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'Baggage' warning over handbag dogs

Monday October 1st 2012

Tiny handbag dogs may look cute, but these pampered pets can be difficult to live with.

That's according to staff at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, who have seen a 40% increase in the number of small dogs arriving this year.

Many of these dogs display serious behavioural problems because they have been mollycoddled by their owners, who treat them as accessories.

The majority of small dogs arriving at Battersea are Yorkshire terriers. More than 90 have arrived at the home so far this year, compared with 54 by the same time last year.

There has also been a similar rise in the number of Chihuahuas arriving at the centre, leading Battersea to issue a warning about these 'handbag dogs with baggage'.

The animals at Battersea have recently been starring in Paul O'Grady's new ITV1 series, For The Love Of Dogs.

In next week's episode, the presenter meets Bobby, a spoilt Chihuahua who has developed a possessive attitude towards his owner. Bobby is seen snapping and barking at anyone who comes near.

Battersea's head of canine welfare training, Ali Taylor, said: "They may be small but they are still dogs, and sadly people treat them like babies or accessories without letting them behave as dogs should."

Copyright Press Association 2012

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