Toto's warning for dogs - stay away from those cliff edges...and snakes

Cliffs east of the river mouth this week. Ref shs 06-16SH 4002. Picture: Simon Horn

Cliffs east of the river mouth this week. Ref shs 06-16SH 4002. Picture: Simon Horn - Credit: Archant

Toto, the infamous pooch of Sidmouth, gives a dog's-eye-view of the world.

Toto during his trip on the waves at Exmouth

Toto during his trip on the waves at Exmouth - Credit: Toto

Mutt of the month – Big big 'woof' goes out to Patron the Jack Russell, who’s working hard sniffing out unexploded bombs in Ukraine. Heroyam Slava!, Patron.

Matter of the month - Dogs on cliffs. An unlucky chap fell to his demise from a Cornish clifftop a few days ago, which prompts me to issue a safety message. Dogs of Sidmouth, pay attention. 

Now, I like a bonkers charge about as much as the next deranged canine, but when it comes to those cliffs, keep away from the edge.

And pop those leads on (so that your owners stay safe too). I hope that’s understood.

And while I’m talking safety, snakes=bad news.

There’ve been reports recently of poor pups minding their own business (kind of) and getting a snake’s fangs embedded in their nose.

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One of the latest was sausage dog Nyla, stomping around in Cornwall.

An adder decided she needed a good chomping, which made Nyla’s face swell up so much she couldn’t breathe properly.

Luckily, the plucky pooch got to the vet in time and made a full recovery. Let’s all learn from Nyla’s story.

One of my human fools came out with some baloney about snakes not being aggressive and just trying to defend themselves against massive bloodthirsty invaders with waggy tales.

Don’t listen to him – snakes are evil and they’re coming for you. So, do the right thing. If you see one, leg it.

If it helps, recite this little rhyme with me to remind you: ‘You can’t get badder than a mad bad adder.’ There’s a second bit that goes ‘He’s a snake in the grass, who’ll bite your ar-‘ but er… I’m not sure how that bit ends.

An adder came up to me once, counting on trouble.

I said ‘you’re a positive menace, in addition to which you’re nothing but a big zero’. He asked if I thought he had any plus points at all. ‘Adder’ I answered ‘in total, you amount to a petty sum. You do the maths’. He took that away. Result.

Merchant of the month – Snack attack time, courtesy of The Clocktower.

I heard on the grapevine there’s a new member of the We Love Dogs Café Society (no, there’s no such organisation. But there should be. Email me at if you’d join one if there were one. What would members get? I don’t know – I’m just a small Jackapoo with little experience of running membership-based social conglomerations, but I guess maybe my shop humans could supply treats to the café to give to poochy patrons, in return for a bit of publicity? Something along those lines? Yes? No? Don’t care – get on with the column? Alright, alright. Keep your fur on).

New owners have come on board and there’s jumping for joy and woofing for, well, the fun of it, because dogs are allowed in.

Not just outside – inside too. Is it my cup of tea? I should cocoa. 

For a treat it can’t be beat and for elevenses it’s 'heavenses'. I can’t 'gat-eauver' their corking cake and their cream teas are always scone in the blink of an eye.

I always pay my way mind – nothing worse than a sponge (unless it’s got jam and cream in it) so I 'doughnut' beg. Is that all very 'éclair'?

So, next time you want a slice of super-dooper-ness, go to the café that’s at the top of the pie chart.

It takes the biscuit. And it has all the tasty items salad could want. Or a lass, come to that. It’s 'tartally' fantastic and takes a lot of topping.

This cafe lark’s not without its risks though - I got in trouble with the police once for making a mess when I dipped my biscuit in my tea. 'Dunk and disorderly', apparently.

Toto out.