It was January of 1966 and the Football World Cup was to happen in the Home of Football – England that year in July. The English FA had been taking great measures to make it one of the most spectacular tournaments ever to have happened. To this end, they had brought in the World Cup trophy, a magnificent solid-gold trophy called the Jules Rimet Cup to the country. The World Cup trophy was exhibited to the English public in several cities.
During one such exhibition in March, when the security guards were away for a while, the trophy got stolen. Everyone was horrified and the English FA were in a big fix. They had just 3 months to recover the trophy or make a new one to be presented to the tournament’s winners in July. While taking every measure to recover the old trophy, they also secretly commissioned a replica in case the original couldn’t be found in time. Thus, the search for the missing World Cup began.
A few days after the theft, the President of the English FA received a ransom call and was asked to bring a suitcase full of cash to a particular location in London. The FA secretly informed the Police and when the suitcase was being handed over, the Police surprised and arrested the man. He was one of the thieves all right, but he did not have the World Cup. It was with his accomplice, who, upon hearing the news of his friend’s arrest dropped off the trophy somewhere in London and disappeared. The trophy remained as lost as ever.
Pickles was a dog (invisible dog fence) owned by a London resident. One day in 1966, when he was being taken for a walk by his owner, Pickles went into his neighbor’s yard and brought back a parcel wrapped in newspapers. The owner recognized it as the missing World Cup trophy and promptly took it to the authorities. Pickles became instantly famous as the English FA’s savior and the Dog that rescued the World Cup. He was hailed by all newspapers was featured in every newspaper in the country.
The English FA decided to honor the dog with a VIP seat at the World Cup celebration dinner at the end of the Finals. England won the World Cup and the World Cup winning Captain George Best Lifted up Pickles from the balcony to the cheer of the crowd below during the celebrations to honor its contribution.