Friday, March 13, 2009

Rufus The London Underground Commuter

A canine commuter has become a minor celebrity on the London Underground thanks to his giant frame (He's a whopping 55kgs!).

Rufus the Pyrenean mountain dog travels on the capital's transport network with his owner Michael Stavrides and has won the hearts of fellow commuters. Stavrides, 50, takes the tube journey from Pinner to Baker Street daily with his oversized pal and says that the reaction to the five-year-old dog has been overwhelmingly positive.

Canine commuter: Rufus the Pyrenean mountain dog on the tube with his owner Michael Stavrides

'It's amazing the reaction of people as I take Rufus on the train.

'Although he does tend to slump across the carriage floor people absolutely love him,' says Michael, who owns the Fine Art Gallery in Marylebone.

'People actually tell me they get on the train that isn't their train just to go to the next stop with him.

'They tell me it makes their day, particularly as we're going through a credit crunch.'

Michael also says famous fans including Matt Lucas, Barbara Windsor and Dale Winton have all stopped to pat Rufus.

'I've even had people park their cars just to get out to say hello and take a picture with him.'

But some grumpy travellers aren't so happy to share carriage space with the friendly pooch.

A lively debate started in a London paper when someone calling themselves NOTDOGLOVER texted in to ask if anyone had seen "pony-like" Rufus and stated that they objected to his poochy presence on the rush hour commute.


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