So sad to hear of the death of the old curmudgeon Dr Hugh Wirth AM. Dr Wirth has died of Parkinson's Disease at the age of 78.
On ABC talkback radio, he could be very forthright and critical, even to the host of the programme when she queried him about a cat problem she was having. He was on air for over two decades as a vet giving on air advice. In 1997 he was Victorian of the Year.
Hugh never married and a partner has never been mentioned, and for a few years he was a judge at Dulcie Du Jour's dog show competition at Melbourne's gay and lesbian Midsumma Carnival. Make of that what you will. I don't really make much of it.
His real achievements have been the improvement of animal welfare, from stopping dog tail docking, to the stopping of export of horses for slaughter in Japan. I personally remember he was against shock collars that were used on dogs to stop 'inappropriate' barking.
He was president of the RSPCA, Royal Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Victoria) for over forty years and for a time president of the world wide body, World Animal Protection.
Vale Dr Wirth. You did well with your time on earth, by reducing cruelty to animals, by your arguing for the practical welfare for farm animals and least of all, the love of your pets.