Barbour Dogs: Meet Molly and Colin

Barbour Dogs: Meet Molly and Colin

Barbour Dogs: Meet Molly and Colin
spring summer 2019

We have partnered with Penguin Books and the author of 'Molly and Me', Colin Butcher, who has shared with us his experiences with Molly the detective dog, his insight into pet behaviour and his favourite pieces from the Barbour Dogs range.

Tell us more about your dog Molly?

Molly is a 4 –year-old Working Cocker Spaniel, we found her on Gumtree advertised as an unwanted give-away in need of a good home considered to be unruly and difficult to manage.

Tell us a little bit about UK Pet Detectives?

THE PET DETECTIVES UKPD have been recovering stolen and missing pets for over ten years and is the only private detective agency specialising in the investigation of crimes against pets and their owners. We work with police forces right across the UK advising on animal related crimes and conducting joint operations against pet thieves.

How did you and Molly become a crime solving duo?...without giving too much away!

Molly has been trained by the pioneering charity Medical Detection Dogs to detect missing and trapped cats by using scent match recognition (every cat has a unique scent signature) and is the only dog in the UK that can do this. Molly’s incredible sense of smell enables me to complete searches over a much larger area increasing the likelihood that a missing cat will be found a lot sooner and alive.

Any bizarre encounters that you and Molly have faced?

There have been many exciting and sometimes bizarre adventures, many included within the book. Molly once found a cat trapped in a shed that the owner did not know was missing, found some car keys that a couple had lost in the snow and a tortoise that was hiding under a neighbour’s compost heap.

What makes Molly such a good detective dog?

Molly is a brilliant problem solver, has an incredible memory and is a very fast learner. She can recall every location where she has previously found a missing cat can work out where it is likely to be hiding and picks up new training routines instantly.

What do you love the most about your dog? Does she have a certain character/personality?

Molly is a very smart and intuitive dog and has a warm and loving personality. She loves people and wants to say hello to everyone she meets.

Do you and your dog enjoy the great outdoors?

Molly and I are outdoors every day regardless of the weather. Work-days last for six hours and take place all over the country from the beautiful Suffolk coastline, the lush green fields of Sussex to the busy royal parks of central London. Training days take place twice a week through every season of the year although spring is our favourite time of the year.

With your vast experience as a crime investigator, what behaviours of the pets lead to them to go missing? Or what is the usual scenario to why a pet has gone missing?

Dogs are very sociable and love to say hi to other dogs. They often charge off out of their owner’s sight to greet other dogs where they become vulnerable to theft. Dogs do not like to be left alone in a garden and will often escape and run free and once again become vulnerable to theft.

Cats are super-bound to their territory and find any changes to it to be very unsettling and will often abandon their homes when there is too much disruption or overcrowding. Poor diet - cats are obligate carnivores and rely almost entirely on animal flesh for their nutrition - it is also a major cause of why a cat leaves its home.

Barbour’s shops are all dog friendly, where are some of your favourite dog friendly spots?

I have so many to choose from, however if I had to choose my favourite locations in the UK, I would go with the following:

The Verve Pet Boutique, Notting Hill
Beach Blanket Babylon, Notting Hill
The Speckledy Hen Café, Shamley Green
The Broadway Deli, Broadway Cotswolds
The Lygon Arms, Broadway

What are your favourite Barbour Dog pieces that you own?

Molly is a working dog and in order to maintain her fitness and stamina needs to be exercised several hours every day, regardless of the weather.

Having a Barbour dog jacket is exactly what I need when working her in the countryside on wet wintery days. The robust, non-snag, weatherproof material is perfect for training searches on Bramble Farm and the easy to use fasteners ensure that she has full range of movement when training.

Well done Barbour for coming up with such an ideal garment for working breeds.

Discover more about Barbour Dogs and view the collection here.