Hound Waves dog radio station created to warn about canine parasite

Dogs and their owners will get their own radio station for a day as part of an initiative by pharmaceutical company Bayer to raise awareness of a parasite that can be fatal to dogs.

Hound Waves: several celebrities and entertainers will be heard on the station
Hound Waves: several celebrities and entertainers will be heard on the station

Celebrities including Martine McCutcheon, Brian Sewell, Amanda Holden, Floella Benjamin and Huey Morgan will feature on the station, which will be on air during the Crufts dog show next Friday (7 March).

Programmes will include a documentary on pet rescue charity Blue Cross, hosted by McCutcheon, dog bedtime stories told by Sewell and an afternoon play written and performed by Benjamin.

Hound Waves Radio will only be available on FM for a period of 24 hours, which required a temporary licence from the broadcast regulator Ofcom. It can be heard in London and in the vicinity of the Crufts venue, the NEC Arena in Birmingham, on the frequency of 87.9FM.

However, its content will live on as podcasts hosted online at Lungworm.co.uk. The website is used by Bayer Animal Health for its Be Lungworm Aware messaging about the lungworm parasite, its risks to dogs and how to address it. Bayer makes a treatment for infected dogs called Advocate.

The news of the station's launch spearheads a national and regional publicity programme that will run across broadcast and print media and include a presence at Crufts, a social media campaign and a number of pre-launch vet focused webinars. There will also be advertising in print, TV and online media.

The campaign is being led by broadcast PR specialist Markettiers4dc, working with Bayer's in-house team, healthcare comms agency Pegasus and digital agency Zone.

Markettiers4dc managing director Helen Moore said: "The Hound Waves campaign is a great example of a pharmaceutical brand being truly brave with its communications approach. Though Bayer has delivered a significant number of successful and forward-thinking broadcast campaigns in the past, this project is set to reinvent traditional broadcast strategies".

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