Regimental Mascots

Irish Guards 1985 to 2000

Cormac's place was taken by Melanter Connor of Sanctuary, bred by Stella Blackmore, by Killykeen Sauron of Sanctuary out of Melanter Eilean, born September 16th, 1983. Connor, like Pat before him, travelled overseas with the Battalion, going to Berlin.

Connor was called after Conchobar MacNessa who was the High King of Ulster around 33 AD and started the first known Scoti colony in Alba (as Scotland was then known).

Connor receiving Shamrock 
 The Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Colonel of the Irish Guards, with Captain G.J. Pidgeon,
Lance-Corporal Rutherford and Connor, the new Regimental Mascot, at the Guards' Depot
on St. Patrick's Day 1985

This photo appeared in Our Dogs Annual 1990 with the following caption:
Conchabar MacNessa known as Connor to his many friends, The Regimental Mascot of the Irish Guards,
is inspected before going on to parade. He featured in the TVS series, 'It's a Dog Life'.
Connor in March 1985 
 Connor on the same day, having been given the Shamrock
[front cover of The Guards Magazine, Spring 1985]
Connor in 1986 
 Lance Sergeant Rutherford with Connor standing in front of the statue of Field Marshal
Lord Alexander of Tunis in Wellington Barracks in 1986

[front cover of The Guards Magazine, Spring 1986]
 In the report on the Irish Guards in this issue of The Guards Magazine, it states:
"Last but not least, it is marvellous to see Connor our mascot with us in Chelsea and,
although it is early days yet, he is turning out to be an extremely fine wolfhound."
 Postcard, on the back of which it says: Irish Wolfhound,
Regimental Mascot of The Irish Guards (formed 1900)
takes pride of place when on Parade. He is looked
after by a drummer of The Foot Guard.
The postcard is by Pageantry Postcards 
Painting by D.N. Anderson 
 Painting by Donald N. Anderson, 1991
Trooping the Colour 
Kardorama postcard 
 Connor in Berlin

Connor went on to 1992 and was replaced by Malachy, bred by Dagmar Kenis, by Foinavon Narcos out of Oelmuehle Amely of Solstrand, born August 24th, 1990. He joined the regiment on its return from Berlin and his first parade was on St. Patrick's Day, 1991. He served with the regiment on their tour of duty in Northern Ireland.

 Postcard in the series Regimental Mascots of The British Army: Malachy - Mascot of the Irish Guards
Malachy with Drummer Coates 
 Malachy as he appeared on the front cover of The Guards Magazine,
Spring 1992, with his handler, Drummer Coates
 Malachy showing off his cape

Malachy on duty in the rain 
 Malachy on duty on what looks to be a wet day, St. Patrick's Day 1993
 Tour of Northern Ireland
 Malachy on the tour of duty in Northern Ireland
 For an article on Malachy from the Kennel Gazette, December 1994, click here

Sadly, in November 1994, Malachy died suddenly following routine dental treatment. In April, 1995 Ainsea Cuchulain was presented to the Irish Guards by the British Small Animal Veterinary Association at their annual congress. Cuchulain was bred by Jean Malley by Hibeck Hardy out of Ainsea Harvest Moon.

 Cuchulainn with handler
 Cuchulain with his handler at the BSAVA Congress
Cuchulain on front page 
 Cuchulain appears on the front cover of the
Irish Guards Journal, 1997
Cuchulainn showing off his combat coat 
 Cuchulain wearing a 'Combat 95' coat
 Cuchulainn in full dress coat
Cuchulain in his Full Dress coat with his handler.
Note that he has been presented with a Northern
Ireland medal; he also has a regimental number.
When the Regiment is in Great Coat Order the
mascot would also wear a grey cloth coat. 
 The Regiment (The Military Heritage Collection) magazine, Issue 52, December 2000 was on the Irish Guards and said of the Regimental Mascot:
The Irish Guards have the unique distinction of being the only regiment in the Household Division to have a Regimental Mascot.
The Irish wolfhound was the ancient hunting dog of the legendary Irish warriors led by Fionn MacDumhail, so it was appropriate that on 15th October 1902 the Irish Kennel Club [this is an error; it should read the Irish Wolfhound Club] should have presented a dog 'Rajah of Kidnal', rechristened 'Brian Boru', but known as Paddy with Regimental Number 1463.
The Irish Guards have had a succession of Irish wolfhound mascots since 1902, each named after an ancient Irish chieftain.
Malachy was the first mascot to go on an operational tour with the Battalion to Co. Fermanagh from October 1991 to May 1992.
Cuchulain, the eleventh mascot, was presented to the Regiment in January 1995. As with other mascots he spent his first six months at the home of the Regimental Adjutant being gradually introduced to Regimental life.
He was introduced to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother on St. Patrick's Day 1995 in Chelsea. He joined the Battalion as it deployed to Northern Ireland on an operational tour to East Tyrone. At the request of the Grand Duchess of Luxembourg, Cuchulain and his handler were presented to Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in the Major General's office at the Queen's Birthday Parade, 1996.
On 26th July 1961 the classification of the dog was changed from Regimental Pet to Regimental Mascot. This meant that he was entitled to the services of the RAVC as well as movement and quarantine at public expense, but not food.
The mascot has never been dressed up but there are certain occasions that the wearing of a cape is acceptable. The overriding influence is the weather and the animal is never allowed to be distressed by heat on parade.
In principle it is intended that the red linen cape should only be worn by the mascot on State or special occasions. It is worn when tunics are worn and the Drum Major is wearing State Dress. It may also be worn on special occasions as directed by the Adjutant of the 1st Battalion or the Regimental Adjutant.
When greatcoats are worn and the Drum Major wears State Dress the mascot wears an Athol Grey cape.
Cover of CD of Irish Guards Band 
 This CD of the Irish Guards Band was made in 1998 when the mascot was Cuchulain
The Music Critic 
"The Music Critic" Musician Hooper and friend.
Signed Henderson '95 
August 1999 in Munster 
 Cuchulain in Munster, Germany in August, 1999
 My grateful thanks to LSgt. E. J. Rooney for this photograph 
 St. Patricks Day, Munster
 Cuchulain leads the band on parade at the start of the
2000 St. Patrick's Day celebrations in Munster, Germany
 Cuchulain on the march
 Cuchulainn on the march on the same day
 My grateful thanks to LSgt. E. J. Rooney for this photograph 
presentation of Shamrock 2000 
 The Grand Duke of Luxembourg as Colonel of the Regiment
presents Cuchulain with his spray of Shamrock on
St. Patrick's Day, 2000
 St. Patrick's Day, 2000
A few minutes later in the presentation of the Shamrock 
My grateful thanks to LSgt. E. J. Rooney for this photograph 

Cuchulain served until 2000.

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Updated 11/4/2008