Mark’s a champion after penning poem about pet dog

An Oxford man has won a national poetry competition for his sentimental about his pet dog Missie.

Mark Whittaker, from Southfield Park, penned his poem as part of a Valentine’s Day contest staged by dog grooming product company Butch and Bess, and fought off competition from over 500 other entries.

Missie, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier – Jack Russell cross-breed, was bought by Mark as a puppy four years ago, and will now enjoy the first place prize of natural dog shampoos, grooming sprays and perfumes.

“I couldn’t believe the news when my poem was selected as the winner, it was completely unexpected,” said Mark.

“Writing my poem was actually pretty easy, I just wrote my genuine feelings about Missie down in words, which I think is why it works so well.

“Life just wouldn’t be the same without her. She’s my best friend and is always there come rain or shine.”

Jo Amit, co-founder of Butch and Bess, said: “Mark’s poem was outstanding and really resonated with the dog lovers we know.

“Just like us, people have been impressed with the way Mark has captured his connection to Missie in each and every line. Our congratulations go out to him.”