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Pub Dog: Scapa and Jura

PUBLISHED: 16:16 28 August 2015 | UPDATED: 16:16 28 August 2015

Scapa and Jura at The Bathurst Arms, North Cerney

Scapa and Jura at The Bathurst Arms, North Cerney

Candia McKormack

Best friends Scapa and Jura may be named after Scottish malt whiskies, but their hearts belong solely to Cotswold pork scratchings

The Bathurst Arms, North CerneyThe Bathurst Arms, North Cerney

My name’s Scapa and, like my friend here, Jura, I’m named after a malt whisky. It’s something of a tradition for dad, Graeme, and mum, Anita, to name their dogs after quality malt whiskies – mum’s previous Vizsla was called Oban, while dad called the retriever who came before me Talisker.

Jura and I get along famously. We’re rarely apart and will often be seen following each other around The Bathurst Arms, both inside and out. Every morning we will have a little tussle to reassert who’s in charge, but it’s all very good natured and invariably I come out on top, so all’s good.

Caitlin – Graeme and Anita’s daughter – looks after us mostly. She’s brilliant, and seems to instinctively know what we want and how to get the best out of us… which sometimes involves the odd quality pork scratching from our local supplier. Nothing, but nothing, beats them.

We’ve only been at The Bathurst Arms around eight months; Graeme and Anita moved to Chedworth 15 years ago, via London and Yorkshire. It’s a real locals’ local, where you’ll find the gentry rubbing shoulders with trades people and gamekeepers. The aptly-named ‘6pm Club’ is where everyone gets together after a long day to unwind, have a drink and put the world to rights… and often the dogs outnumber the humans.

Yep, you certainly get a really rich pageant of people and dogs here… it’s a lovely place.

Slàinte mhath!

Favourite food:

Dad says there’s carnage if we’re let loose near food, but I think he’s being a little unfair. Yes, we both have pretty good appetites and enjoy our food, but we’re not scroungers and, besides, he has us on a strict diet of dried food. *sigh*

Favourite pub snack:

I don’t want to get Caitlin into trouble, but sometimes she allows the odd salt ‘n’ vinegar crisp to come our way. Oh, and Nibbler pork scratchings from Fossecross… now, they really are the dog’s wotsits!

Favourite customer:

Oh, that’s an easy one for me; I love our octogenarian regular Keith who’s been coming here for about 60 years. He’s a walking history of the pub and us dogs love him so much we follow him around. He’s a great chap.

Walk of choice:

We like to take a walk up through the village, turn left and head up to the hills – it’s fantastic up there. When there are no animals around, we’re allowed off our leads to bomb around the fields.

Favourite spot at bar:

Everyone congregates around the fire during the colder days and evenings – that’s where you’ll find all the dogs and humans – and, as most of us have grown up together, we all get on pretty well.

Favourite toy/collar, etc:

Jura will carry anything and everything around in his mouth and particularly enjoys playing tugging games. It’s in my genetic makeup to retrieve, so I’ll enjoy a good ball game or helping out with the odd found game bird.

Dislikes/pet hates:

We hate being told off – the sound of raised voices – but who doesn’t… and it happens on an all-too regular basis, unfortunately! Both Jura and myself are also unnerved by bubbles and balloons.

Dog’s danglies (top ale/cider):

• Hooky, by Hook Norton Brewery

• Ramsbury ale (Wilts)

• Elmers Beer, by The Flying Monk Brewery

Hair of the dog (hangover cure):

The Bathurst Arms’ very special recipe Bloody Mary (with a nod to Antony Worrall Thompson).

Read about more of our pub dogs here:

Fred and Big Ron



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