Prepare to be chilled to the bone by tales of the mysterious black dogs of Britain that have terrified people for centuries...

The Dog of Darkness

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A spectral dog, known as the Gwyllgi (Dog of Darkness), is said to haunt the town of Laugharne in Carmarthenshire. It appears with flaming red eyes, and runs from Laugharne Castle to the town centre.

 

The Lean dog of Tring

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iStockphoto

In Hertfordshire a fierce looking hound haunts the middle of a road where a gibbet (an instrument of execution) once stood. Locals have named it the Lean Dog and it is supposedly the spirit of a chimney sweep executed for murder. When approached, the spectral mutt slowly sinks into the ground…

 

Padfoot of Yorkshire

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iStockphoto

In Wakefield, Leeds and some areas of Bradford the black dog is known as Padfoot. The soft padding of feet is first heard before the clanking of chains. It pads softly behind you and if you look back you’d see a shadowy, half-real creature in the hedgerow. Enough to frighten some to death in an instant.

 

The black dog of Newgate prison

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iStockphoto

A black dog has haunted Newgate Prison in London for well over 400 years. Legend has it that in 1596 a scholar was sent to the prison for witchcraft. Before he could stand trial, he was killed and eaten by starving prisoners. The dog appeared soon after causing the terrified men to kill the guards and escape. Unfortunately the beast haunted them wherever they fled to till their dying day…

 

The Black Shuck

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iStockphoto

In Norfolk, Suffolk and northern parts of Essex, the malevolent black shuck has been a portent of illness or death to people or family members. In 1577 a tale tells of an attack on the church in Bungay where 2 people were killed, followed by an incident in the nearby village of Blythburgh where the church was left with claw marks on its door which remain today!

 

The Barguast of York

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iStockphoto

This ghostly canine roams the snickelways and side roads of York, preying on the unwary passerby. The dog has also been seen near Cliffords Tower (unsurprising due to its blood soaked history!) and anyone who glimpses the monstrous beast, beware! It’s a warning of impending doom…

 

The Gurt dog of Somerset

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iStockphoto

Bit of a change for this one, it’s a nice ghostly hound! It’s said that mothers would let their children play on the Quantock Hills because the Gurt dog would protect them. It also accompanied lone travellers over the hills acting as a guide and protector…

 

Here’s a video about the mysterious black dogs of Britain…

 

Do you know of any spooky shaggy dog stories?