Dogs at the football

One of the greatest accounts on twitter is @nonleaguedogs. The pure simplicity of pictures of dogs against a backdrop of grassroots football is irresistible. However, it’s not just modern social media that’s abuzz with interest in dogs at football games. There are many forgotten stories of pups at games and we present those to you here.

The beautifully presented images of the dog below are of Pompey the footballing dog who would entertain the crowds at half-time at Fratton Park during the early part of the 20th Century.

pompey dog sketch jan 9 1907
The Sketch, 9th Jan 1907

If in Portsmouth dogs were demoted to only appearing during the interval we can see in the Midlands things weren’t so simple. In the Midlands in the latter part of the 19th Century during a Birmingham Cup tie between Aston Villa and West Bromwich Albion a remarkable tale emerged of a dog entering the field of play…

Leicester Chronicle, March 10th 1888
Leicester Chronicle, March 10th 1888

While we may like to think that the link between dogs and sport is a steadfast one, it’s certainly not as well known as that between alcoholic beverages and football. This case from Glasgow (published in the Dundee Courier) demonstrates how dogs are often a man’s best friend.

Dundee Courier, 4th April 1899
Dundee Courier, 4th April 1899

As we’ve seen, dogs accompanying their owners to football or even escaping their owners and entering the field of play was certainly a common story at the start of the 20th Century. However, there’s one final remarkable tale of a dog who loved football so much he traveled to games solo.

Aberdeen Press & Journal, 14th Jan 1924
Aberdeen Press & Journal, 14th Jan 1924

As marvellous as these stories are, it’s hard not to think that they may have been embellished in some way. The tales are almost too good to be true. Even if these magnificent articles are not as truthful as they are presented, they’re certainly lovely to read.

All articles from the wonderful britishnewspaperarchive.

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