Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Boatswain's Collar Fetches Quite a Price

"Another item at the Tennants sale that cannot have been an easy lot to estimate came from a separate source – a brass dog collar which had once belonged to the poet Lord Byron’s beloved Newfoundland dog, Boatswain. The dog died of rabies in 1808 after being bitten by another dog in Mansfield, and the grief-stricken Byron erected a monument at Newstead Abbey and composed his famous Epitaph to a Dog. The link to Byron was strengthened by the fact that a similar collar can be found in the Newstead Abbey Collection and documentation that came with the lot tracing the item back to its original sale certified by Byron's gamekeeper's widow. The auctioneers plumped for a £3000-5000 pitch, but this level was easily surpassed on the day as it was knocked down at £14,000 to a buyer in the room."

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Monday, November 6, 2017

Summerford Killing

When Summerford's not beating dogs, they're killing them.


Saturday, November 4, 2017

Saving The Newfoundland


Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Invaluable


Saturday, October 14, 2017

Of Dogs and Men, Part XVXVI

Farm dogs leading their cattle out of the flood in Florida and to safety.
All of these animals got out safely.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Sunday, August 20, 2017

A Star Is Born

King of Helluland Over The Top x Cannon Bears Count To Ten

Friday, July 28, 2017


If I should meet thee
After long years
How should I greet thee?
With silence and tears.

(Lord Byron)

Monday, June 26, 2017

Happy 12th Birthday, Andrew!!!

For my best friend and soul mate: may you have the happiest of birthdays and many more.
I love you dearly.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Tug & Paige

Brothers from other mothers.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

The Newfoundland Hero Of The Titanic - Rigel

We can't leave April without remembering Rigel:

The New York Herald, Sunday, April 21, 1912


Rigel, Whose Master Sank with the Titanic, Guides the Car-
pathia's Captain to Suffering Passengers Hid-
den Under Rescue Ship's Bow.

Not the least among the heroes of the Titanic disaster was Rigel, a big black Newfoundland dog, belonging to the first officer, who went down with his ship. But for Rigel the fourth boat picked up might have been run down by the Carpathia. For three hours he swam in the icy water where the Titanic went down, evidently looking for his master, and was instrumental in guiding the boatload of survivors to the gangway of the Carpathia.
Jonas Briggs, a sailor aboard the , now has Rigel and told the story of the dog's heroism. The Carpathia was moving slowly about, looking for boats, rafts, or anything which might be afloat. Exhausted with their efforts, weak from lack of food and exposure to the cutting wind, and terror stricken, the men and women in the fourth boat had drifted under the Carpathia's starboard bow. They were dangerously close to the steamship, but too weak to shout a warning loud enough to reach the bridge.
The boat might not have been seen were it not for the sharp barking of Rigel, who was swimming ahead of the craft, and valiantly announcing his position. The barks attracted the attention of Captain Rostron and he went to the starboard end of the bridge to see where they came from and saw the boat. He immediately ordered the engines stopped and the boat came alongside the starboard gangway.
Care was taken to take Rigel aboard, but he appeared little affected by his long trip through the ice cold water. He stood by the rail and barked until Captain Rostron called Briggs and had him take the dog below.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Ideal Newfoundland (Reprise)

From "The Twentieth Century Dog (Non-Sporting) - Compiled From The Contributions Of Over Five Hundred Experts", Volume 1, Herbert Compton (1904):

"Miss E. Goodall's Ideal Newfoundland - Royal in mien, gentle in manners, docile yet full of dignity, true as steel and faithful unto death, my ideal Newfoundland dog looks as noble as the work for which he was born - the work of rescue. When the Creator endowed him with that sublime instinct which leads him without training or direction, but out of his own consciousness, to save life at sea or in perilous waters, He bestowed on the dog an attribute that makes it not merely the king of dogs, but first in the animal kingdom. Not only to save his master is his understood duty, - there are many gallant hounds who are competent to understand that call upon their intelligence - but to succour the stranger in danger, and to carry from the shore, through surf and breakers and angry waves, assistance to wrecked vessels, labouring at the self-imposed task with a reasoning power and indomitable courage and perserverance that is not to be equalled in the annals of dumb creation. Truly and emphatically a Member of the Royal Humane Society, and worthy to be ranked with the lifeboatsman of our coasts, and the heroes of our Fire Brigades.

My ideal Newfoundland must be great in body as well as soul, with a grand and massive head; broad benevolent brow; small, dark, very intelligent eyes, ordinarily soft with affection but capable of flaming with anger on occasion; small ears hanging close to his head; deep muzzle, not too long; and the whole head and face covered with short hair that feels like velvet to the touch.

His neck is rather long and very muscular; his body proportionate and compact, with well-sprung ribs, and clothed with a dense, flat, water-resisting coat of a deep, rich black colour, long in the neck, where it almost assumes the proportions of a mane; plenty of feather on the tail and fore legs, which must be straight and strong with ample bone, for with these he chiefly battles with the waves, and wins his way. His hind legs are not quite so powerful, and less feathered.

He must be a low-built dog, for anything like legginess would detract from his appearance - that grand, solid, reassuring bulk suitable for a life in the sea. No water animal in the world is long-legged, least of all should the Newfoundland be so. His gait is that of a bear, without the clumsiness; that is to say, he advances the front and hind legs of the same side simultaneously. It is a sea-dog's walk, but he is active withal, as you shall find our British sailors when there is work to do on land with a naval brigade. And let him but glimpse the sea, and you can realise the spirit that is in him, as his exuberant delight carries him with a rush to his favourite element.

For the rest, affectionate, tractable, and especially kind to children, he endears himself to all. As a guardian unsurpassable; always mute except when there is actual danger to be apprehended. Finally - and this is the greatest tax upon his nature - my ideal Newfoundland is not quarrelsome with others of his kind, but bears with them all, his lofty spirit comprehending that though he is their king, out of consideration for his mistress's prejudices he must not insist upon being their autocrat."