Dogs and propaganda

An email that Judy Gombita sent me today about  (a sort of urban tale adapted online for any local mall), there was a mention of a long-haired foreign dog – with a photograph of an Afghan hound.

I wondered whether this indicates “Afghan” is being censored as a doggie descriptor? 

I was aware that the German Shepherd Dog was renamed as in England after the First World War owing to anti-German sentiment – only being changed back in 1977.  Is the name Afghan similarly being avoided? 

A lot of dog breeds have geographic names – Chihuahua, Dalmation, Great Dane, even the so called, French Poodle… but how many are affected by a need for a public relations make-over?

The American Pit Bull has gained a bad reputation from owners who use the dog for fighting and to look tough.   Although its origins in the 1800s were actually in fighting, a rename to Staffordshire Terrier in the 1930s aimed to make Pit Bull dogs seem more benign.

The beautiful was used as a hunting dog in Afghanistan and apparently has several alternative names: Balkh Hound, Baluchi Hound, Barutzy Hound, Kabul Hound, and Tazi.

We used to own one of this dippy dogs (Tina, who was a real prima donna) and for me the breed is the epitome of the 1980s, when Afghan hounds were twice supreme champion at Crufts.

But is Afghan today a tainted term?  Or is it more likely that the people who captioned the photograph were ignorant of the breed?

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Heather Yaxley

Heather Yaxley is passionate about PR - teaching the CIPR qualifications, lecturing part-time at Bournemouth University and running the Motor Industry Public Affairs Association (MIPAA). I'm undertaking a PhD looking at Career Strategies in PR. I love sharing ideas and knowledge - connecting news and views by blogging on public relations and educational developments, especially relating to accelerated and active learning. I'm also a published author, qualified trainer and experienced consultant.

5 thoughts on “Dogs and propaganda”

  1. That’s an entertaining and not impossible supposition, that the word “Afghan” is being PC’d out of a dog breed’s name.

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