DogCast Radio
Home Episodes Articles Blog Breed profiles Book reviews Photos Contact

Is your dog a little 'Ruffs' around the edges?

Ruffs - our alternative online dog show - is back for 2016, and we’re calling for entries from you!
Friday 12 February marks the launch of RSPCA Ruffs 2016 - our alternative online dog show. And we’re calling on the UK public to enter their dogs!

To challenge the traditional beauty pageant style dog shows, which judge dogs primarily on looks, ‘Ruffs’ celebrates our canine friends for the right reasons - their welfare and happiness.

Whether they're pedigrees, crossbreeds, rescues or otherwise, we’re searching for pooches who are perfect on the inside, but might not be ‘show ready’ on the outside. And we’re also looking for clever canines who have overcome adversity and are now happy hounds.

Categories for 2016
The three categories to enter in this year’s competition are:

● Best Transformation - we want to see before and after pictures of your rescued pooches, examples of the most heartwarming transformations which show people that ‘rescued’ really is the best ‘breed’!
● Perfectly Imperfect - ‘wonky’ dogs who will never be perfect according to a set of arbitrary standards, but are perfect in your eyes.
● Happiest Hound - pictures of dogs at their happiest - with perhaps their smiliest or most contented face.

Our campaigner, Ari Winfield, said: “2016 marks the third year running for our Ruffs competition. We have been overwhelmed so far at the how the public have responded in previous years - with hundreds of thousands of people voting for the dogs they’d like to see recognised for who they are, rather than what they look like.
“Our finalists would never be ‘perfect’ according to breed standards used in shows like Crufts, but they do represent the true spirit of the contest which celebrates dogs for health, welfare and happiness - which should always be put before how a dog looks.”
How to enter your dog into Ruffs 2016
To enter your dog into Ruffs 2016, simply email your photos to with a paragraph (no more than 500 words) about your dog and what categories you’re entering him/her/them in (you can enter them in more than one category!). The deadline for entries is February 28, 2016.

Last year’s winners
Check out last year’s winners in 2016’s three categories: Happiest Hound, Best Transformation, and Perfectly Imperfect...
‘Happiest Hound’
Have you ever seen a dog smile quite like Bear’s?

Despite his happy face and love of humans, Bear had already had two other homes in his short life after he was handed into rescue for being ‘too affectionate’.

While Bear’s past is unknown, he has several scars on his head believed to be attained as a young pup.

Bear’s new family say: “When he smiles he has genuine dimples which we managed to get a fab photo of. He’s so fun and he is crazy in love with his human beasts! We adore him, and he probably loves you very much!”

‘Best Transformation’

Beauty was used as a breeding dog and was found in an appalling state. She had no muscle and was extremely thin and it is believed she’d lived her whole life in a tiny confined space, producing litter after litter of puppies.

Beauty needed 12 teeth removed and had an untreated ear infection which took nine months to finally clear.

After so many years of abuse, Beauty was lucky enough to be adopted by a kind family who turned her life around.
Her new owner, Margaret, says: “Beauty was quite introverted when she came home but we have another rescue dog, Jade, and they got on straightaway.

“Jade, being that much older than Beauty, helped to show her 'the ropes' and the things doggies like to do.

“Beauty does not have a bad bone in her body. She loves everyone, is great with all dogs and is Beauty by name as she is by nature.”

‘Perfectly Imperfect’

Scout didn’t have the best start in life.

Scout is almost completely blind and he was found straying on the streets of County Durham when he was just a puppy, and was taken to a local stray pound.

Once at the pound it was clear that all was not well with this little puppy. Scout was malnourished, had kennel cough, and was also suffering from mange.

Thankfully, he was rescued and placed into the care of East Midlands Dog Rescue.

Tracey, Scout’s owner, says: “Scout is loved by all he meets and, although to some, may be seen as less than perfect, to us he is every inch the perfect dog.”


274 - Crufts 2024 and can dog friendly be neurodivergent friendly?

In this episode Julie and Jenny go to Crufts 2024 and Michelle Foulia explores whether dog friendly can be neurodivergent friendly too. Plus the problems the French Bulldog faces, and how our dogs are good for our neurobiology!

189 - The Dog Healers and War Dogs Remembered

In this episode you can hear Mark Winik talk about his debut novel, The Dog Healers, and listen to Julia Robertson explain why she founded the charity War Dogs remembered. Plus there's the DogCast Radio News, and what Mischief the German Spitz puppy has been up to.

188 - Service Dogs UK and Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home

In this episode you can hear about Service Dogs UK, a fantastic charity which trains assistance dogs to support veterans of any service - military personnel, police, firefighters, paramedics and the coastguard - who develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder due to their job. Also, listen to Dr Jody A Dean, a clinical psychologist talk about how her book, Roxie the Doxie finds her Forever Home, is helping children understand and talk about adoption and other family issues. Plus the DogCast Radio News and some thoughts on the alpha dog myth.

187 - Muffins Halo and Chorley Fun Dog Show

In this episode you can hear about Muffin's Halo for Blind Dogs, and what motivates people to enter their dog in a fun dog show. In the DogCast Radio News, listen to stories about the latest dog related research. Plus there's a new member of the DogCast Radio team!

186 - Maxwell Muir on wolves

In this episode you can hear trainer, behaviourist, writer, broadcaster and wolf expert Maxwell Muir talk about what wolves mean to him personally, their plight in a modern world, and his hopes for their future. Plus we have the DogCast Radio News.