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Paws Here!

Dogs' dinners, Labrador life lessons and Rocco Rinder recaps on Crufts

Brigit Grant is the Jewish News Supplements Editor

HERE’S ROCCO

With TV’s favourite legal eagle Robert Rinder as his owner, French Bulldog Rocco is ready to unleash…

For those of you who have not read my column in the main paper, I am Rocco Rinder, the French bulldog, with a very close association to a well-known celebrity judge. As my owner speaks Russian, he was keen to help and report on the devastating exodus of Ukrainians with their beloved pets to safety in Poland. That he was also able to locate the family of his former Strictly dance partner, Oksana Platero, was wonderful, and their seven-day journey to flee the invasion was a sobering thought. To see children and animals in the arms of their loved ones being forced to find refuge in other countries makes me realise how fortunate I am. I hope people will continue to donate to www.worldjewishrelief.org to bolster aid and www.rspca.org.uk, which helps abandoned animals.

On a lighter note (which is why I am here), I wanted to mention Crufts and the BAFTA awards, which I watched while the Judge was away. Flat-coated retriever Baxer was the ‘best in show’ and a worthy winner at a ceremony that saw no political sniping by the poodles or personal agendas from the Pomeranians.

Waffle has to go

LABRADOR JOIE DE VIVRE

Meet Charlie, the 109-year-old Labrador, who still takes long walks in the Arkley countryside. FYI a dog’s ageing amounts to 15 human years in the first year, nine in the second, and five years to every human year after that, so no dog is better placed than 16 1⁄2-year-old Charlie to share the secret of longevity. Charlie was 10 months old when he joined the Kleinman family, and his loud bark as a guard dog belied his sweet nature. His adopted mother, Michele, has kept him on a diet of top-quality kibble, chicken and smoked salmon and says the 60-minute walks made him fit enough to later cope with a huge back operation. Now living with an untreatable cancer, Charlie has proved he’s a fighter and, on the vet’s recommendation, gets more cuddles and treats than ever.Somewhat of a local legend among fellow dog walkers, drivers hoot when they see him. It’s only right when he turns 110 on 1 October, the Queen’s corgis send him telegram.

CANINE A LA CARTE

 

Anyone with a pup probably thinks twice about dining out without them.Suppers aren’t nearly as relaxed when you know the soulful-eyed furry one is at home. So why not reduce the guilt and take them with you to places that host the four-legged willingly? Start by consulting thefourleggedfoodies.com which is run by Archie the canine equivalent of Jay Rayner. Dining in fab places with owner Gaynor, it was Archie who told us about No. Fifty Cheyne in Chelsea, where dogs cavort with SW3’s cognoscenti in an elegant former pub festooned with flowers, art and chandeliers. On bi-monthly Sundays, The Parlour at The Great Scotland Yard Hotel offers the Talula Eats £25 dog menu of organic meat, vegetables and a pink peony ‘pupcake’ served on china bowls. And for Tel Aviv-inspired al fresco, the Chameleon in Marylebone welcomes dogs to a weekend brunch prepared by Israeli chef Elior Balbul and both you and the pup can visit the gallery.

COMFY CREATURE

Don’t be surprised if the extra ‘person’ at your seder this Pass- over doesn’t know the Ma Nishtana, but he/she still deserves a place at the table. Raise them up where they belong on a super stylish padded dining-room chair from www.viadurini.co.uk. Italians do it better, even for dogs.

SEALED WITH A LICK

Once you get a pet, they become an intrinsic part of your family and earn a place on the greeting cards you send. Make it all about them
with personalised ones, which www.cardgnome.com have done for Passover, and you can, too, for New Year come September.

AND FINALLY…

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