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extended, though I have probably mentioned the best bull terriers up to date. Mr. W. Pegg, Woodcote, Epsom, but now of Wimbledon, had for a time a particularly strong kennel of these dogs, which he seemed to give up in favour of bull dogs. He was one of our most successful breeders of the variety, his Woodcote Wonder, \Voodcote Pride, Woodcote Primrose, and some others being particularly good. To him I am indebted for the use of the dogs in the illustration which precedes this article, the natural ears on the animals being particularly appropriate at the time the drawings were made. Since then a more uniform type Of ear has become fairly common, and may-be in a few years the more or less rose or folding ear will be the only style allowed by the club.
Ten years ago, the late Jesse Oswell, of Birmingham—a prize-fighter by profession, but a gentleman in nature—had some good dogs, nor must the names of Mr F. Hinks, Birmingham; Mr. James Chatwin, Edgbaston; Messrs. Marriott and Green, Gloucester; Mr. Rickards, Birmingham; Mr. H. Ryder, Manchester; Mr. Firmstone, Stourbridge; Mr. C. L. Boyce, and Mr. R. Wanamaker, be forgotten, as the owners and breeders of choice specimens of this variety. In London, Mr. A. George, a son of the celebrated Bill George, has given much attention to the breeding and exhibition of bull terriers, and between him and Mr. F. Hinks, of Birmingham, must be divided the honour attending the reputation of being the largeSt dealers in bull terriers in this country ; whilst at the time of writing this the best kennel of the variety is undoubtedly that possessed by Mr. H. E. Monk, of Clapham-road, London. Allusion has already been made to what must be considered the small variety of bull terriers, such dogs as are under I6lb. weight, and not animals of 251b. weight starved down until they can be shown in the class restricted to animals not more than zolb. In our early days of dog shows these little bull terriers were common and remarkably popular. Now a really good specimen is not to be found, nor is there any inducement to reproduce such a dog. Those who can carry their recollection of bull terriers back for thirty years and more, will remember such dogs as Dick, Nelson, little Rebel, Triton, Jenny, Kit, Riot, and others shown by Mr. S. E. Shirley; and Mr. Addington’s Billy, Mr. Willock’s Billy, Mr. F. Godfree’s Napper, Mr. S. Lang’s Rattler (a IOlb. dog), and Mr. Hinks’s Daisy. These were all bull terriers under I6lb. in weight, shapely, well made, smart, and so far as I can learn, and know from my own experience, were as game and hardy as any terrier ever bred. Somehow or other they came to languish ; the classes provided for them did not fill, and with the result that now stares us in the face, the little bull terrier is no more—at least, he is no more in that perfection of form we saw him on the benches in Birmingham and in London, when Mr. Shirley’s gallant little dog Nelson “ruled the roast.”
In 1866 there were twenty entries of bull terriers under rolb. weight at the London show, and at Laycock’s Dairy Yard three years later there were thirty-two bull terriers under 151b. weight against nineteen over that size. Then the former had two classes provided, the latter one class. Now things are otherwise, nor can I agree that the fittest survive. Most of these terriers came from the Midlands, Birmingham being responsible for the best of them. Nelson was so bred; but another good one of Mr. Shirley’s, Dick, had some strain of London blood in him. Unfortunately, the pedigrees of these earlydate little bull terriers were no more reliable than were those of their larger cousins, and I fancy that they were bred so in and in that they became difficult to rear and so degenerated. They were never toys, like the small black and tan terriers, and even when crossed with the White English terrier, then more numerous than he is to-day, they maintained their distinguishing character as well as ~COUld be expected under the circumstances.
It was always to be much regretted that Mr. Shirley did not endeavour, more than actually was the case, to continue the variety; and had he done so there is no reason to doubt that the Ettington Park Kennels might now be as noted for “little bull ” as they are for flat-coated retrievers. Could such dogs as Nelson and “Dick be produced to-dav, I should not be at all afraid of a return to popularity of such a handsome strain. Messrs. F. Godfree, Hinks, \Vatts, Harry Nightingale, Willock, and E. Bailey, all of Birmingham or the neighbourhood, from time to time had excellent bull terriers under I6lb. in weight, and in their days they realised quite as much money as the larger variety.
At one or two of our London shows attempts have recently been made, similar to that which was done with regard to bull terriers other than white, viz., to resuscitate the little dogs by providing classes for them. The result, however, has not met with much success, although, as we have already stated, support was given them by the Ladies’ Kennel Association and by several exhibitors who have the interests of the little dogs at heart. Still, even noble patronage does not seem to sustain and improve these charming little dogs.
There is no doubt that the bull terrier, be he either big or little, never reached that height of popularity his merits deserved, by reason of the obnoxious custom, prevailing until seven years ago, of cropping his ears. This cruelty was originally perpetrated in order that when fighting, the ears would not afford hold for an opponent’s teeth. So the aural appendages were’ cut right off. Later the operation became a much more artistic piece of work, and the ears were so shaped as to stand straight up almost to a point, with an inward. curve, rather than an outward one, which was said to give the animal a smarter and more aristocratic appearance. It might have done so or not, and I cannot deny that some bull terriers with their ears on did look, to say the least, dowdy and coarse\ alongside others that had been properly cropped. This, however, arose from the fact that the bull terrier had been bred with ears that would crop the best—thick at the roots, and just such ears that hung badly and looked inelegant on the dog that carried them. It has not taken many generations to produce bull terriers with nice drop, rose, or semi-erect ears; and that ears can be produced, as it were to order, is plainly in evidence with the example of those of the Irish terrier-before us. I have heard it urged that bull terriers never had such neat natural ears as were sometimes to be