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In our special first anniversary program, we take a look back at our first year. In the past twelve months DogCast Radio has profiled many breeds, including Labrador, Rottweiler, Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, Italian Greyhound, Great Dane, Labradoodle, Yorkshire Terrier, Bichon Frise, and Irish Setter. There has been expert training advice on offer throughout, starting off with Joe Timko at the beautiful Canyon View Ranch. Mim Edwards from Adelaide, Australia, helped solve a variety of training problems, while Steve Fryer and Gwen Bailey from the UK both gave us the benefit of their advice on several issues.
What has really made DogCast Radio what it is, is the characters we have encountered. Right back in episode one, in our Labrador profile, we met a delightful lady who shares her life with three chocolate labradors, all aged under three years old. Labradors have an enthusiastic approach to life, which this owner certainly shared with her dogs!
You've heard of a Boxer dog, but what about a kickboxer? The dog in question is a Black Russian Terrier who lives with Russ Williams. Russ is a martial arts instructor, so when his dog displayed an innate aptitude for kickboxing, it seemed natural to nurture it. Hear the full story in episode two.
Another active group we encountered was the Paddlepaws organisation. The Newfoundland breed generally loves the water, and is an excellent swimmer. This ability coupled with the dog's heritage has lead to the dog being very protective of humans in the water, and water training is an activity that many Newfies and their owners enjoy together. Hear more in episode three.
If you're looking for somewhere to look after your dog in style while you're on vacation, we have discovered the most luxurious venue in the Dog and Cat Hotel. Hear about the glamorous lifestyle on offer here, which includes tastefully decorated suites, each with their own television. The full story was in episode six.
Pam Dennison is the trainer who advised us in episode seven to be unpredictable to keep our dogs motivated. However, when Pam gave her next piece of advice, it was more controversial. Pam's views on kids and dogs in episode nine caused quite a stir, with many of you disagreeing with them. However whether you agree or disagree with Pam, she's a great trainer and a great character.
Can your dog do tricks? In episode eight we met Willy, the clever Bichon Frise who could sneeze on command. Sarah, Willy's owner, taught her dog a variety of tricks, and he certainly was a character. For your chance to hear a dog sneezing on command, listen up!
One of our guests was a mystery figure - Dog Lady. When Dog Lady got her dog, she wanted somewhere to ask all the silly questions you have as a first time dog owner. When no suitable source of wisdom could be found, Ask Dog Lady was born. If you or your dog is looking for an agony aunt with a sense of humour, look no further. Hear more in episode fifteen
One of our most touching characters was Sandy Hall, who we met in episode 18. A lady with a big heart and an even bigger dog, Sandy owns Gibson, the dog who holds the Guinness world record for being the world's tallest dog. Quite by chance, Sandy produced a puppy who grew and grew and grew. Now she thinks one of Gibson's nephews - Bigson - is shaping up to break his uncle's record.
Alongside our interviews, we have brought you our DogCast regulars - the DogCast Radio News, Puppy Playtime, Buddy's Diary and Two Minute Fiction. One story that many of you liked was our Christmas story about the vet and the Weimaraner, so you can also listen to a reminder of that story.
Connie Bowen, pet portrait artist
Since it's our anniversary episode, we thought it would be appropriate to talk about something that could be the perfect gift for any celebration, a pet portrait.
Connie Bowen is a very talented artist, and she talks about the process involved, and shares some of her experiences.
You can hear about the family that argued over future possession of one of Connie's paintings, the Rottweiler who was camera-shy, the input one Cairn Terrier owner had into the portrait of her dog, and many other stories attached to these wonderful portraits.
Below are some of the images talked about in the interview.
All images are copyright (c) Connie Bowen
In the news, we have some good and bad role models for dog owners from around the world.
Plus, fashion has spread to the dog world, and dog products expert Charlotte Reed gives us a sneak preview of what the best dressed canines will be wearing this autumn.
Also, you can hear what the latest status symbol dog accessory is.
In Puppy Playtime, Jenny tells us how Bichon Frise puppy Star has been enjoying a taste of fame.
Plus how so you cope with meeting the exercise demands of two very different dogs?
Two Minute Fiction
Do you ever worry about dogs left alone outside shops while their owners are inside? In Two Minute Fiction, hear about the consequences of this situation from three very different points of view.
Host Julie brings you her reflections on DogCast's first year, and do remember to listen right to the end for Jenny's joke.