BBC Breakfast asked London Scottie Club for help on Monday. They were in touch to ask if someone could come into their Salford, Manchester studios early doors on 27 February to talk about the Kennel Club’s latest survey which has thrust the Scottish Terrier back onto the vulnerable list of dog breeds.

LSC is anything but parochial or confined to the M25 orbital border of Greater London. It has a network of members across the UK since it began admitting Members nationwide in 2022.

But who better to appear on television but Lancashire-based LSC member and Scottish Terrier Emergency Care Scheme Welfare Officer Cath Marchbank?

Cath agreed on Monday evening to drop everything and head down to the BBC television studios in the morning.
This she did with five of her rescued Scotties.

While the debate, which included a representative of the Kennel Club of Great Britain that published the survey, got underway all five Scotties turned out to be great ambassadors for the breed themselves. None barked or ran amok in the high-tech studios.

KC explained that in 1947 it recorded 6,000 new puppy registrations, and now it was down to less than 10% of that, at 400.

But Cath explained the nature of the breed. Not to dissuade loving owners from opening their home to Scotties, but to underscore the point that, like any breed, Scotties are not for everyone.

As Cath first revealed in a London Scottie Radio podcast earlier this month, the number of Scotties that her charity STECS rehomes has shot up to 100 a year.

Cath told LSC after the show that her phone had not stopped ringing all day since her appearance on the BBC programme. But she made the point in the studio that we want responsible owners getting Scotties – and we also want to dissuade unethical puppy farm breeders from expanding supply which they invariably do when the price of pups goes up in the wake of greater demand.

George Matlock of LSC remarked: “I was pleased that the BBC editorial team saw merit in welcoming Cath to talk about the other side of the equation. That while pup numbers recorded by KC may have fallen, there were also many Scotties in need of a home. As a voluntary social and educational group, LSC is proud to work since its inception in 2016 with STECS who do remarkable work helping Scottish Terriers across Britain.

“We hope that appearing on television will help raise awareness of the breed and also promote more funds to be raised for STECS,” he added.

LSC members also had their say on the programme, and the topic. The LSC WhatsApp group – Britain’s biggest Scottie conversation – was ablaze all day with Members expressing their thoughts.

Here are some of the highlights:

 ME: Best breakfast TV item ever! Well done @Cath Marchbank – gorgeous Scotties on show! 

ZM: Well not sure that was a huge thumbs up for scotties? Was the point they want to stop lots of unsuitable wannabe scottie owners from buying them?

KR: I have met Wobble, Honey, and Savannah they are the most beautiful Cath does, so much for Scottie’s .

JW: What was the comment about barking ? Harry never barks unnecessarily ❤️

JF: Well done it was a great piece!

KR: The barking comment I don’t know where that came from.

ZM: Yes, not really a persuasive argument for investing in the breed🙁. But the wheatens were lovely

EW: I loved seeing the Scotties on the TV. All so well behaved. Hopefully will alert people as to what a special breed they are! ❤️

 JW: I thought Cath and her colleague did really well, the Scotties looked charming and loveable. It can’t be easy being interviewed on national TV, but all the hounds just took it in their stride😉🙂 

JG: I just watched it on catch up. Thought it was very good and the dogs behaved so well…. I don’t know where the barking comes from – Ben hardly barks at all, not even at the doorbell… and there wasn’t a peep out of any of the dogs in the studio. I thought they might say something about the wheatens but they didn’t.

 CV: I am quite happy Scotties are not trendy. Breeds run into all sorts of trouble when they get popular 

JC: Just had a look – whenever I see Scotties it makes me smile – those dogs were lovely! The wheatens were stunning. Made me think about getting one …

 ZM: Did anyone send in a picture [to the studio] from one of the meet ups? 

GL: It was a bit disappointing, LSC didn’t get a mention

ME: I reckon Scotties came out very well from the interview and publicity. Cath and the other lady couldn’t have brought along five better behaved Scotties. They looked fab and were lovely with the presenters. STECS rehome Scotties some of which will come from households ill-suited to a stubborn breed, where really the owner just needs a Cavapoo or some other not-really-a-dog type thing. I bet there’s a surge of interest in Scotties after this week’s publicity. Let’s hope so.

AM: I think Cath did well to promote our breed. My colleagues at work said they now want to have one! It would have been great if LSC was mentioned, but I like the programme all the same.

Cath Marchbank responds: I look at it from a rescue point of view They are the best dogs and no other breed will match them but they are not the breed for everyone. Hence marmite!! Last time the dogs came on the list. 4 puppy farms started breeding them again!! I had worked hard getting them to stop breeding scotties. Knock on effect we seeing an increase in problems like under shot jaw. Leg difformaties Scottie cramp CA Cmo. Dogs dying of cancer aged 2!!. Yes 2 years old absolutely riddled with the disease. Huge behaviour issues and nervousness in the breed. If there is a huge demand people breed with out health checks. These problems escalate. Rescue gets busy. So my point of view is a very different one from you the owner. Scotties are actually number 43 on a list of 50 dogs. Dandie dinmonts. There are only 28 dogs registered and these numbers have been like this over the last 10 years. You never find a dandy in a dogs home or thrown out on the street. Scotties are regularly thrown away!! The premises are not checked and not all are licensed breeders. Don’t get me wrong not all dogs are bred in poor conditions, but an awful lot are. The females are mated on first season they don’t get chance to be a puppy. When they have bred their 5 litters the good breeders find them a couch to retire on. Some bitches will have had 5 litters registered 1 per year and other litters sold in between not registered. There is still no way to police the system fully for any breed. This year at STECS we will have rehomed around 100 Scotties. A little Scottie was 1 on Sunday. She has undergone 3 operation to correct her jaw and our charity has spent around £6000 on her. For x rays and chexk up last week bill was discounted down to £898 I see these problems on a monthly basis. So my view is different.

 MH: I hope this drives donations to your amazing work – thank you for everything! 

JC: I really enjoyed the item and thought both contributers did a great job – just so lovely to see Scotties.

Cath Marchbank responds: First e mail this morning 8.15 someone seen the program and them applying for a dog. The phone hasn’t stopped ringing so it’s all good in a round about way! Good breeders will have a waiting list of people wanting a dog before the pups are born. At Christmas we were actually struggling to place some of the dogs we had in looking for homes! So as fate plays its hand we will now have lots of people and no dogs needing homes!. It’s always the same But the right hones always come along.

 JW: Thank you so much I have enjoyed reading all the above. You are truly amazing. 


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