Jack Dee is introduced on Paul O'Grady's Saturday Night Line Up
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Mr O’Grady returns to screens tonight with ‘Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs’ at 8pm on ITV. The programme sees the presenter and comedian follow the highs and lows of life at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home. In the programme, which is in its ninth season, Mr O’Grady visits the staff at the renowned animal shelter and meets the dogs who come into the home needing treatment, training and a new place to live.
In tonight’s episode, the comedian and TV presenter, meets a gentle Great Dane looking for a loving home, and two bickering Lakeland Terriers who must learn to manage their behaviour.
Mr O’Grady, who himself is the proud owner of rescue dogs, shot to fame in the Eighties with his drag queen alter-ego Lily Savage.
In the following decade, he reinvented himself as a comedian and TV presenter, and went onto host some of television’s most popular shows, including Top of the Pops and Blind Date.
His massive success led him to meet royalty including the Queen, however Mr O’Grady admitted it hasn’t always been such a noble experience.
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In 2008, he was awarded an MBE as part of the Queen’s birthday honours list.
Mr O’Grady, who was celebrating his birthday the same day, told Liverpool Echo: “It’s a very nice present.
“I’m really pleased, really surprised. It’s something I’d never even thought about.”
The entertainer then admitted the last time he met the Queen he was “blowing a trumpet with my head between my legs at the Royal Variety.”
He added: “She was very nice.”
Mr O’Grady was referring to his burlesque rendition of ‘You Gotta Have a Gimmick’, which he performed with the late Cilla Black and Barbara Windsor for the Royal Variety Show in 2001.
The appearance was Ms Black’s comeback, as she had not performed in two years, and was watched by 11.5 million viewers.
The TV presenter, who is not one to mince his words, has since been vocal on a number of royal matters and even issued some advice to Meghan Markle when she married into the Firm.
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Writing in a column for TV Times a month after Prince Harry married Meghan in May 2018, Mr O’Grady advised the Duchess of Sussex to avoid “Americanisms” when with the Queen.
He said: “The Queen is easy to get on with!
“She likes a good laugh, someone who is straight-talking, so be totally honest with her.
“Try to avoid too many Americanisms ‒ always remember to say ‘lavatory’, not ‘bathroom’, otherwise you’ll really rile her.”
Referencing the Queen’s love of horses, animal lover Mr O’Grady added: “Become a horsewoman if you can.
“That family loves horses and it’s what the Queen likes talking about ‒ land and animals!”
However, Mr O’Grady then stressed that the newly wedded couple did not need to take advice from outsiders.
He said: “You don’t need to do anything.
“You’re a perfect couple and you’ve got a lovely marriage ‒ just don’t start letting outside influences affect you.”
Watch ‘Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs’ tonight at 8pm on ITV.
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