Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Who Let The Dogs Out?

...well, I did, Dear Ones! But just for a short amount of time!

Since I showed you my mantlefestation yesterday I thought this would be the perfect "next" post! Here in our den we have built ins on either side of the fireplace. Now this particular cabinet has glass doors and it was the perfect place to become my 'dog house'! :) You see I collect Staffordshire dogs. Now some are the real thing and some are just copy cats, we won't call them faux because they're still little darlings. As you can see, most come in pairs but I have an odd one here and there.

You know how I love to tell you little stories and today is the day I've chosen to tell you a little history of these darling Staffordshire spaniels! I have done my research so I will be telling you the gospel truth. That's the best kind, don't you think? :)

Staffordshire pottery dogs come from pottery companies located in the County of Staffordshire, England. The spaniels are the most common and come in many sizes, shapes and color schemes and were mainly displayed on fireplace mantles. They were first produced in 1720 but at the end of the 19th century the interest in these little dogs declined. :( These Staffordshire spaniels dropped out of favor with collectors until the 1920s and 1930s. Now the truly old pieces are very pricey. I don't have any antique ones, but I do have reproduction Staffordshire.

This shelf holds some of my 'real' Staffordshire spaniels. Did you know these mantle dogs were also called "pot dogs" or "china dogs". Staffordshire spaniels are the quintessential Victorian decoration! Of all the figures the potters created (they produced many different figurines - royalty, famous people, cottages, commoners, politicians and even murderers as well as other breeds of dogs) these sets of whimsical spaniels became the favorite!
You see the bigger dog on the left? Well, he's not even from England, but Portugal! He doesn't even resemble my Staffordshires, but I saw him and his twin on Ebay and had to have them and you're looking at the rest of the story! He and his twin belong to me now! On the right is one of my little lone spaniels.

Okay, on with my little story...ever wonder why these little spaniels make us think of the charm of the Victorian era? Well, Dear Ones, it's because they offer a direct connection to Queen Victoria. Yes, they do!

These little dogs are fashioned after the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, who were named for King Charles II of England who was constantly surrounded by these merry little dogs and gave them free run at court.
It was Queen Victoria who brought the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel to prominence. And it was her love for her own spaniels that attracted the attention of Staffordshire potters in the mid-19th century. Now this is cute, listen...her beloved companion "Dash" became famous and the subject of many artists. On the day of her coronation, she hurried back to Buckingham Palace to perform an important duty - to give Dash his bath! :) A gal after my own heart!Little Dash was buried on the grounds at Windsor Castle and his epitaph reads:
"His attachment was without selfishness; His playfulness without malice; His fidelity without deceit; Reader if you would live beloved; and die regretted, profit by the example of Dash."

I know some of you probably think, these figurines don't look like dogs at all! I think that's why I've fallen head over hells with these dogs. They're just a hoot! I love these little faces.
These little Staffy is certainly a working dog...see? She's busy picking flowers for me every day!

This is one of two of my biggest Staffy's. Mr. Precious got me this pair for Christmas one year! There's a reddish spot on top of his tiny head and the story goes when Winston Churchill was in Europe fighting the Battle of Blenheim, his wife was at home nervously waiting to hear the outcome. She found comfort by holding one of their spaniels that was soon to have puppies. As she stroked the dog, her thumb was frequently pressed on it's tiny head. Her dog had five pups, each with a spot resembling a red thumb print on the top of its head. The mark became known as the Blenheim spot. Churchill won the battle of Blenheim and was rewarded with a great house called Blenheim Palace of which Mr. Precious and I have toured before. You'll see that spot on many of the reproduction Staffys.
Isn't she a beauty? She has the spot!
This is one of two of my smallest Staffys.
Now, this is also one of two Staffys and when I received them I took a closer look...looks a little like a bunny to me, what do you think?
This, also one of two, was my first pair of Staffys! Look at the expression on his little face! Is this what we call 'bright eyed and bushy tailed'? :)
These two little Staffys look a little like Queen Victoria's little Dash, don't you think? Notice 'the spot'! :P
This figurine is not a Staffy at all, but Majolica. I was in an antique store and heard some giggling. I started looking all over the place to see who was so happy! Well, I turned around and saw this little couple just giggling and snickering! I started laughing too and just picked them up and brought them home with me. Oh, I didn't steal them, Dear Ones, I did pay for them! They've never stop giggling! I love these little happy ones! :) They both have 'the spot'! :)
Here is a dashing Staffy couple who look just a bit scared I think! But they're very happy to live in my dog house. I do enjoy my Staffys who live in my dog house and every now and then there will be a new resident! I'm closing the door now so let's just tip toe out of the room every so quietly so they can take their afternoon naps!

Hope you've enjoyed coming to my dog house and meeting my Stafforshire spaniels.

Be a bunch of sweeties,
Shelia :)

I'll leave you with a little Note Song~


Who let the dogs out

{woof, woof, woof, woof}
{woof, woof, woof, woof}
{woof, woof, woof, woof}
{woof, woof, woof, woof}

Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}

{woof, woof, woof, woof}
When the party was nice, the party was jumpin' {Hey, Yippie, Yi, Yo}
And everybody havin' a ball {Hah, ho, Yippie Yi Yo}
I tell the fellas ":start the name callin':" {Yippie Yi Yo}
And the girls report to the call
The poor dog show down

Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}

I see ya' little speed boat head up our coast
She really want to skip town
Get back scruffy, back scruffy,
Get back u flea infested mungrel

{woof, woof, woof, woof}
{woof, woof, woof, woof}
{woof, woof, woof, woof}
{woof, woof, woof, woof}

I'm gonna tell {Hey, Yippie, Yi, Yo}
To any girls calling them canine {Yippie, Yi, Yo}
Tell the dummy "Hey Man, It's part of the Party!" {Yippie Yi, Yo}
You fetch a women in front and her mans behind {Yippie, Yi, Yo}
Her bone runs out now

Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}

Say, A doggy is nuttin' if he don't have a bone
All dogy hold ya' bone, all doggy hold it
A doggy is nuttin' if he don't have a bone
All dogy hold ya' bone, all doggy hold it

Wait for y'all my dogs, the party is on
I gotta get my girl I got my mind on
Do you see the rays comin' from my eye
What could you be friend
that Benji man that's breakin' them down?

Me and My white short shorts
And I can't seek a lot, any canine will do
I'm figurin' that's why they call me faithful
'Cause I'm the man of the land
When they see me they do:ah-ooooo(howl)

Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
Who let the dogs out {woof, woof, woof, woof}
~sung by Baha Men



48 comments:

  1. Look at you Shelia! You've been hiding that collection all this time. :) Your doggies are very special. We all love doggies. Thank you for sharing them today.

    What else do you have hiding in that big house?

    Have a great day.

    Stacey

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  2. Your 'bow wow' collection is awesome! They're all so cute!

    Hugs,
    Carol

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  3. I love your collection Shelia! I've often seen these in antique stores but never really knew the history behind them. You have answered all my questions and they have such an interesting history. I especially love the one holding the basket of flowers. I also noticed your "Cloche Party" icon announcement and plan to join that too. I really enjoyed your post and your collection is displayed so beautifully. Wish you were here to help me decorate my bookshelves!

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  4. Your collection is remarkable! My goodness, I had just the nicest time looking all of of them. Being a dog lover and being someone who want to have a KCS one day...this was a treat!

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  5. This is a great post...I had often wondered about the Staffordshire dogs but never researched it...so you just gave me an "education" ...thanks so much ...these doggies are wonderful...

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  6. Thanks Shelia.....now I'm going to be singing "Who Let the Dogs Out" all day. I've already started.

    Your doggies are adogable (tee hee hee).....I mean adorable. I've really learned alot today about your doggie collection. Thanks for enlightening all in bloggyland.

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  7. I love this collection, and I did not even know the history! I will always look for the "spot" from now on!

    Thanks for sharing this gorgous collection!

    Look at your note song today! Baha Men ~ You go girl!

    Lou Cinda :)

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  8. What a fabulous collection you have!

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  9. What fun! I loved seeing your wonderful collection and your mantlefestation! Your home is so beautiful Sheila and you are very talented! God Bless! Lauralu:)

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  10. WOW Shelia I think your collection is magnificant!! I LOVE those dogs!!

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  11. Your collection is just gorgeous. I also really loved learning the history of the Staffy's. I didn't know anything about them, but I always admired them. YOur display is beautifully done. They each have such a prominent place in your "Dog House". Love it. Hugs, Marty

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  12. What an absolutely beautiful collection Sheila! You are just full of surprises! I was wondering...in the first picture at the bottom it looks like you have a doggy lamp at the bottom? Is it a lamp or just an optical illusion?
    They are all such conversation pieces. I love the "history" that you added.
    Have a wonderful day!
    ~Sherrie

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  13. Hi Shelia, what a collection!!!! Girl, you are a mystery....I love it. They are so sweet!

    Hugs, Barb

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  14. Sheila,
    The puppy dogs are darling and I enjoyed seeing your collection.
    Thank you for sharing. This was nice to see what you enjoy collecting.
    The ending song was just right...laughed. Still like this song.
    Blessings,
    ~Deanna~

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  15. Hi Sheila
    Your collection is wonderful. How many dogs do you have altogether? My favorite is the one holding the basket of flowers. I love them all, the ones with the spots and the ones without. I really enjoyed your factual account of the history of these cute dogs. I knew nothing about their history until today. I have learnt a lot. Thanks so much.
    Lindsay
    x

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  16. I'm so glad you posted this. I was squinting yesterday as I tried to see just what you had in these shelves. Now we all know that squinting makes for wrinkles, and goodness sakes, I do not want any wrinkles on my youthful countenance ...

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  17. this looks great girl!!! I love the way you display your collections!

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  18. What a great collection!! I've often admired the doggies in shops, but have managed to allude their charms. Sally

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  19. Shelia, you're a hoot with all those Staffy's! What a great collection!

    Thank you for wishing me well. I'm a little better but my throat still feels like a sandpaper! So just visiting a few blogs today...

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  20. Oh Sweet Pickle ...I ♥ this dog post today...by you do have some beautys here...WOW!! I love your built ins aren't these the ones you talked Mr. Note to paint...seems like I remember that from RMS...But hey girl I do suffer from Old Timers now you know ha ha!! Great post girl...May you have a wonderful day my friend...Hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

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  21. Holy cow, I had no clue you had so many of these cute dogs. And wow, the whole history on them is super interesting! I especially love the story about why many of them have red spots on their heads. How cool is that?

    Justiney :o )

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  22. Oh, Shelia, you are speaking my language --- only MY collection of Cavalier King Charles Spaniels wags their tails and actually eats and breathes!

    We've owned 4 of these wonderful REAL dogs, and only 3 of them in the Staffordshire variety! Plus we've done Cavalier Rescue for years, fostering and adopting out unwanted homeless spaniels.

    Your history of the Cavalier is absolutely right-on! In fact one of our dogs, our little Lily, looked very much like Dash, Queen Victoria's dog. I'll send you a picture, lol!

    What a delightful post for me to find! And if anyone ever wants to adopt a living, breathing Staffordshire Cavalier, they can just contact me!

    Lovely collection -- you have an amazing array of china dogs, I love them!
    Cass

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  23. What a fine dog house to be parked in! I love dogs, real or otherwise. No more loyal a creature than one's dog.
    Brenda

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  24. What a collection.

    What a nice mantle below...love the painting.

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  25. Fabulous collection, Shelia. I've always loved these little dogs, but don't own any!

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  26. Loved the history of these little dogs. When I was at Dromoland Castle in Ireland they had a room that had lots of these in glass cases. They were amazing to see. Guess the Irish were collectors too.
    Joyce

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  27. Shelia
    I love your dog collection. Those puppies are so lovely in real life and we got a whole story on them too...thank you for sharing...
    lovely collection
    Judi

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  28. Beautiful collection and I didn't know all those stories about the Staffordshire dogs!

    You have some amazing collections Shelia! And I love them all!

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  29. I'm on the floor laughing again!

    I love the doggies...OMGOSH! I thought I was looking at a picture of a museum! :) BEAUTIFUL!

    xoxoRebecca

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  30. How very cute! My best friend always gets King Charles Spaniels they are such sweet dogs. I love yours! :)

    All the best,
    Allison

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  31. What a pleasure to look at your wonderful dog collection! I also enjoyed the information and stories. Thanks for sharing.

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  32. Hi Shelia,
    You have such a sweet collection! I love how they all seem to have their own little personalities.
    ~Michelle

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  33. I can always count on you for a good story and informative at that! That is quite a collection you have. Thanks for the little lesson. I feel smarter!

    take care,
    Dawn

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  34. Oh, my goodness gracious, you ARE surrounded by dogness if ever I saw anyone surrounded by them!!
    They are all just the cutest things..enjoyed seeing your lovely collection so much..
    hugs, bj

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  35. Sheila,
    You are a great storyteller and such an interesting gal! I loved seeing the pretty collection! Hugs, Cindy

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  36. Wow - what an awesome collection!

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  37. Oh Sheila, I LOVE your staffy's. You have a wonderful collection. I love that featured them all and your stories are the perfect touch. You DO know your doggies girl. I learned a bunch today. Your display case is awesome.

    We are still traveling and won't be home until June 21 or 22nd. We are having a wonderful time. My visiting is slow but I am trying to keep up.

    Hugs to you and I will visit when I can.

    xoxo...Jeanne

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  38. hey...made it...(panting...out of breath...lol) I just did an entire huge and long post about your knock out rose issues....look for it on Thursday! Tomorrow is my bathroom post...and I linked to another blog..so I have to post it. THURSDAY is all about you!!!

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  39. Oh Shelia!! You are an endless wealth of knowledge!! I knew zero about the Staffys until reading your fine history on them just now!! I will always look at them with greater appreciation--especially the ones that look like Staffybunnies!!! Oh and I loved the little gigglers you brought home with you!!

    L, Dana

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  40. Wonderful collection. I loved the story about Dash.

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  41. What a collection!! So very sweet and every one with a story!
    I was researching the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel the other day (researching dogs for us) and read all of this. How fun!

    Hugs
    Heather:)

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  42. What a beautiful dog house! I so enjoyed seeing your collection, and I love the epitaph on Dash's grave, and the story about the queen going to bath him after the coronation! Great post! laurie

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  43. Oh my yes! I soooo agree with you...they are the happiest little fellas.....they live with YOU! And, what a grand "dog house" they have too.... :-)

    Big hugs,
    Spencer

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  44. Well, better late than never! How did I not see this earlier? Love you little doggies. Those faces would make any heart melt!
    Hugs, dear friend....Sarah

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  45. Sheila, I just found your staffordshire dog collections. I have four of the copies that I started collecting last year. I was seeing them in magazines and other places and then starting buying them in different places. You are right the real ones get really expensive. May get a real one some day.

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  46. Dogs that look deformed are often breeds that don’t have any more working lines and the show line breeders completely took over. Working lines in breeds are healthy and look similar to their ancestors. For example many show line German Shepherds are very different from working line and Czech German Shepherds that I think they should eventually be considered different breeds. If you want to preserve a breed and keep dogs looking like dogs, the working lines have to be preserved. Looking for large dog breeds for families Wondering what large dog breeds are good with kids or would be good for apartments Find out here A complete list of large dog breeds

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I'm so pleased you would come to see me and so please leave me a comment and I'll do my very best to respond back to you. Be a sweetie...Shelia :)