THE popularity of the dog as a companion, as a guardian of property, as an assistant in the pursuit of game, and as the object of a pleasurable hobby, has never been so great as it is at the present time. More dogs are kept in this country than ever there formerly were, and they are more skilfully bred, more tenderly treated, and cared for with a more solicitous pride than was the case a generation ago. There are fewer mongrels in our midst, and the family dog has become a respectable member of society. Two million dog licences were taken out in the British Isles in the course of 1goq. In that year, too, as many as qo6 separate dog shows were sanctioned by the Kennel Club and held in various parts of the United Kingdom. At the present time there exist no fewer than 156 specialist clubs established for the purpose of watching over the interests of the different breeds.
Recognising this advance in our national love of dogs and the growing demand for information on their distinguishing characteristics, I am persuaded that there is ample room for a concise and practical handbook on matters canine. In preparing the present volume, I have drawn abundantly upon the contents of my larger and
more expensive New Book o f The Dog, and I desire to
acknowledge my obligations to the eminent experts who assisted me in the production of the earlier work and whose contributions I have further utilised in these pages. I am indebted to Mr. W. J. Stubbs for his clear exposition of the points of the Bulldog, to Colonel Claude Cane for