Blogger Alex Frith is the founder of Barkarama, a website dedicated to pup culture and modern dog lifestyle. Her Boston Terrier Basil is the blog’s chief reviewer and roving re-pawter and here Alex tells us why Boston Terriers are obedient, gentle souls.
What is the name of your dog and how old is he?
Basil Barkarama, 18 months.
Why did you choose this breed?
I first encountered Boston Terriers when I lived in New York, and immediately fell in love with their funny squishy faces and friendly personalities. I read up on them and was won over by the personality description – natural flirts and their easily adaptable lifestyle needs.
What is it you love about the breed?
Aesthetically – it’s the inquisitive eyes and face – the ‘wassup’ head tilt gets me every time – and their athletic little bodies. Personality wise, I love the Boston Terrier’s energy, intelligence and all- round friendliness – I am yet to meet a moody one!
Does he have any special requirements or health issues?
The biggest issue is their eyes so you must do your homework to ensure that your breeder has all the appropriate testing paperwork for Juvenile Cataracts. From first hand (and smelly) experience, and from what I’ve been told by other owners, they can have sensitive tummies but I think you just need to work on finding a food that is right for them.
Does Basil have any special characteristics?
While Basil has a mind of his own, he is very obedient. He’s also a gentle little soul, who loves playing with little children and lapping up attention from all ages, which is why I’ve applied for him to be a Pets As Therapy Dog (we’re just waiting for approval). He’s also possibly the most handsome Boston I have ever seen – but then I might be biased!
Have there been any amusing incidents?
When he was around six months old, I took him to my aunt’s house for an afternoon with the family. Her garden was covered in snow and while Basil was jumping around her garden in his normal Spring lamb fashion, he failed to notice the pond, at the end of the garden, which he subsequently fell into. At the shock of the cold water, his bug-eyes nearly popped out of his head and as a result he HATES water so much so that if we are out on a walk, and there’s a really muddy puddle he either leaps over it or I need to find him a route round it. Ever the Diva!
What is his favourite food?
We have recently switched him over to Natural Instinct raw food, which he is absolutely crazy for. His favourite treats are cheese, dried venison and if he’s very lucky – a bit of fillet steak off-cut.
Does he have a favourite place to hang out?
In Essex where we live: Weald Country Park which has lots of open spaces for him to indulge in his favourite past-time – running like the wind.
Trips to London: Soho as he gets lots of attention. We people watch at dog-friendly Café Boheme on Old Compton Street and conduct our doggy-business meetings for our modern dog blog Barkarama.co.uk at Joe & The Juice on Broadwick Street.
Up North: my folks live in Hoylake in the Wirral so we go for long walks along the beach until we get to West Kirby for at rest at Aubergine Café. Daniel Craig is from that area so every time we walk the beach we pray for a chance encounter!
What would you advise others who are thinking of getting a Boston Terrier?
Like any Pedigree do your homework on the breeder with a starting place being that they are Kennel Club assured. I decided on a Boston almost seven years ago but now they are known as a bit of a fashionable breed, and with that comes puppy farms, where the pups are bred purely for profit and in all manner of horrific conditions. I spoke to my breeder on and off for a very long time and went to see her and all her dogs at her home so I was really comfortable in my decision to get Basil. Also make sure that your pup’s line has been tested for Juvenile Cataracts and that the breeder can produce all the relevant supporting paperwork.
How much exercise does he require and where do you like to take him?
Our shorter, week-day walks are through Brentwood via a small woods so he gets a bit of time off the lead. These can vary between 20-35 mins. Weekend walks are normally over in Weald Country Park where we will walk for an hour or longer off-lead. He’s happy with either. He does have bursts of energy throughout the day so it’s not unusual to see Basil charging past the sofa at a million miles an hour as he runs back and forth between two rooms. I play with him for about 20 mins a day too.
Any downsides of Boston Terriers?
Flatulence, although this does seem to have improved since we switched his food, and snoring on account of their squishy faces.
Get more of Basil at Barkarma.co.uk and follow @Barkarama on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.