Black Bob was the name of a fictional Border Collie from Selkirk in the Scottish Borders. Black Bob originally appeared as a text story in The Dandy in issue 280, dated 25 November 1944. Following this he appeared as a picture strip in The Weekly News in 1946, which continued until 1967. His ‘owner’ was Andrew Glen, a bearded shepherd. Black Bob follows his owner’s nephew who is playing truant and tries to bring him back to school.
Drawn by Jack Prout, the popular sheepdog appeared regularly in The Dandy from his 1944 debut until issue 2122, dated 24 July 1982. Eight Black Bob books were published at infrequent intervals in 1950, 1951, 1953, 1955, 1957, 1959, 1961 and 1965. He returned in the 2013 Dandy Annual drawn by Steve Bright in Prout’s style.
Jack Prout was born on 14 December 1900 and joined the Scottish publishing firm of D. C. Thomson as a staff artist on 21 June 1937. He retired on 30 June 1968 although his strips were reprinted in the Dandy until 1982. Shortly before his retirement, Prout acquired a black and white Border Collie. Staff at D. C. Thomson’s presented the artist with a spoof “dog licence”, allowing the animal to keep the artist as a pet. The document was “signed” with Black Bob’s pawprint. Jack Prout died on 27 September 1978.
Black Bob was parodied in a strip in Viz comic entitled “Black Bag, the Faithful Border Bin Liner”.