The human and animal kingdoms were rocked this weekend by the news that dogs have resigned from their official position as Man’s Best Friend.
For centuries the two creatures have been the closest of pals with dogs providing man with companionship, warmth, love and affection, while humans reciprocated with a tin of dog food, the odd bone, a stick to fetch and occasional half-hearted patting.
But now it seems that dogs, once seen as uber-loyal, are switching their loyalties. ‘It suddenly occurred to me, ’ said Fido*, a border collie from Roehampton. ‘That real best friends wouldn’t mind a few hairs around the place. Or if once in a while I happened to come in with muddy paws. I mean, it’s no biggie is it, but my owner goes mental. I thought it was just me, but then I got talking to Rover* next door and it appears it’s the same story everywhere.’
At one stage attempts by Relate to bring about a reconciliation between the two sides seemed to be going well, but broke down when the poodle leading the dog delegation jumped up on to a sofa.
Dogs are currently reticent to reveal who their new best friends might be, though species under consideration are thought to include terrapins, marmosets and coypu. Friendly overtures towards cats were apparently met with a look of utter disdain.
* Some of the names in this story have been changed.