Episode 34 - Greyhound racing, a Labra-lion, barking dogs and more

There's never a shortage of shocking headlines and Debbie and Julie start off with a story sent in by friend of the show Wendy Morrell, who spotted an item about sausages laced with nails and apparently left for dogs to ingest in Abergavenny. Over the Christmas period there were warnings on social media sites that dogs were being put at risk by being offered tempting treats soaked in anti-freeze. These warnings also applied to Wales, and if true were very serious as anti-freeze is lethal for dogs. Thanks to Wendy for her contributions to the show.
Debbie shares a cheering story that Greyhound racing is apparently losing popularity with racetracks closing down around the UK. With Debbie's particular interest in working dogs and her passion for helping retiring working dogs find the best retirement home - see the Bravo Working Dog Rescue website for more info - she finds it appalling that so many Greyhounds are "disposed" of so callously rather than any attempt being made to rehabilitate them and help them adapt to a civilian life. Thankfully, dedicated Greyhound rescues such as the Retired Greyhound Trust exist which help these gentle dogs find loving forever homes. There are many myths about Greyhounds, but though they do enjoy an outlet for a short burst of energy, after a quick run a Greyhound's favourite place is curled up somewhere warm and comfortable.
There was a scare in Virginia recently when police received reports of a sighting of a lion walking down the street. Julie tells how the police went as far as contacting the zoo to check no lions were missing, but it turns out the "lion" in question was a Labradoodle that had been clipped to resemble a large cat. The dog's owner, Daniel Painter, is a fan of the football team at Old Dominion University whose mascot is a lion. However, this story stirs up controversy on the show - but just what is the objection? And is it right to groom a dog in such an exotic fashion?
Dr Elsa Flint is the behaviourist who features in Debbie's next story. Dr Flint has been researching barking dogs is New Zealand, and has come up with some interesting findings. It's very easy for owners to become stressed if their dog is accused of being too noise and disturbing neighbours, but Debbie advises owners in that situation to stay calm and monitor their own dog's barking. Julie points out that no council demands that a dog has to remain completely silent, and that it's the frequency of a noise nuisance that causes most trouble. What do you think of Dr Flint's claims to be able to tell from recordings what is causing a dog to bark?

Julie's taking her high horse out for a gallop in response to a story from Lincoln in which a man left his 14 year old Labrador in his van on his drive, and then the van and the dog were stolen. There are many issues with this story - and it's a shame that some owners still choose to leave their dogs in vehicles, and even worse tied up outside shops, at risk of theft. In this story the dog's owner feels his dogs need neither collar nor microchip as they are "fully trained". What's your response to that sentiment? ANyone who has any information about the silver Ford transit van registration WGO7 XZO in which poor Tank was stolen should call 101 quoting incident number 412 of January 7, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111. Mr Brocklesby is available on 07857 102519.

When three year old Trafford-James Jackson-Poole and his Mum visited a pub one afternoon they had no idea the outing would have such serious consequences. As the family left the pub Trafford-James wandered away and encountered the Akita who lives at the pub, and was bitten. Whatever the true circumstances of the event, poor Trafford-James has been left with an awful injury which will need further surgery. Opinion seems split on this one in the comments left on articles online, with some people damning the whole Akita breed, and others saying parents need to supervise their children better. We'd like to wish Trafford-James a speedy recovery. How would you ensure further attacks or bites are avoided?

After a serious show we need a very uplifting Schmaltz Corner to send us away with a smile, and Julie has pulled out all the stops with the tale of Forest, a poor Mastiff who was shot and tied to a tree in Ohio. But Forest has found an excellent forever home, and the man who shot him is in court this month, so just what does picky Debbie find fault with? Could it be a stomp-free week?