Murphy is a well known and much loved animal within his local community in Manchester – where he stops traffic so people can take a photo with the gentle giant!
A huge Irish wolfhound from Manchester has just missed out on a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Rhys Davenport, from Cheadle Hulme, has been contacted by the organization after posting a picture of Murphy towering over his son Sion on his hind legs to greet him on social media.
Unfortunately, when the measuring equipment came out, Murphy just missed out on a place in the record books.
However, the gentle giant is still a very special animal both to his beloved family and to people living in the local community.
How tall is Murphy exactly?
Murphy caught the attention of Guinness World Records on Twitter after Rhys posted a message to another giant dog on the social media network called Diego.
Rhys, who works as a graphic designer and cleaner, says Murphy is about seven and a half feet tall when fully upright on his hind legs.
With a little cajoling and a few cookies, Rhys finally managed to measure it up to 38 and a little off the shoulder.
Sadly, it looks like that won’t be enough to secure her a spot in the record books, as the organization says she’s hanging onto a Great Dane who measured 41 inches at the shoulder for the record.
However, this hasn’t been too disappointing for his owners, especially since focusing too much on the size of larger dog breeds can have negative consequences for animals.
Rhys said, “We’re not into those kinds of records. Murphy is just one member of the family.
“The giant breeds have been bred too intensively. At four months old, Murphy’s radius grew 8cm from his ulna in two weeks and his leg bowed.
“He had seven operations and it cost us just over £23,000. We were insured but we had to prepay, there were loans and everything. In fact, that’s one of the reasons I posted the picture that day, we were celebrating the loan repayment!
“You also don’t want to exercise them too much because they can’t get too muscular.”
Rhys says Irish wolfhounds were originally bred to slaughter animals such as deer, but they weren’t as big as they are now.
When the breed was saved from near extinction, a crossbreeding program with other types of large dogs began, which caused the animals to increase in size.
A “gentle giant” very popular in his neighborhood
Rhys says it’s not just him and his family in the Cheadle Hulme area who are deeply committed to Murphy’s presence.
He said: “They are very gentle giants. They love people, especially children.
“I live quite close to a school my kids went to and there are a lot of young families here who grew up with him.
“They call him when they go to school. If there is a child who is unsure about dogs, the parents bring them to our house because they know that Murphy will be very nice to them.
“He sits on the doorstep and if a child blows on his nose, he gives him a kiss.
“You can have little toddlers crawling all over him and he just lays on the floor and leaves them.”
Rhys’ wife works at a school for severely disabled children and says Murphy will soon visit them for an afternoon so the youngsters can learn about dogs and enjoy petting and petting him.
He says he’s also gotten used to attracting attention whenever Murphy goes out for a walk.
He said: “Murphy probably gets his picture taken once or twice a week by people pulling up in their cars. People roll down their windows to see it.