Comedian Eddie Izzard posed the question 'why did Mr Dog change its name?' in recent years. Well, while the scenario he painted of a late night meeting at Mr Dog HQ with bonkers late night thought processes running rampant was quite amusing, the real reason was simply to bring it into line with its European brand name.
Anyway, for our screen caps we've picked some lovely pics from an early Mr Dog ad - from 1982 - and two later ads from 1985 and 1987.
Aw, cute, eh?
A new decade on the way and a new canine treat!
Mr Dog was famous. Even if you didn't own a dog, you couldn't fail to be aware of the ads.
For myself and certain people I knew Mr Dog also achieved a certain sinister significance as the 1980s progressed.
I recall a friend's mother having a nervous breakdown in the mid-1980s. She was admitted to a psychiatric hospital, where she briefly believed that Mr Dog was spying on her and listening to every word she said.
My mate was visiting her at the hospital. Sitting in the day-room, he noticed she seemed a bit brighter, was talking far more logically, and he was feeling very relieved. They were chatting away ten-to-the-dozen, when suddenly she leaned forward:
'Ssh! He'll hear you!'
'Who'll hear me, Mum?' asked my mate.
'Mr Dog!' said mate's Mum.
Spied on by dog food? Or was there more to it? Just who was Mr Dog? I was twenty years old, with an over-active imagination, and although I appreciated the gravity of my friend's Mum's illness, on the quiet my thoughts conjured up visions of a sinister cigar smoking poodle, surrounded by yappy henchdogs. My fantasy poodle was the mutt who might be behind the Mr Dog empire, Mr Dog himself in fact, a mutt of immense power.
Don't mess with Mr Dog...
My friend's Mum made a full recovery and could only say afterwards that the Mr Dog delusion came about simply because she'd seen too many of the ads.
Advertising is a mighty powerful tool - sometimes with very unforeseen results...