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Haverfordwest – city of dogs

January 17, 2017

My TAYLOR family arrived in Australia in 1841, from the city of Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, Wales. Haverfordwest is in South Wales and is a very old traditional market town.

As a dog lover, I was very interested to read the following newspaper article

from: The World’s News, Sydney, NSW, Saturday 22nd September, 1906, page 17

“A Population of Dogs.


Probably the doggiest town in Great Britain is Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire. It is an old world town, and is absolutely dependent upon agriculture and the breeding of dogs for its income.There are many men in the town who live wholly, and make a good living, by breeding, buying and selling dogs.

Although the population is only 6000, yet 6000 dog licenses are issued annually, and  there are also a large number of exemptions.

Almost daily there are more dogs than people in the public streets, though valuable animals are never allowed to run loose

Tramps and itinerant hawkers do not find Haverfordwest attractive, and unknown postmen often complain of torn clothes and bites, and occasionally letters are delivered in a very erratic fashion.

Rural postmen invariably carry stout cudgels, cyclists and motorists must slow down or risk broken necks, and compensation claims which would spell bankruptcy are continual.

Dustmen find brushes always necessary, for overturned and scattered dustbins and dog fights in the public streets are common occurrences.

Haverfordwest dog breeders are known for their working terriers, show terriers, pointers setters, and spaniels, which are bred, reared, and traded daily for big sums through the fanciers’ journals, and go everywhere.

One fancier’s kennel sold recently by auction, realised £200, but £250 is not an extravagant price for  a single dog, while £60, £70, and £80 are almost common. The quaint old town, with its mixed Welsh, English, and Flemish population, is almost the hub of the dogs’ universe”


Could this be where my love of dogs comes from? I would very much like to think so.



From → Wales

  1. I certainly pity the postmen!

  2. Rae Alexander permalink

    My Rees family came from Haverford West in the late 1840’s. The family has always loved dogs and most of us have one or two. Now I know! Another bit for the family story. Thanks for sharing.

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