More pets abandoned since the start of the financial crisis

The number of animals being abandoned has soared by 65 per cent since 2007, when the global financial crisis hit.

Weeds grow on the grounds of the Walthamstow greyhound dog racing stadium, which was closed in 2008

Going to the dogs! Duncan Smith blasts Johnson over Walthamstow track decision

Iain Duncan Smith delivered a stinging rebuke to Boris Johnson’s Conservative leadership aspirations after the London Mayor approved a scheme to turn the Walthamstow dog track in east London into flats.

Buster, cavalier King Charles spaniel, six years old, the first dog Casteel photographed underwater

Underwater dogs: Man's best friend as never seen before

It gives serious dogs a big smile and makes silly dogs look… well, barking , frankly. Matthew Bell discovers what happened when the photographer Seth Casteel played a very wet game with a pack of man’s best friends.

Gilly Chisholm and Weimaraner, on Hampstead Heath

Wonderland: Walking with Dogs, BBC2 Monday
Getting on, BBC4, Wednesday
The Great British Bake Off, BBC2, Tuesday

Dog-owners reveal their pet loves and pained souls in a sad and beautiful documentary

Last night's viewing - Walking with Dogs: a Wonderland Special, BBC2; Paul O'Grady: for the Love of Dogs, ITV1

"My view is dogs are people too," said Marianne, at the beginning of Vanessa Engle's Wonderland film about the dog-walkers of Hampstead Heath. My view, in the interests of full disclosure, is that they're not. So I approached Walking with Dogs with a certain wariness.

Five-minute memoir: Elson Quick reminisces on a trip to Thailand

I'm hungry. The day clears its throat. A cockerel's dusty bluster, a furry rip of motorised scooter exhaust, and from some high weed-throttled loudspeaker, the nasal megaphone of traditional song, impossibly nostalgic for a life I don't know.

Scotland striker Jordan Rhodes

Huddersfield striker Jordan Rhodes set to complete big money transfer to Blackburn

Jordan Rhodes is set to complete a move from Huddersfield to Blackburn today that will break the record transfer fee received by Town.

Martin Allen has thought better of his old fire-breathing style of management – and Gillingham are firing

Allen turns from a raging Mad Dog into a canny old pussycat

Fire-breathing management style has gone – and it works at Gillingham, says Glenn Moore

Five-Minute Memoir: Jonathan Trigell recalls a childhood attack on his dad's beloved beans

When I was a boy, I loved books and I hated beans. My dad adored beans. Especially his beans: runners, grown on bamboo poles, that should have made excellent wigwam structures, but instead would provide endless months of hairy, stringy, mottled, tooth-clogging torture; or so it seemed to me.

Man spared jail over sex with dog

A father of three who had sex with his ex-wife's bull mastiff dog was spared a prison sentence today.

Main jailed after neglected dog was forced to survive by eating other pet's remains

A man has been jailed after leaving two Jack Russell dogs to fend for themselves for more than a month, resulting in one starving to death and the other surviving by eating its remains, the RSPCA said.

Royalty dogs might have an exceptional lifestyle, but they can be a bit aggressive after all

Beware of the royally spoilt dogs

Who's a naughty boy, then? The Queen's corgis stand accused of attacking Max, a Norfolk terrier belonging to her granddaughter Princess Beatrice, almost tearing the 11-year-old pooch's ear off.

Dangerous dog owners to face tougher penalties

Owners of dangerous dogs which attack people in public will face stiffer penalties from today, including up to 18 months in prison.

Family appeal for information on missing climber Felix Marr

The family of a British man who has been missing for almost a week after disappearing on his way down a mountain overlooking Lake Garda in Italy have appealed for witnesses to come forward with any clues to his whereabouts.

Five Questions About: Pet insurance

Why do I need to insure my pet?

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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition