Yah Boo Shucks to the Demonic Dog

I'm not scared of dogs - one member of my family has about six black dogs (I can't count them all to be sure as  they keep moving around). Dogs which break over you like a black wave when he opens the door. They are all very well trained and soft mouthed really. One of them can pick up a fresh laid egg without leaving so much as a scratch on its shell....this is true......but I digress...

photo from Wiki
Black dogs and churches and East Anglia go together in a much more sinister way. The Black Shuck is a spectral dog, larger than most, with hollow glowing eyes the size of saucers; and to meet him is to court misfortune. If you even so much as hear him howling it is best to turn the other way quickly.

Although the Shuck has been seen in Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, the Fens and Essex I think Suffolk have the best claim to him. The good Reverend Fleming documented what happened during a terrible storm in 1577 when the Shuck manifested itself in Suffolk "A straunge, and terrible wunder wrought very late in the parish church of Bongay"

Strange and terrible indeed. Whether the Shuck is a demon or the Devil or a remnant of Odin's wild hunt, the creature is undoubtedly a killer. Not content with causing public disorder at Bungay he carried onto Blythburgh, taking the fury of an electrical storm with him. He burst into the church; burnt the North door with his red hot nails, and ran up and down the aisles disrupting the service. Before he left he killed two parishoners by breaking their necks swiftly backwards in his vice like jaws and finally caused the tower to topple. That's the sort of behaviour that'll get you remembered!

But why am I going on about the Shuck? Simple - he is a spectre, here one second and gone the next. A bit like the dog at Buxhall.

Buxhall is beautiful, it has lots of lovely distracting graffiti on its West tower pillars, all perfectly visible to the naked eye... and a dog that isn't.

Here is the door that the dog is on, can you see much? Look top left on the stone. I ran my light over it twice as there was an odd little graffito that I couldn't work out. Then I asked if I could be shut in and the lights turned off. It works wonders for showing up every scratch and mark.

Then I ran my light around the door frame again -  jumped out of my skin (I might have exclaimed a bit too!)

 See here - a dog appearing from nowhere like a ghost on the stone...
What makes him demonic? That forked tongue does it for me. Oh and he seems to be wearing a cape and a collar. Make of that what you will. Maybe fashionable dog wear isn't just a 21st c trend?