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Selection from the This England Column of The New Statesman

I think the dog owner is responsible for his dog biting postmen. The animal picks up the mail and carries it to the owner. It may be a rates bill, an income tax demand. The owner grumbles and the dog thinks the postman is the cause of his master's displeasure. The cure lies with the owner. He should read every letter with pleasure if the dog is present.

(Letter in Daily Mirror)

The Rev. O. R. Acworth, Vicar of Chobham, ruled yesterday that a dog cannot be a Christian unless it has been baptized. "As I cannot imagine any vicar baptizing a dog," he said, he was against parishioners who put crosses on dogs' graves.

A theological dispute on whether dogs have souls broke out after the owner of a Great Dane put a cross over the grave six months ago. Objectors broke it and took it away. A poll in the village on whether a dog has got a soul yielded 24 who had signed "Yes" and 15 "No".

(Sunday Telegraph)

Frilly "modesty" panties for dogs are being made by Mrs Deborah Lewis, wrho is campaigning for dog-owners to make their pets look "decent". Mrs Lewis's own dog, Mitzi, a six-month-old poodle, wears a set of blue and black panties with black lace frills. Mrs Lewis said: "I don't think she'd be without them now. She hardly looks happy until I have put them on her each day."

(Sun)

I wonder if any readers have pets who love to be cleaned by the vacuum cleaner, as mine do? Every morning, before I clean the carpets, my dog and three cats line up and won't budge until I have vacuumed them.

(Letter in Woman's Realm)

In reply to the comments concerning dogs riding on bus seats, may I say that I am considerably smaller than my German wolfhound. On the few occasions we have had to travel together upon a crowded bus, it has proved impossible for the dog to stand in the gangway without being brutally kicked by other passengers. It has thus been a matter of convenience that the dog may have my seat, and at times on long journeys I have sat on the floor (I have weak legs). This has invariably made me the butt of much callous laughter, and such inept comments as "Why don't you bring a camel as well?" show the ignorance of most of the travelling public.

(Letter to Nottingham Evening Post)

Toy Poodle "Sunshine" thanks the many well-wishers for telegrams and congratulations on winning Supreme Champion at Cruft's.* With her owners, Mr and Mrs Perry, she looks forward to meeting other top dogs at the dogs' supper party, Hampton Court, next Friday.

* (Cruft's - the annual Dog Show in London.)

(Advert in The Times)

Pretty Shirley Martin, aged 19, of Woolverstone, near Ipswich, could not bear her pet spaniel Marty missing her wedding. So she made the dog one of the five "bridesmaids" when she married Mr Gordon Musson, of Highgate Road, Kentish Town, London, at Woolverstone, yesterday. Marty wore a pink lame dress and a big bow.

(News of the World)

The International League for the Protection of Horses runs a special farm in Norfolk for retired working horses. Some of the residents are railway horses. And the railway people specially asked that these animals should be put in a field with a railway line running through it, so that they can hear the hoot of the engines and the rattle of the wagons. Thus they will "feel at home" and not be nervous without familiar sounds during their well-earned rest.

(Sunday Mirror)

I have always supplied the birds in my garden with nesting material, wool, feathers - even combings from my Siamese cat. And in Coronation Year* I made sure they were "with it" by putting out scraps of red, white and blue** wool.

* (Coronation Year-1953, the year of coronation of Queen Elizabeth II "with it" - (coll.) up-to-date.)

** (red, white and blue - the colours of the British flag.)

(Letter in Sunday Express)

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