The World War II Booklet That Doomed Britain’s Pets

Can you kill your own pet? A hidden trauma of war on the home front…

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Several weeks ago we were paging through a wartime edition of a British pet magazine called, The Tail-Wagger. What caught our attention was a notice that read, “Happy memories of Iola, sweet faithful friend, given sleep September 4th 1939, to be saved suffering during the war. A short but happy life – 2 years, 12 weeks. Forgive us little pal.”

It seemed to sad. Why would a “sweet faithful friend” be “given sleep” to spare it from suffering during the war? Most of the questions were answered in another booklet we found in the lot called, AIR RAID PRECAUTIONS HANDBOOK NO.12 (1st Edition). AIR RAID PRECAUTIONS FOR ANIMALS.

The threat of war came upon Great Britain in the 1930s like the boiling black clouds of a violent summer thunderstorm. By the middle of the decade, Germany’s secret program of rearmament was already well underway – a program that…

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