Pub Dog: Oscar, The Hollow Bottom, Guiting Power

When Mum Heather adopted me I was called 'Cole', or possibly 'Coal'. We weren't sure if I'd been named that by my previous owner after Cole Porter or maybe 'coal' as in black.

Name: Oscar

Address: c/o The Hollow Bottom, Guiting Power

Age: 7ish

Sex: Male

Breed: Lurcher

When Mum Heather adopted me I was called ‘Cole’, or possibly ‘Coal’. We weren’t sure if I’d been named that by my previous owner after Cole Porter or maybe ‘coal’ as in black. But, as I’m a brindle Lurcher, that didn’t seem to make a whole amount of sense. Anyway, Mum decided I looked much more like an ‘Oscar’ and that suits me fine.

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According to previous owners I should be nine years old, but Mum’s having none of that. After being checked over by a vet and displaying my boundless energy and puppy-like charms, I’ve had two years officially sliced off my age. Not bad work, eh? I’ve been told that I definitely don’t act like a senior citizen so I must be a young dog… or, as Mum puts it, ‘the oldest swinger in town’. Not quite sure how I feel about that description, but I’m sure she means well.

I love women, and some of my best friends are girls. I have loads of girlfriends that I like to play-fight with in the park and they’re great fun. Now and again, though, they act a little strange around me which can be a bit disconcerting. Actually, come to think of it, some boys get much closer to me than I would like too. Don’t really know what that’s all about. There was one particularly embarrassing incident with a Labrador in a Montpellier wine bar that caused a bit of a fracas at the time, but I’m trying to forget about it…

I once got beaten up by a cat – a big ginger thing it was. I didn’t know what was happening as it just came from out of nowhere and landed on my head when Mum was taking Sirus (my adopted brother who’s also a Lurcher) and me out for a walk. The bloody thing went berserk and clawed at my eyes; it all happened so quickly. I’m rather wary of ginger terrors now. Understandably, I think.

The Hollow Bottom is a lovely dog-friendly pub, that’s also a huge hit with the racing fraternity. I love horse-racing myself and would join in given half a chance… Actually – confession time here – I once managed to slip my harness at the Maisemore races a couple of years ago while watching with Mum and Dad, and joined in alongside the horses. I very nearly won the race too… it could have been my proudest moment. I’d welcome feedback on my running style – just type in ‘Dog in Horse Race’ on YouTube and let me know what you think.

Favourite food: Waitrose’s ready-roast chicken is delicious – Mum sometimes buys two so that Sirus and I get one to ourselves. I love lamb shank from Robin Jenkins, the butcher on Cheltenham’s Bath Road too, but name me a dog that wouldn’t!

Favourite pub snack: As a ‘rescue’ dog, I am a bit of a stealer. Well, it used to be every dog for himself in the old days, so most things are fair game if you’re not keeping an eye on your grub when I’m around. Sausages are a particular weakness.

Favourite drink: My daft mate Sirus is a bit of a boozer. He’s a rescue dog too and developed a bit of a taste for the sauce while with his previous owners. Can’t stand the stuff myself; give me a stinky, stagnant puddle or ditch to drink from any time. Perfect.

Favourite customer: I get on well with most of the people and dogs that come in The Hollow Bottom, but I absolutely adore Katie who works in the pub. She gives Sirus and me loads of fuss.

Favourite walk: There are so many great walks around the pub here. I love wildlife, and chasing hares is a particular pleasure. It’s great to have a wild run and then return to the pub for food, drink, rest and fuss.

Favourite spot in pub: I used to like lying on hard surfaces, like concrete and gravel, but then I noticed how Sirus always went for soft places like sofas, beds, people’s Barbours and stuff, and thought I’d try it too. Now, I’ve got to have a carpeted part of the pub to lie on… preferably in front of the open fire.

Dislikes/pet hates: I really don’t like it when other dogs act strangely around me and try to climb on my back… stuff like that. What is it with boy Labradors in particular? Weird.

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