by Mr. E.T. Unwin
Members of the working terrier association will be interested in a letter by Mr. E.T. Unwin, for it is to encourage the breeding o terrier of the stamp to be seen at Strealey-on-Thames that the association was formed two years since. Mr. Waldy has done a great deal towards bringing lovers of the working terrier together and through bringing his efforts as hon. secretary the association has been the means of useful information about certain scares strains being circulated and breeders afforded the opportunity of change of blood. According to the description given by Mr. Unwin, the hero of the episode in the South Berks territory is not unlike terriers of no particular breeding, but endowed with exceptional gameness, which are to be met with in the Lake District and the Border country, the last one we saw intuit locality being at Gilsland in the autumn of 1908. Judged by his appearance, he was about the same weight as the Streatly terrier, and though bearing a great local reputation, we doubt whether he could clim such a record as that which is held by the one written about by our correspondent. The Border terrier, noted as a work, is quite a distinct variety, and far more scarce than the Patterdale and other terriers sen at the shows which are held in the Lake District during the autumn. As a fact, the only Borderer we met with during the stay in the district from which the breed derives its name was one which came into Alnwick with Mr. H.P. Green and Mr. R.B. Hay, the judges at the trials of the Span’el Club in the late autumn. Thought not as goof a specimen as some which are shown in the classes provided at Bellingham, Kelso, Falstone, and other representative shows on the Border circuit, his appearance aroused interest even among the spaniel men, and in reply to a question which has since been put to us as only this week that quite good dogs ca ne seen any time in the neighborhood of Dunns a small town in Berwickshire, our correspondent kindly mentioning Bogend, near Dunns, s the place from which the best Border terriers are known to be sent. The result of inquiries which are being made as to the origin of Mr. Unwin’s hero will be given in the Field for the benefit of the scores of lovers of the working terrier which are known to exist in every country where there are foxes to be bolted or badgers to be dug out.
Follow up article a week later
Lovers of the working terrier have written for different parts of the country in admiration of the straitly-on-thames terrier who show of gameness in the South Berks country was written about by E.T. Unwin in last weeks Field.
The opinion then expressed, that he is apparently a throw-back to a Border terrier though not actually of that breed-as held by, among others, the hon. secretary of the Working Terriers Association, and Mr. Waldy mentions the poorness of a little black and tan bitch of the same kind which ran with the Culmstock otter hounds in 1904-5. She was a little heavier then Whisky, who is undoubtedly a marvel for his inches and weight, though we hear from a reader who knows the terrier that while very small he looks to be more then the weight mentioned by our correspondent. Mr. Unwin, however has kindly undertaken to make the fullest inquiries as to Whiskey’s breeding and antecedents, and it is not unlikely as mentioned by another reader of the letter, that he is breed the same way as Mr. J. Douglas Groves’s strain of rough coasted terriers, a specimen of which was illustrated in the Field some months since. They have been bred for work, and are well known in both the Belvoir and Quorn countries as among the gamest of game. Their average weight is from 10lb to 12lb and in many respects they are not unlike the Sealyham. The subject of the working terrier is so interesting to many of our readers that we welcome particulars of any little known strains, and in reply to the student of breeding who ask wether or not a rough-coated dog, of the size and general appearance of the fox terrier, but dense black in colour, had ever been bred. We can affirmative answer, for less then ten years since a veterinary surgeon, a native of Yorkshire, but practicing in Kent, evolved such a dog one after a long series of experiments. We should accept with pleasure his invitation to see a team he had bred, quite true to type, and through classes were guaranteed at one or two suburban shows with a view to the variety becoming known to, death of the originator stopped further breeding experiments and the kennel dispersed. From the day to this nothing more had been heard of the Orpington terrier.