A golden retriever was left with only a fraction of his fur on show after he wallowed in some mud like a happy hippo.
Murphy was on a walk in Blackwood Forest, Hampshire, with his owner, Gill Smith, when she found him lying in a murky pit.
It’s a common trait of golden retrievers that they have a ‘muck radar’, but Gill, 50, from Overton, let Murphy have his moment of fun.
The 16-month-old pup’s favourite way to cool off on a warm day is to drench himself in mud, and this puddle saw three quarters of his lovely coat turn brown.
He had drenched two thirds of his body in the mud
Gill said: “From about six months old he was rolling around in puddles. He still hasn’t completely rolled, that joy is yet to come.
“But once he’s found it and he’s in, then it’s too late, but my view is let him enjoy it, as he clearly does.
“He can run miles, past many puddles and potential pools and then he finds ‘the one’ and launches himself in – he has a few favourite local ones.”
Murphy decided to lie down in what looked like a little stream of muddy water. That way he was able to twist while also resting his head above water.
Gill said: “I think I’m safe to say that most owners find their goldies are a hippo hybrid. Goldies have some kind of muck radar.
“He was running down a track and suddenly turned right through the bushes – and that’s where I found him, absolutely loving it.”
Murphy joined the family after they lost their chocolate Labrador.
That desire to have a companion and friend on four legs was back and Gill, who is co director of her company ‘Editorial Office’, managed to convince her business partner and best friend into having Murphy’s sibling, named Beanbag.
Now they go on muddy walks together and frolic in fields looking for their next dive.
Gill said: “They are both loopy and funny, cuddly and sweet. We’d not be without them.”
You’d think the clean-up process would be a hard job but Murphy quite enjoys getting hosed down.
But he thinks it’s a game as Gill has to chase him around to get him clean.
This week our sister site TeamDogs is hosting its first ever Hero Dogs Week, supported by Everypaw Pet Insurance.
Aiming to shine a light on the UK’s incredible furry friends, this week-long celebration will spotlight the everyday heroes who’ve gone above and beyond to help their humans – but we need your help finding them.
So, whether your pup is an emotional support animal who supports your mental health on a daily basis, therapy dog who brings joy to hospital patients, or just a bundle of love and fluff who gets the whole family grinning on rainy days, send in your photos and stories so we can share the love.
To enter your hero dog, simply post your dog’s photo and story on the TeamDogs Pics of dogs page.
She said: “If it’s wet and foul outside or he’s found a smelly thing to play in then he knows about it – it’s the slow walk to the shower to get the full shampoo and set treatment.
“He also likes following the lawn mower and face planting in the newly cut grass which just results in Kermit the Dog.”