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Moorland 'dog-blog' launch at Crufts

This is an archived press release

Monday 5 March 2007

5 March 2007

Moorland 'dog-blog' launch at Crufts

A ground-breaking audio “dog-blog” encouraging owners to take special care of their dogs and wildlife on the Peak District moors, will set tails wagging at Crufts (Thur March 8).

The world’s largest dog-show will see the launch of “Paws on the Moors,” a 25-minute light-hearted audio-play which dog-owners can download onto their MP3 player or mobile phone and listen to as they walk. It follows the adventures of six dogs through their fictitious online diary (known as a web-log, or “blog” for short).

The podcast was developed by the Moors for the Future Partnership, based in the Peak District National Park, to highlight the need for dog-owners to be extra-vigilant on moorland, particularly during the bird-nesting and lambing season (March to July).

Stephen Jenkinson, access advisor for the UK Kennel Club which supports the podcast, said: “This entertaining, informative approach gives people excellent advice about keeping their dogs happy and safe on the moors, whilst protecting rare birds and wildlife. A pet roaming off-lead at the wrong time or place can cause distress and serious injury for dogs, farm animals and wildlife alike.”

Moors for the Future commissioned Peak District writer Pamela Butler to create “Paws on the Moors,” with help from the UK Kennel Club and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. The play features Barney, a young collie-cross, learning about the delights and dangers over a year on the moors. Through his “dog-blog,” Barney makes new friends, including two experienced working dogs who help reform the mischievous Bingo, a Lakeland terrier who likes to bite off more than he can chew, and Kipper, a hearing dog.

Dan Boys, Moor Care officer who master-minded the whole project, said, “From our research we discovered that many owners are simply unaware of the risks posed to wildlife and livestock by uncontrolled dogs, and indeed to the pets themselves. We hope the light-hearted approach of the podcast will illustrate some of these issues.”

The dogs were voiced by the Graduate Theatre Company of the University of Derby, and the same actors will be performing a live version of the podcast at eight venues around the Peak District moors in May, a critically-sensitive time for young birds and lambs.

Its launch at Crufts (at the NEC in Birmingham March 8-11– www.crufts.org.uk), is hoped to reach as many dog-owners as possible. The podcast can be downloaded from the Moors for the Future website (www.moorsforthefuture.org.uk) by following the links to “Paws on the Moors”. The website also includes a wealth of information for dog owners, including information on pet friendly accommodation and local vets.

This is an archived press release

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