and animals have played a big part in Peter’s life, although he
didn’t have a dog until his parents inherited one when they took
over a pub in Derbyshire, when Peter was 11 years old. This was a
lovely Black Cocker Spaniel called Rusty.
actor’s life was generally not ideal
for the keeping of pets, so it wasn’t until Peter took over the
ownership of Petra, the first Blue Peter dog, that he
began to keep a pet again. Dogs have been his passion ever since. When
he met his wife, Kathryn Evans,
one small Pekingese called
Georgie who was joined by both Billie
(also Pekes). After Georgie died the Purves’s
started to keep Newfoundlands,
beginning with Mishka,
followed by Gulliver and
latterly Kent. Jamie, another
Peke, also followed Mishka and Hollie and Tillie.
From L Woody, Teddy, Dottie and Hattie
The current dogs in the household are two young Pekingese, Bea (3), who is jet black, and Lillie(2) who is a very light cream (almost white.) And there are four Standard Wire-haired Dachshunds – Hattie (mum), Woody (Dad), and two of their puppies, Dottie and Teddy.
Peter and Kate bred the litter of seven puppies in October 2007, kept
two, and found lovely homes for the other five. They remain in touch
with the other owners.
Peter and Woody Dec 2013
Woody with his son, Teddy
Bea and Lillie
On the Beach, March 2014
Crufts dog show is now back on TV with Channel 4 and More 4, and you can find out about this year’s show on the Current Activities page, and catch up with what happened at the NEC on youtube.com/crufts and explore the videos on stream. There are several features presented by Peter, and many more on which he commentated at the 2014 and 2013 shows.
been involved in the presentation and narration/commentary of
a number of other dog programmes including 65 editions of Pets Go Public for 5, Breed All About It
for Discovery Channel, and Superdogs
for the BBC. He recently became a judge on the Dog-training reality
programme for both the BBC and CBBC
called The Underdog Show.
Peter with Annie Clayton (L) and Kay Lawrence - Judges on the Underdog Show
numerous other dog events, several for the Guide Dogs For the
Blind Association; All About Dogs at Brentwood, several for Notcutts
Garden Centres, also called All About Dogs; The Cold Wet Nose Show, The
Wag and Bone show, Discover Dogs and many, many others.
editor of the monthly dog magazine, Peter Purves’ Mad About Dogs;
and is Vice Patron of Dogs for the Disabled, and the Bella Moss
Foundation, and is President of the Canine Supporters’ Charity
and The Rugby Animal Trust.
were, of course, also a feature of Blue
Peter as Peter recalls.
Peter and Petra
"Petra was certainly the most
famous of the Blue Peter dogs, but was a very nervous dog. She was
owned by the BBC, but producer Biddy Baxter suggested that I looked
after her at home so that she would feel she was with a friend when she
came to the studio. It was a good idea and to a degree worked. she
wasn't the best natured dog in the world and hated other dogs, but she
became my dog and lived with me and my family until she died. I was
very fond of her, and I think she was of me."
Peter and that Elephant
"This is one of those
television that everyone remembers - a real classic.
when Lulu, the baby
elephant from Chessington Zoo, came on the show and caused chaos. Lulu
did the lot! She drank and she peed, poohed and generally misbehaved -
dragging her poor gamekeeper through the mess. Val gamely struggled to
keep us all on the script, but john and I could not stop laughing. It
was really Biddy Baxter's fault. She asked the keeper to do without the
stick he used to keep Lulu under control. Without it Lulu did exactly
what she wanted. Great fun - and you couldn't have written it."
have been approached by a group called Dog Theft Action which has
been set up in the hope that there can be a national register,
co-ordinated and operated by all police forces and dog rescue centres,
to ensure that there is a better chance of re-uniting lost dogs
with their owners than there is at the moment. I, and Nick Mays of Our
Dogs, are acting as advisors to the group, and you can find out more
about them and their aims on the following sites.