2014, Children’s Books and Dogs

I wanted to write a last special blog post for 2014 combining two of my great loves, children’s books and dogs. Somehow I’ve established myself as a writer of children’s books about animals . . . for me that’s a natural occurrence – it’s the stories about animals that speak to me and ask me to write their story.

This year I’ve had two dog books released ‘Chasing Shadows’ and ‘Little Dog and the Christmas Wish’ as well as three ‘Hey’ books – picture books for very little ones with animals on every page. In the course of 2014 I’ve also rescued several dogs and a goat and along the way I met Harry, the very cute Westie.

As I’m writing this, Rhani the brown Kelpi has ventured up from our neighbour’s house down the hill, as she does most mornings (she often spends New Year’s Eve with us) and this Christmas was spent with some wonderful humans and four very special canines which is really what I want to write about.

First there was Max, the black Spoodle who greeted us complete with a red bow, making us feel so welcome with his enthusiastic greeting of ‘It’s been so long since I’ve seen you.’ All was peaceful – nine humans and one dog – maximum attention.

Then Maverick arrived – no, he didn’t want to sleep in the tent and he definitely couldn’t work out why Max was allowed inside and he wasn’t. He barked, complained and displayed all sorts of naughty behaviour . . . . all night long! The next morning Maverick was referred to as ‘The Golden Retriever’ . . . he’d clearly gone down a rung.

Next to arrive were 3 more humans and two more dogs – Sooty a little black mix of breeds, who was rescued by my sister-in-law found abandoned by a creek in the bush several years ago when he was only a day old and with her was Skye a 17 year old much-loved Border Collie.

To me humans behave beautifully, sometimes and sometimes abominably towards each other, but animals get it right. Sooty, Max and even Maverick treated Skye with superb respect in every situation – allowing her to pass, sleep and amble wherever and whenever she wished.

Max disgraced himself (when no-one was looking) by climbing up on the outdoor table and helping himself to 8 large pieces of gingerbread, The Golden Retriever redeemed himself with concern and cuddles when I nearly knocked myself out on an open window, Sooty guarded Skye constantly and beautiful Skye sat watching us all, drinking in the moments – just as elderly humans do.

In 2015 I have a dog book coming out in August and I continue to work on a verse novel called Rhani Brown Dog but for now that’s 2014 almost over.


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