Tuesday 28 April 2009


I once had a dog. I miss the blissful softness of his silken spaniel ears and the guilty thud as he flopped off the sofa whenever he heard me coming. And I've never forgotten the disconcerting way he used to stare me awake with his baleful, unblinking eyes.

I still yearn for my dog. Forget fervent promises of visiting rights and access, custody was as good as lost the minute the removal van moved my things out of the house. Losing him to my ex was the bitterest part of a bitter ending, and the one thing I find it hard to forgive.

Occasionally, and heartbreakingly, I still glimpse him from across the other side of the park, being walked by the unspeakable one. I immediately duck behind the nearest tree for fear of having to attempt a civilised conversation, still impossible at ten years distance. Erm, I mean, impossible with the ex... obviously, I could talk to the dog... tee hee.

Actually, the dog was always appallingly badly behaved: very much the Alpha-male, belligerently ignoring his position in the pack. I once fed him an entire tin of Good Boy chocs, in the vain hope that they would do what they said on the can. My Ex and I both corrupted him horribly, each trying to get the dog to like one more than the other: the life of a tug-of-love puppy is ever thus. His behaviour deteriorated dreadfully of course, after we split up. And he would probably have ended up with a canine ASBO, if he hadn't had the excuse of coming from a broken home.

Anyway, as ever, the tail of this particular story is wagging the dog in the worst possible way. My intention was not to take you through a morose ramble round my past, but to share Dan Burn-Forti's magnificent pictures of the finest dogs you've ever seen, published in the June issue of UK Esquire magazine. From Stanley to Bluebell, these dogs are a perfect and adorable foil for the season's latest accessories, and gladden the heart of all who look at them.

This is Jack, in Dior Homme

Archie, in Brooks Brothers

Bee, in D&G

Stanley, in a Bailey of Hollywood pork pie hat: very Brad Pitt, no?

Mollie, in Cutler & Gross

Inka, in Thomas Pink

And, especially for Belgianwaffling and LibertyLondonGirl, Bluebell in Louis Vuitton

'Doggy Style': Reproduced with the kind permission of Esquire magazine. Photographed by Dan Burn-Forti.

To see the full story, and other examples of clever, brilliant journalism, the June issue of UK Esquire is on sale on 7th May at all key newsagents, or you can subscribe from only £15 for 12 issues. http://www.esquire.co.uk/


Waffle said...

Ah Bluebell, Queen among weepettes. DIVINE. I love you and her.

If you ever need to borrow Oscar, I will parcel him up and send.


Razorkitty said...

I. Want. Bee.

Give to me NOW.

Mutter said...

I'll take Jack, he looks so intelligent.
P.S. I've tagged you....

Top Bird @ Wee Birdy said...

Awww, bless their little waggy tails. Brilliant shoot, btw! xx

Mrs Jones said...

I SO want a little dog to call my own. The Husband won't let me as he thinks it'll upset the cats...

Lucy Fishwife said...

I think I may be in love with Bee. Cats Of Evil prevent acquisition of dog. To this end Mr F is quite obviously waiting for them to die, which is why they like me more than him (that and the tin opener). Concerned by apparent inclusion of Christian Bale though. Despite barking attacks I would have called him foxy rather than doggy.

Tottie Limejuice said...

Never one to be left out of a fashion trend, my collie, Ci:
http://twitpic.com/45lnq - Glamping, collie-style, in Italian silk bandana

Titian red said...

For me it would have to be Stanleyand his hat, but not convinced anyone could cope with 2 Danes (Gertrude didn't do too well did she ?)

Liberty London Girl said...

Bliss, bliss, BLISS. Thank you my darling. Weepette porn always makes my day. LLGxx

pps we have a stumpy legged psychotic dachsie that needs lots of walks & lives with lil'sis by Hampstead Heath if you ever need some woof action. xx

Tania Kindersley said...

Bluebell in the Vuitton bag has made my morning. I have a very nice Tanner Krolle bag and am currently seeing if I can fit either of my dogs into it. Being rough country dogs who mostly like digging for moles, they are not that impressed.

Anonymous said...

I love dogs, but raising one tends to demand more energy and devotion than I can dish out at this life stage.

Also, I feel none will be able to equal Evil Jimmy, the iconic Cocker Spaniel from my childhood.

Jimmy was a natural delinquent, having started his puppyhood in a Montenegran bar where he developed his foul temper and a passion for beer and grilled meats and when he started to show the former by growling at customers in order to steal the latter the owner of the bar gave him away to my dad. And my dad thought this tiny, fierce, growly ball of untamable non house trained fluff shall delight my family. I shall take it to them.

And Jimmy truly was unparalleled in devotion, evil and genius. I don't think he thought of himself as a dog as much as an honourary human (and superior to everyone in the household when my dad wasn't around).

He had very specific Rules. He would protect us with his life, but if we did anything to offend his pride then he would bite us. People (who were not us) could bring anything they wanted into the household but they could not remove anything (which we learned to everyone's peril when he attacked the handyman who came to remove our old fridge).

He was a cleptomaniac and in summer he would range far and wide and bring us all sorts of treasures - glasses, watches, toys, single shoes, which we would then have to hang out on the washing line and watch as ill-tempered owners came to claim them.

Jimmy was a dog of superb intelligence, and he nver forgot an insult. He could wait literaly years to exact his revenge, but in the end exact it he would. There was a man Jimmy loathed with a fierce passion for this man had hit him savagely with a sun umbrella when Jimmy was small. And one day this man came to repair our car on the condition that we locked the dog in the house.

My mum locked him in the living room, closed the door and shut the windows (which could not be fully bolted because of the mosquito netting hammered into the windoframes) but she barred them with two chairs. But Jimmy dragged one of the chairs away with his teeth, climbed on top of the other one and opened the window with his paw, then retreated to the opposite side of the room, charged, leaped on the chair and with a magnificent leap tore through the mosquito netting like a black panther, launched himself at his Nemesis, bit him deeply in the arm and then retreated all happy and calm and wagging his tail.
It was ghastly but magnificent at the same time.

He was as fierce in his adorations as in his hatreds. One summer he fell in love with an Alsatian and spent every day in front of her door, despite the fact that it was nearly 40 degrees Celsius and that his all black fur and his passion earned him sunstroke. He also worshipped my father and when he died Jimmy cried real tears, took one of my dad's shirts and retreated beneath the bed for a week refusing all sustenance. For the rest of his life he would prick his ears and jump to run after white cars if a man was driving them (our car had been white). After my dad's death Jimmy felt he was responsible for the three remaining females and every night he would patrol the house checking up on each of us in turn, sleeping a bit nestled next to each and then going on to check on the other one.

He was always fiendish - he loved to collect things, especially turtles which he'd drag up from the forest and turn on their backs so they couldn't escape and then shove under the bed and guard.

He was unique and he is irreplacable to me.

Babycakes said...

So funny. You do get so attached to them. They always like you and never really have off days.

Cassandra said...

Archie and Mollie forever!!! Very much a terrier girl, provided he/she isn't yappy.

Rose said...

I want a dog even more now! I still miss my childhood dog, I'm an only and she was my little friend. I can't imagine being part from one you'd had for a long time.

I love Stanley! I like a big, proper dog!

Jack is certainly a head turner too though

westendmum said...

I love Inka in Pinka.

vicki archer said...

Gorgeous pups - love them all, xv.

The Subtle Rudder said...

There's something about Inka's archly expressive ear that makes me eager for pats and nibbles...but where are the chihuahuas??

Errant Aesthete said...

Once you have known, loved or lost a four legged spirit (which I believe weepette captures perfectly), delinquent or diva, fouled or fair, mangy or magnificent, it matters not -- you know unendurable longing and irreplaceable sadness. My first and truest love (even as an adult) was a species other than my own and I mourn him still.

Kate Lord Brown said...

Adorable. Not sure Louis V has anything large enough to cope with the hound (vintage trunk perhaps?). She is divine but am thinking pug next time - she never has a bad hair day, I do.

Babycakes said...

I'm very well, thank you, Mrs Trefusis. How are you? I like what you said about my writing!
Creative writing course is over, it was fun. I think the main thing that I've learnt, is that if you want to write, then 'just do it' and keep writing.
Thank you for advice on coffee machine, that is an excellent idea.

So Lovely said...

My favourite dog was an insane boxer named Clooney (I'm positive that he resembled George too). Clooney and I would spent hours in my playpen where I would share my biscuits with him. To this day. I am amazing that I didn't get worms.
Have you thought about a kidnapping situation?

Anonymous said...

I adore Bee, how cute is that little pup??

I just found your blog and I love it!