Never mind Cameron, Clegg and Miliband - vote for our dogs say villagers in Fulmodestone, near Fakenham

Dogs in Fulmondestone are standing for election - The villages dogs walk the streets on the campaign

Dogs in Fulmondestone are standing for election - The villages dogs walk the streets on the campaign trail, from left, Alan Heath with Dora, Eddie Goodridge with Teal and Nick Barnes with Trilby. Picture: Matthew Usher. - Credit: Matthew Usher

Up to 15pc of voters thought Nick Clegg was a bit of a poodle in a poll a couple of years back.

Now every dog hopes to have its election day in a tiny village near Fakenham, where the lanes are lined with signs promoting canine candidates.

Party HQ is the home of artist Alan Heath and music teacher Stephen Miles, in leafy Fulmodestone.

Mr Heath, 67, said: 'There's a lot of dog owners here. You drive through villages and you see signs saying support this party, support that party, so I just thought it would be fun to support canines.'

After painting a sign featuring his 10-year-old cocker spaniel Dora, Mr Heath found he'd started a movement.

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'The neighbours said what about the chihuahuas, what about the labs,' he said.

Mr Heath returned to his studio. Soon more placards appeared.

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Mr Heath, who moved to Norfolk from his home in Tennesse, US, in 1973, said there were distinct differences between the two countries' mode of staging elections - not to mention the way they do politics.

'Over there it goes on and on, people get fed up with it,' he said. 'Here the campaigning is much more fast and furious.

'I used to listen to Prime Minister's Questions, but it's just like big boys hurling insults at each other, rather than trying to run the government.'

Manifesto-wise, Mr Heath said the dogs hoped to score a quick hit with bread and butter policies like more biscuits and walks on the beach.

But will they be barking up the right tree with the electorate on more serious isues, like the NHS?

'The NHS, this is a big thing,' said Mr Heath. 'We want an NHS for dogs. Vets bills - oh my goodness, wouldn't it be good to have an NHS for dogs. maybe for cats too.'

This time around, the village's dogs have not got around to actually nominating one of their number to stand. Back in Mr Heath's homeland, a dachshund from Oklahoma called Molly did stand as a presidential candidate in the opening stages of the 2008 election.

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