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Willie Nelson Jennings


We have a lot of photos uploaded to our breed profile pages, but this one recently caught my eye. It’s Springer Spaniel Willie Nelson Jennings. It’s not only a beautifully composed photo, but I love the dog’s expression. He looks so wonderfully serious, yet you know probably a split second after the camera clicked he was bounding off to have more silly Springer fun.

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Rescue Dog Rock

I’m interviewing Cynthia Miller next week about her positive approach to rescue dogs. Cynthia has two beautiful rescue dogs of her own, Malteses Lulu and Lolly. Cynthia decided that people need to adjust the way they think about rescue dogs, and to that end Cynthia, Lulu and Lolly have released a music video called Rescue Dog Rock.

It’s a refreshing change to see rescue dogs portrayed in a way that makes you think, “Hey, I want one of those!” rather than making you feel sorry for dogs cast in the role of victim.

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Stick and flick it!


This sign at a local Forestry Commission site always makes me smile. I carry a supply of poo bags with me on every dog walk, and conscientiously bag it and bin it. However, the Forestry Commission here asks dog owners to stick and flick it.

This requires owners to simply pick up a stick and flick the poo off the path, and hopefully means that main paths are poo-free. That’s fine with me, and in the main it seems to work no worse than other locations that require owners to scoop the poop.

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Good news from the Kennel Club

The Kennel Club has at last reacted really well to the furore created by the Pedigree Dogs Exposed Documentary, with this announcement “Kennel Club to Clamp Down on Breeders to Safeguard Health of Pedigree Dogs”. (www.thekennelclub.org.uk/item/2089/23/5/3)

The firs new standard is for the Pekingese, and demands the breed has a muzzle rather than a completely flat face. (www.thekennelclub.org.uk/item/196)

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Kate and Gin


Buddy and I entered a heelwork to music competition at a companion dog show recently. I was thrilled – but nervous - to learn that Kate Nicholas, of Kate and Gin, would be judging the competition. They would also be putting on a display of their own doggy dancing too, and I was greatly looking forward to that.

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Pedigree dogs petition

I've just checked out Beverley Cuddy's blog and found a request to let as many people know as possible about the petition she has organised on the Prime Minister's website.

Irrespective of any “politics” involved, it does seem to me that the petition makes sense. Whatever the true figure is, dogs are suffering and bad breeding practice is going on. The Kennel Club has repeatedly pointed out that they lack any legal power to enforce health tests. This petition sets out to give them that power.

Below you will find a message from Beverley along with where to sign the petition.

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219 - Dog behaviour in lockdown and beyond

Many dogs have been having behaviour changes during lockdown. Author and trainer Melissa McCue McGrath in the USA, and behaviourist and dangerous dogs expert witness in the UK Debbie Connolly discuss their experiences, and some of the questions they've been consulted about. Plus we explore how we can help our dogs move out of lockdown. And there's the DogCast Radio News. Happy listening!

189 - The Dog Healers and War Dogs Remembered

In this episode you can hear Mark Winik talk about his debut novel, The Dog Healers, and listen to Julia Robertson explain why she founded the charity War Dogs remembered. Plus there's the DogCast Radio News, and what Mischief the German Spitz puppy has been up to.

188 - Service Dogs UK and Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home

In this episode you can hear about Service Dogs UK, a fantastic charity which trains assistance dogs to support veterans of any service - military personnel, police, firefighters, paramedics and the coastguard - who develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder due to their job. Also, listen to Dr Jody A Dean, a clinical psychologist talk about how her book, Roxie the Doxie finds her Forever Home, is helping children understand and talk about adoption and other family issues. Plus the DogCast Radio News and some thoughts on the alpha dog myth.

187 - Muffins Halo and Chorley Fun Dog Show

In this episode you can hear about Muffin's Halo for Blind Dogs, and what motivates people to enter their dog in a fun dog show. In the DogCast Radio News, listen to stories about the latest dog related research. Plus there's a new member of the DogCast Radio team!

186 - Maxwell Muir on wolves

In this episode you can hear trainer, behaviourist, writer, broadcaster and wolf expert Maxwell Muir talk about what wolves mean to him personally, their plight in a modern world, and his hopes for their future. Plus we have the DogCast Radio News.