Letter: Byron's 'bulldog'

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The Independent Online
Sir: Anthony Thornton ("A softie, and no bull: Labour's choice wins a pat", 19 April), refers to Lord Byron's endorsement of the bulldog and quotes the poet's epitaph to his pet dog Boatswain. Mr Thornton has got the right quote, but the wrong dog. Boatswain was a Newfoundland dog.

My reference book describes this breed as "originally brought from the country of which they bear the name, where their great strength and docility render them extremely useful to the settlers". In contrast, "the Bull- Dog always makes his attack without barking; it is very dangerous to approach him alone, without the greatest precaution".

Who made the right choice, Lord Byron or New Labour?