scrappy looking stray dog close up

Who watches Dog House?

Channel 4 Thursday at 7.30

Basically, The Dog House is where people who want to rescue a dog go to the Wood Green Animal Shelter and get matched with a dog based on the criteria they have given the staff in their sit down interview. It’s a bit like Blind Date for dogs.

The staff tease us with a quick peak at several dogs, their history and their personality traits. Meanwhile, the humans are settling into the ‘meeting area’ which is a lovely astro-turfed enclosure with wooden seating.

We hear the prospective dog making it’s way to the door. The humans tense up and watch the door like their lives depend on it. The door opens and collectively we hold our breath waiting to see how the dog will react. Usually the handler and dog sit together until the dog is confident enough to sniff towards their prospective family. Once or twice the dog has run after the exiting handler and we’ve all felt devastated that it’s just not going to be a match. Then there are the dogs that just slot right in and you know they’ve hit the jackpot because the humans are aching to love them and make their lives happily ever after.

Last week, we met Grant. Grant was a horror to look at, he made me itchy just looking at his mangy balding face (see above pic). Grant was a stray and more crust than dog. But I fell in love with him. I texted my friend,

‘Dog House?’

She replied “Grant” with a heart emoji.

So, what is it about the scruffy neglected dogs that draws us in? Is it our mothering instinct? No, because my husband felt it too.

Is it that we have nothing currently in our house that is likely to infest our sofa with mites? I’m joking of course, we have children, and one is a boy!

It’s because it is ingrained in our DNA. We Brits just love an underdog, and quite literally in Grant’s case. But why?

I guess we don’t like old Charlie Big Bananas, we like to see the smart arse smug getting it from an unlikely adversary. I’m reminded of when David Blaine came to London to sit in a glass box suspended over the River Thames for some extraordinary amount of time. The American tourists stood back taking photos in awe of such a feat. A British man, in a suit, arrived with his golf clubs and started hitting the box containing Mr Blaine with a succession of golf balls, and what did the crowd around him do? The Brits fell about laughing, taking photos and applauding him (Blaine was unhurt aside from his ego). In short, no one in the UK gave one shite that David had chosen to ming up a glass box and starve himself, let alone think it was a work of magic, and basically, that was because David Blaine was so pleased with himself for thinking of doing it in the first place.

This is the funniest newspaper article about it, please read and snigger – you’re welcome

https://www.standard.co.uk/hp/front/blaine-pelted-with-eggs-7230273.html

Back to Grant. Yes he got adopted and, when the programme visited him several weeks later, he looked a lot better too, almost handsome and was clearly a much loved pet to his two new mummies.

If you haven’t seen The Dog House you need to. It’s wonderful family viewing and will help create plenty of animated ‘oohs and ahhs’ from every member of your household and the occasional tear if you’re anything like me.

Close up of West highland terrier who has been rescued after being a stray looking well and loved
Grant some weeks later

To support Wood Green or for more info about dog rescue click here

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