The first dog I owned was the only one with much libido: he was actually humping his kennel mate when we first set eyes on him in the dogs’ home. He was totally without prejudice, screwing bitches of any size, shape or colour. The only thing he insisted on was that his progeny should inherit his tail, a magnificent flag that curled majestically over his back.
Where other dogs would cause damage to fences and other property to reach the bitch in season, Speedy just ambled along and waited until she escaped to offer herself to him. He was so successful that I decided to adopt his cool-dude attitude to women; that may well explain why I am still living on my own after all these years.
Tilly is one of those new-age dogs that are named by mangling – I mean ‘combining’, of course - the species of their parents. Labradoodles and Cockapoos and things like that. Less poetic, I agree, than Dandie Dinmont or even Jack Russell but more in tune with the present times.
I have a theory that it is mainly the result of the recession. People discovered that they simply could not support greedy animals like Labradors. Crossing them with daintier eaters like Poodles is effectively an appetite suppressant. It is certainly a more humane way of dealing with surplus breeding stock than letting them starve.
This only leaves the question of purchase price. To justify the high price the breeders charge, your new pet has to have a pedigree so there is a lot of manoeuvring behind the scenes to register the new breeds with the Kennel Club. My daughter is buoyed by the rumour that her pretty little mongrel will soon be recognised as a Cockadoodledoo.