Going to the Dogs – or The Dog Days of London

There are few, if any, stray cats in London – the foxes (read my blog later this week) seem to be keeping the cat population well under control – but there are tons and tons of dogs.

When you spend hour after hour standing in a market stall – both at an urban market like Fenchurch Station, and at a neighborhood market like Alexander Palance – you see a lot of people with their constant companions – their dogs!

There are big ones, little ones – ones with jackets – one in a bling covered suit – and one in a full wool sweater, including sleeves on all 4 legs. There are Whippets that look as if they have been rung in the washer for way too long – their fur is soft, but matted to their skin as if it weighs too much to every stand up.

There are tiny little dogs – all of whom seem to sport jackets and coats – and trust me – by Montreal standards – it’s not that cold – even for a small dog. There are long haired and short haired Dachounds – mostly minitures but very cute. I’ve seen countless Jack Russels – and tons of Pugs. What’s interesting about the Pugs are they are huge. Much bigger than the Pugs I’ve spotted in North America – and literally the size of my stuffed Pug that I carry when I’m playing the role of Lady Bertrum from Mansfield Park.

I’ve seen big dogs too – nothing as large as a Newfoundland – but German Sheperds and various kinds of Sheep Dogs abound. There was just one Greyhound – a rescue dog was what I was told. There was even a dog on the train!

Only one stall in the market was selling dog treats – but I’d guess that “going to the dogs” in London is probably not a bad plan if your goal is to make money!

One other observation – most if not all the dogs were leashed. Not the casual leashing of American and Canadian Dog lovers – but a proper harness with a proper leash. And there are rubbish bins clearly marked for dog waste on most corners. In fact often it was easier to find a rubbish bin for doggy-do then for your paper cup of coffee.

Back to the breed identification list – yes I’ve seen the Queen’s dogs – Welsh Corgies, all breed from the one she was given when she was 18. Sounds a bit like in-breeding to me. According to Jan, since she doesn’t want them to miss her when she dies – she’s no longer getting new ones. Now that’s an odd British fact if ever I heard one.

Just one more doggie comment – the gal that was in charge of one of the markets we attended very proudly showed me pictures of her Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. So having a ‘bred’ dog is not as classed based as I had assumed – it must be a British Tradition.

Signing off to look up dog breeds – in case looking turns to buying
The Soup Lady

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