The Dog Revolution – the quirkiest 60,000 -word dog book ever written –
canine Das Kapital meets canine Kama Sutra - a satire upon bipeds with a loveable hero
 
THE DOG REVOLUTION

OWEN PARSNIP



To Parsnip Russell Terriers





DAY ONE

My name is Owen. I am known as a Parsnip Russell Terrier because my legs are shaped like parsnips. Or it could be parson to do with parson’s noses which are chicken’s tails after they’ve been cooked. Cooked chickens have very tiny tails and that could be the connection as my tail was cut short when I was a whelp in case it got bitten off.

I’ve been in a litter and you never know what could happen. Other whelps are striving to get to their mother’s nibbles in case they are starved out but I was a wiggler and a wriggler so I won through and got the milk meant for my little guzzly chops.

I’m now a lot bigger than when I was small. Parsnip Russell Terriers are not like those shortarse Jack Russells you see with miserable little titchy legs going like millipedes. Our parsnip legs are long and stern to get us along more in case of emerge-and-sees. When you’re out and about you can get scares but when you’ve come out of your shock you emerge and see if it’s something you can attack which it ain’t always.



DAY TWO

I was taken in a big white roaming-room and the son of my two-legs opened the door and put me out saying off you go little feller and good luck. Then he shut the door and wheels spun and the roaming-room got smaller and smaller to a dot so I knew I was chucked out.

I was in a big park with a lot of nature. So I ran up to some two-legs I never saw before and showed her I was a lost dog and she says where’s your ownie and I’m like - I ain’t got one no more - so she took her narrow cloth off her neck and put it through my collar and I walked by her to her home as my one was off-limits.

She put a funny bowl down with quench in it that had roses printed on the bottom and a thin crumbly but I never wanted anything only cuddles as I was scared. She picked my body up and sat down with me on her lap saying a lot of soft comforting speeches until I nodded out.

As I had no disc to say my name they never knew which dog I was. So I was taken to be whizzed over with a peeper meter and there wasn’t no peep so the notice went out about ownies coming forward and the dog warder who puts you in prison says to this two-legs ‘If they’re weak coming forward he’s yours’.

No one came foreword and I know why as they chucked me out.



DAY THREE

We had hardly any sleep as I was on this new two-legs snuggled up in her big bed to keep the terrors off me. She was shifting about all night trying to get the blood-flow to her different bits whereas I was well comfy. She kept saying ‘Owen keep still’ and ‘Owen don’t take up all the room’ but I never saw any Owen.

Today she got a long squirter snake and pointed it at the garden. I couldn’t believe it when all this quench sprayed out far and wide from its nose so I sprang into action and started attacking it right and left, leaping high on the run. It kept spitting at me big time and the more it squirted and spat, the madder I got with my leaping and biting. I was a dog on the edge! So then when it pointed straight at me to try to finish me off I just swallowed the quench and bit it worser and worser and got hold of its nose and finally it gave up defeated and got wound up on the wall. I was drenched but you can’t stop a terrier once his dags are up.

New two-legs says I was dry and grimy before. Now I’m wet and grimy. So I have to go to a dog grimer. Not sure what that in tails.

I been on about five walks today. I could get used to it here. It’s better than a prod in bot with a glass vet stick to find out if you’ve got a fever when you haven’t got a fever.



DAY FOUR

‘Owen’ is what she is calling out for me so now I come to that. ‘Two-legs’ are what dogs call all two-legs even if they’ve only got one leg. But I say this is wrong. I say they should be called ‘triangles’ as they are big at the bottom and small at the top which is a long way off except when they bend down. Then their heads get bigger all of a sudden. That can give you a start but if you let out barks that’s wrong.

Today new two-legs took me back to where I first saw her and walked me further on to see if I knew my ways. We looked at gardens but I never picked up on any scents and I could have told her there wouldn’t be nuthink as I was chucked out of a roaming-room. Then she took me to feed this big snort in a field. She said ‘Look Owen, this is Wossname’ (whatever name she give it) but when I set about it she pulled my carry-line away quick sharp.

She talked a lot on her chow. A chow is a flat thing they hold to the sides of their heads and talk out loud and it makes low whizzling noises. When they put it down they say ‘chow’. The real Chow is a truly famous dog with a blue tongue that gets made into chops and stews. Some two-legs have a black stick round their faces called Blue Tongue that they talk into when they’re speeding about which confirms it.

The dog warder that puts you in prison told her there’s been a claim. A Jack Russell bitch aged thirteen, white with brown ears which is like me, had gone missing but my two-legs said no I am a neutral boy, and this other dog wasn’t neutral and she had a chip when she was whizzed whereas I never. So we’re talking about two different dogs says my new two-legs. Then she turns round to me and says ‘Owen isn’t goin’.’

She wants to keep hold of me as I’m as cute as cute can be.



DAY FIVE

If you don’t know which is quench and which is splosh, it can be hard. Quench is small splosh that they usually put in bowls and splosh is big quench that can stretch out far and wide. Today we went on a long walk by a great long splosh and when we come to a round bit I jumped in on my carry-line and she couldn’t get me out as there were a lot of wiggles in the splosh and my job was to kill them where they come out. The more wiggles I see, the more I bit and leapt and attacked with all my might but I couldn’t stop it all wiggling as it was bigger than me.

We saw a narrow blue Spindly Dog being quietly scraped through with bristles by her ownie. Spindly Dogs do racing except when they’ve been chucked out for not winning. This one was a soft girl named Dainty and I sniffed her up but she looked down her long pointy snout saying: ‘Be off with you - I am a hackamadoo and you are a mere ninger-ninger.’ So I never got nowhere there neither.

New two-legs heard on her chow that the dog warder who puts you in prison says I’m not the dog they’re after. Phewee. That means I can stop here. I celebrated by helping her with the squirter snake in the garden. I killed it for some time and came away soaked. She says I am her Little Water Biter.



DAY SIX

The day started bad, had a good middle then ended bad again. New two-legs took me to Vet’s, where no dog wants to go when he’s on the last of his legs let alone when he’s a bouncy boy who can leap level with the coat rack. They put me on a flat rubber thing where you have to stand still, and the nurse says ‘something something killos’ but luckily new two-legs didn’t allow them to killo me and we came away with a little tiny bottle for killing flea-flies instead. Two-legs puts it on your neck when you’re not looking so if the naughty fairies bite they swallow this glue that makes them downcast and unable to hop about.

Then she took me walking through these snort fields which was exciting. The great snorts had their heads over the fences and tried to breathe me in up their big nose holes but I gave strong barks and that made them think twice. Snorts have big clonker paws for knocking down trees but they also eat grass, I expect to make themselves sick in their sheds. They like to run up and down and look big and they have long tails made out of hairs and big hairs on their heads so they look stupid compared with Parsnip Russell Terriers or proper animals.

Then the worst of it was in the afternoon, when I got taken to the grimer. New two-legs went off and forgot me, which was the first shock, and then this other big two-legs got to work. She gets hold of me and puts me in a trough full of splosh and scrubs me with foamings and bubblings to remove my grime. Then she gets a whirrer that blows hot air all over me, and then she whizzes at my wire wool with a shaver that cuts bits off until I’m short shorn like a lumpkin, and then she clips off my toenails all round with pinchers. ‘You’ll do’, she says, I don’t know for what, and she sticks me in a cage to cool my heels.

I was going to show off and never speak to my new two-legs again but I was relieved when she came and got me. ‘What a clean neat boy!’ she says, and takes me back to our home for a nice supper.



DAY SEVEN

We walked long and long. New two-legs said she wanted to tire me out but no luck. ‘Look at those ox-eye daisies, Owen,’ she says, so I sat in them nicely thinking I’d see their oxes or their eyes any minute and she says keep still and flashes with a little box to get my look at that moment. A great bird wheeled over us with his wings going fliff-fliff. He is known in two-legs as a hair-on but I’ve got good eyeballs and I never saw one hair on him.

Several two-legs came to our home and kept picking my body up. There were a lot of smotherings and soothings and one said ‘Look at his little pink tummy with black spots – perhaps he’s got some Dalmatian in him,’ as if I’d ate one. It just shows they don’t know about breedings. But I was a huge hit and behaved delightfully. One I liked called Jon had me asleep on his chest.

My belly keeps burbling. Sometimes it goes oink-oink and sometimes it goes weeble-weeble. It is very hurty so I’ve been eating a lot of grass. New two-legs says ‘That’s a cause not a cure, Owen,’ but I thought the next blade should do the trick so I wouldn’t leave off.



DAY EIGHT

Felt better suddenly. We met up with a Rough Collie called Laddie who has two two-legs and we all walked by a long splosh with lots of scents. Laddie told me I should sniff out the dog BY-ball, and I said what’s a BY-ball? I’ve only heard of ordinary balls. And he said it’s a lot of stories about dog faith and believings. Dogs have always been faithful, so this must be about that. I said I would sniff it out the first chance I get.

We walk miles with my little legs rippling tirelessly under me as I forge ahead on my adventures. New two-legs gets really broken down and stumbly and can’t keep up. I expect this is why Laddie has to have two two-legs so they can work in shifts.

I was given a slime green stuffed dog or more like bad fish green. I soon had its eye out so then it got taken away and I drank an extra lot of quench just before bedtime. Waited till new two-legs had zozzled out in her room and then called to be let in the garden to do the world’s mightiest wee under the moon.



DAY NINE

Fantastic journey in the moving room and I was on a short clip-line in the back so I had to keep asking when will we be there and will it be in a minute. Finally I was let out on my long carry-line at a very high-up place with stern winds, and when you looked out there was this terrific great grey moving splosh that completely stretched out from one side to the other. You couldn’t see a single spot for standing, only splosh, all churning and moving about. We walked down a steep slope and came to this fine soil that’s extra soft to tread on and I pulled on my long carry-line to look at the splosh, which kept breathing in and out and making cold foam that went between my claws, and if you lapped it you got all this salty taste like crispies. She wouldn’t let me off my carry-line as I am a very strong swimmer and might have paddled far out to where the sky rested itself on the splosh and being only a little dog I could have gone to a dot and I think she knew that fact.



DAY TEN

I was just finishing my saucer of cuppa when I’m thinking what is a dog BY-ball? What sort of believings are in there? I must find out. I must ask Stanley Moon, a Running Mongrel who lives with Geoffrey the Yorkie near here. Stanley can tell you a tale or two and he puts it all in his scent markings which dogs call Chumfo. That’s how dogs can pee-mail one another.

I’ve been trying to bring down this big oak tree over the nature place. There are two low branches that brush the ground and I’ve been working on them for some time, lugging and growling and gnawing, and the branches keep fighting me back and switching at my behind, and that makes me so fiery with this tree that I have to leap high and hang from its arms higher up. New two-legs can’t get me away because I’m so dangling and savage.

Sometimes I’m acutely cute and a merry mite, and sometimes I’m toiling and bundling, and other times I’m a dog on the edge. I vary.



DAY ELEVEN

No sign of Stanley Moon but I read his pee-mail and there was a lot of messaging in it, in which he tells the dog world about his two-legs or upright.

“My upright is not a good hunter. Not a good hunter at all. When we go to the forest on my expeditions, what does she do? Shamble about, smelling up in the sky and staring round with those squinny little eyes they’ve got. I’m the one that has to go muck-to-the-wind after our prey. I squeaked a field titch once, and on another occasion I actually broke a tree squit’s neck, which is quite a difficult and dangerous task in hunting work. Hearing shrieks, a male upright came running over to help. She had been bitten, my two-legs, trying to put the wounded squit back in the tree – may I fall down a drainhole if I tell you a lie – and the kill, which she wouldn’t let me finish off, was hanging by my upright’s thumb. By its teeth. I believe the two-leg terms is ‘squirls’. Anyway this ‘squirl’ was waving in the breeze, my upright was shrieking, and I was snarling, and the male upright, who seemed to have his wits about him, knocked the squit over the head with a log. I was ashamed of my two-legs, to be honest, standing there, dripping blood like a lump of liver.

“I’ve never seen her catch anything. Never. All she does is to hold on to my wheresyourlead while her smaller half drags her about. I’m calling it a wheresyourlead, which is the upright term, but it’s really a carry-line, such as I saw once on a big snort pulling a shed. Snorts used to eat dry grass out of bags and pull sheds for uprights. They don’t have proper black snouts, just two big soft windholes through which you can hear a blowing sound when you sniff them up, and great clonker paws, which is the reason they don’t hunt.

“The reason my upright doesn’t hunt is that she’s dim and dreary, slow and shambling, wears footflaps and footstilts, and has no natural hunting glee. I have the best time doing rushing work in the forest, with the wind in my muzzle and my ears sailing behind me like loose livers. She doesn’t go in for anything like that. Now, I like a good roll in stink, massaging it well in by kicking my legs in the air, and of course it disguises your scent, which is essential for any type of tracking or stalking work. Not her. No instink at all. Like today, the minute she saw me coming out of the undergrowth carrying a good think layer of dung, I got a twack. ‘I’ll give you a good twack’ she says, and there’s not a thing good about it. Plus when we get home, she throws two buckets of VETSmell water over me in ‘Garden!’”

Wow!! What Stanley put makes total sense to me. He is obviously a very know-a-lot dog and I shall read all his Chumfo in the future. It doesn’t take two seconds. You sniff it up and decode it and it’s stored in your brain so you can consider it later. You don’t need papers or scribbling sticks or clacker boxes like uprights. You just put your nose in the air and go ‘ffff-fffff-ffffff’ and it’s in there, and dogs have been doing this since time opened up.



DAY TWELVE

After a long walk round the great splosh at the back of the nature place, I finally saw Running Mongrel Stanley Moon and was able to exchange news and views. First I asked him where was the Yorkie who normally ran behind, as he wasn’t there today. This got Stanley started in a major way:

“I call him Runt. Runt is not his upright name, which is ‘Geoffrey’, but how can you can a tweaky-eared, sly little long-haired cantankerous little mangy little creep ‘Geoffrey’? He has baths every week and more clean fleas than I’ve seen on any breed of fourlegs, plus he’s got trouble with his anal glands all the time and has to keep going to VETS. That’s where he’s been today and they’ve kept him in for a search over.

“VETS is a place you wouldn’t go of your own accord. It smells of poisonous fright fumes and they stick you with sharp spines and put bad grains in your throat. The worst bad grains I ever had were little round white lumps that they tried to get me to swallow when I had belly burble, and I kept licking them round to the front as the taste was murderous and they said ‘Swallow it Stanley, good boy’, and they thought I had and I spat them out quick on the road outside otherwise they could poison you for no reason.

“When I was poor Stanley once, sicking up in the back of my second favourite upright Roy’s moving room, they took me to VETS and we came away with a packet that I knew contained bad grains and my upright gave them to me disguised in small chunks of lambs’ liver which I normally like. Comes time for us to set off in Roy’s moving room again, I’m dying of sleep and could feel my eye sockets trying to hang down on the floor with fuzzy conoodlums. We moved in Roy’s room for at least two mealtimes and I kept waking up and dozing out going along, hearing my upright saying poor Stanley, and she was the one that made me poor Stanley, poisoning my guts with bad grains dressed up as lambs’ liver.

“Sometimes, like last night for an example, I give them Stanley’s revenge. Stanley’s revenge is a natural thing that happens after digestion, when you lie on the living room carpet in front of a roomful of uprights and free your vapours. Uprights do it and pretend it isn’t them, whereas I do it quite naturally as a result of being poisoned over a long period, and it almost always causes uprights to scatter or argue among themselves. I usually wait until they’re eating or looking in the false window, which they do most nights.

“I once thought there was some connection between the false window and the true window, and wasted a great deal of my time watching one and then the other, and conducting experiments to see if an interesting fourlegs passing by the false window continued along in the street outside, but with no success. I realize now. The false window is connected up to some other place at a distance where I’ve never been, and that’s where my upright goes when she disappears for hours on end. I hope it’s not because she’s tired of me.

“It’s more likely that she’s tired of Runt, what with all his gland problems, which is why I let her see me give him a good vicious neckchew once in a while, pressing his head against the carpet pretending to flea him out and all the time click-clicking at his jugular with my big white fangs and glaring at him just inches away from his spoilt little morsel-nibbling tartary gobhole.”

As he wasn’t in a good mood I couldn’t get any information from Stanley about the BY-ball but I keep coming across scents that mention it and I’m getting wild to know what the whole dog world is talking about.



DAY THIRTEEN

New two-legs took me to a bustling place with lots of uprights’ legs going swish-swosh all around me and bags brushing past my bottom end. Hallo? Do they not see me with my parsnips scurrying underneath? A small dog could get badly killed round there. I was tied by my carry-line outside a shop while new two-legs disappeared for months and months and came out heaving a lot of bags herself. Then I had a shiny idea – this must be where they pick up their food that has been hunted for them! That’s what’s in the bags! This is why we never see them hunt. I must tell Stanley Moon. It’ll put his mind at rest. And maybe the dogs that are doing it for them are all Chows. It could be. So when they hold their ‘chows’ to their ears, they are begging for their food! Then they put it in hot boxes and cold boxes as they like it different warmths.

On our evening walk we met a fat black dog and I read his scent message for the longest time. Though I’m still very young I’m getting good at my Chumfo. Here is what he put in his pee-mail:

“My real name is Sidney McGee, but my other names are Doglet, One-y, Onedog, Pupdog, Toddly Dog, Lovedog, Pew, Hound of Love and Pog.

“I ain’t ‘ardly ‘ad no grub. Ownie never does no proper grub, only lumpies. I ‘ave to eat them ones or I don’t get nuthink. Sometimes I ‘ave chickadee. That's a more delicious one that one. I got several beds: my corricle which is my main one, the sofa with cloths, two chairs and my squashy bed. Sometimes I like to stretch myself right out. I have my own pillow. My bonce goes on that nice.

“I have grey unders, grey eyebrows, one grey inside leg, grey paws and some grey whiskers. Also my chops and chin are grey. Otherwise I'd be black. Some say I am a fat dog, but it's not, it's my chest bulge, from the accident. I was whacked by the great moving room at night what come at me when I was crossing the road. I couldn't move my body. I lay there under the great black moving room and lifted my head to ask for help. My body was soaked in blood, all different bits. I was dead alive. Ownie got me out on this blanket. They took me to Vets and put me on a table. Then I saw Ownie being carried out the door as her light had gone out. It was all the fright of it.

“Ownie loves me. She's always cuddling me up and saying hallo fat dog, hallo little dog and all that. Saturdays she rubs me all over with the sucking brush. It lets out this whirr and then this brush goes over yer, and it sucks your hair down this long pipe and away. You never ‘ave to get your tail in it or it would breath it in and never breath it out. I don’t know why this brush sucks you but it gets all my loose hair out lovely and any naughty fairies, and my bottom goes side by side as the brush whirrs up and down my body.

“Big Barry used to help Ownie get me in this white water holder. You stand in the water holder and they wash you in there and put foam on until you get scarey and try to jump out. My hairs go all over the wall. And then they rub you dry with big cloths and let you in the garden so you can roll in grass and muck. Then I get three dog grains, which is like biskits only very small and pathetic and you want a plate of them to do any good.

“Where I come from was like a dog throwout place with a lot of wire fences round our bodies, and everybody barking night and day to go home. Ownie come and got me out of there and put me in her moving room for the first time. When it started moving I jumped out the window as I wasn't sure, but she put me back in and tied my carry-line to trap me. We went forwards too quick and I got feary and put my front legs round her throat all the way but she never give it up. When we stopped we went in her building and she sat in a chair and I jumped up on her lap and shook with fright. But now I go in the moving room and stretch myself right out asleep as if nothing happened all day. I'm easy over.

“Except I don’t like skybangs. Even if they're far off, I know the skybangs are looking for me and my body rattles itself rotten. All dribbles come out of my black lips and I have to squeeze under Ownie's legs which she don’t like. If it’s night I jump in her bed and hide, and she chucks me out and I jump back in and she chucks me out and I jump under the blankets and go round and round and tread on her head. Sometimes this goes on for long, and we end up in the smallroom with a cloth over my head and Ownie cuddling me up under the sink. I get gasping in case the end is nigh and my light might go out, but then the skybangs fade away and I fall asleep nice while she goes out to work.”

Sidney isn’t exactly Dog Brain of Britain but even he had heard of the BY-ball. For some reason he didn’t want to talk about it. I kept scenting and scenting and in the end he said it was by Marks and in all the parks.

Pity new two-legs never lets me out on my own.



DAY FOURTEEN

New two-legs and another upright took me in the moving room to the great wide splosh again. It was extra windy and the splosh was churning about, and the lightweight chairs were blowing away outside the cuppa building. We had a picker-nick, with my food in a dish that went ting if you hit it with your name disc, and some quench in a different bowl with patterns at the bottom that put you off your licks. We walked a long way along this grassy spread that led down to the great splosh and white flutterers kept yelling and crying and swooping and the edge of the great splosh came coiling near me in rolls that were fantastic when they crashed on the shore but I never barked in case it curled round my body and lifted me off and away.



DAY FIFTEEN

I had a big argument with a giant white flutterer. It was guarding some lumps of fluff that were hiding in very tall blades with brown sausages on them, all growing along a big narrow splosh. New two-legs pulled me away as I was about to get stuck in. There were a lot of ners snorting round there making strong-smelling mud-cakes in the grass with piddle in the middle. The tall blades are given the two-leg name of bull-rashers as they bring bulls out in rashes if they eat a lot of them.

I think.



DAY SIXTEEN

Up over the air-field. They call it that because there is a lot of air in it. We walked miles and saw one of those brown speckled tick-flickers in the distance nibbling and nuzzling between the trees. It was a lot bigger than me but very shy and scared out of all proportion. When it heard us it bucked and flicked its head and its legs sprang it away to nothing but I could still pick up its scent of fright and worry for a long time after. I think two-legs eat them all up. Also you saw a lot of burrowers, which annoy you by bouncing their white tails as they run, and one high-ear, which is like a burrower only bigger and faster with weird stripy eyes. High-ears are brown with normal front legs and big massive back legs that spring them away flish-flash so you couldn’t get hold of them easy.

Most of the Chumfo over there was boring but one message was from a Spindly Dog called Jo. It said:

“My name was Joker but my Holder just calls me Jo. I am a Greyhound who was broken and who is now whole. I raced at Catford and won eight times. I always ran wide, because I have a cast in my eye. The rails were not clear and sometimes in the fast blur the rails would double and I would miss my line. I did my best. I would always run wide to try to avoid the terror of the bunches. This is where spindly dogs break their legs. The faster the dogs, the more their legs may break. I was always afraid that my legs would smash up in pieces. So I always ran for the space, and being a big dog, I could heave clear, and all the bunches would be behind me, and the crowds would roar me on and I would stay clear. My eyes would go big and fixed, and I would run like the fever of the wind, and all my muscles would pump and my mouth would gape and swallow the wind which was me, and I was the wind, and I would have the fake high-ear at the end.

“On my last fast day I ran wide as usual, but the second dog lunged beside me, breaking stride to cross me, and our back legs tangled, and I fell rolling and roiling and hurting, and when I got up my leg would not go. So they got rid of me after that.

“Even now when I am in my safe home with my Holder, I hear the roar of all the uprights and feel the urge to go fast again, and my eyes go wide and my heart starts to race and my lungs start to burst and I throw myself round and round in tight circles and cannot stop, until my Holder catches me in her arms and says ‘Jo, Jo, it’s all right Jo’, and I calm down then.

“When I came to my safe home my Holder bought me soft fur things, some round and some pretending to be birds or animals and I did not know them at first, or what I should do with them. I thought they were training, and that when she threw one she meant me to chase away and would surely jab my hide with a sharp stick like they did before to make me jump out of my trap and go after the fur thing. But she didn’t. And for a long time I couldn’t understand the pretend birds and animals. I had never seen things before that were not for work or training.

“When my lameness brought me up sharp, I remember what my Murphy said. ‘Big old boy’s finished. That’ll be my five hundred quid then. Get the van and take him out of my sight.’ And when the kennel-man was leading me off my Murphy turned and I thought he would say, ‘Hold my big old boy till I come.’ But he looked narrow and said, ‘Get his ears.’

“Spindly racers have numbers burnt into their ears to show where they were born and bred. When owners and trainers want to lose us they cut our ears off. But the kennel-man didn’t have time to do it. He just left me by the road and I was rescued and put in kennels with lots of other thrown-out spindly dogs. Finally my Holder came and picked me out. My Holder brings me out here a lot so I can run in circles and figure-eights to give me back my joy.”

Jo calls his two-legs a Holder which is wrong, but Spindly Dogs don’t get to mix much so they don’t always know their correct Chumfo. Also he says birds instead of flutterers or flutterbreads. Birds is upright, so he shouldn’t put that, but then he got whacked a lot so he’s scared to use proper Chumfo. I always thought Spindly Dogs would gnash me by the neck and shake me all about, but meeting Dainty being scraped on Day Five shows they can be peaceful even if they are stuck up and snobby. This Jo seems a sad Spindly. I’d really like to find out his doings.



DAY SEVENTEEN THAT CHANGED MY LIFE

New two-legs left me at home while she disappeared. This was my first time alone and I was wrapped all round in silence and bigness and wasn’t sure how to manage. I gave out a couple of strong barks but nothing came back. The walls seemed a long way apart and the ceiling was so high you could hardly see it standing on the armchair. You have to remember I am only a small dog. My belly began to squirm round. I thought if I ate one of my toys it might feel better so I started pulling my green dog’s head off. Then I climbed on the sofa and looked out of the window but couldn’t see anything lively. So I had a howl, and then I gave it up and dozed out.

When I was disturbed I heard the door coming open and new two-legs ran in and cuddled me up saying I was a lovely good boy and she had a present for me. A ball of my own! With a bounce in it and everything! This was cracker-jacker! Then she put my carry-line on and we walked a new way so I knew we were going adventuring. The meadow? No. The long splosh? No. The nature place? The air-field? No – all wrong. Guess what? The park! I couldn’t wait to get sniffing as I’d heard so much about the park Chumfo.

There was another dog nose-down already which was a tough burly Staffie with a big head pulling on his carry-line. I let him sniff his fill before I got started as I didn’t want trouble. Then I found a good fence post and after a few false starts I at last sniffed out something written in very ancient 1980s scent style:

If you imagine your body cut in half lengthwise from head to tail, you may find it a bit upsetting, but try to picture a cross-section with one hind leg and half a bottom, and this will illustrate how the body’s organs are distributed.

What a letdown. I couldn’t get to the bottom of it. Was this the great Chumfo every dog was raving over? What was it wittering on about? No wonder I had been warned off by Stanley. I might as well waste my time reading the Piddling Puddlers of Pudsey, which is a rubbish Chumfo book from early days before modern dog messaging. This wasn’t worth the effort of decoding even by a small dog.

But as my two-legs was on the seat having a rest I had a good sniff round and realised I had found what you call a middle piddle. That’s why it didn’t make sense! I had to go back and find the opening snuff. So I followed the trail from one end of the tall wire fence to the other, and suddenly there it was, hidden right at the back under a load of unimportant messages to stop young dogs from casually coming across it. It took me about five seconds to sniff, but then round my brain it went, and knocked me nearly over.



OUR MOUNTING PROBLEM

Brother dogs, we're up against it!

We've been trodden underfoot by the Human Occupation of this planet. We've let ourselves be bought and sold and chained up without sticking out for our proper rights. Instead of serving Nature, we've been mucking about serving Man, the Bringer of the Bowl. He has whipped and whacked us continually for many thousands of years. We have been beaten and broken! We have been chemically and surgically interfered with in our gonad areas! What's more, we've been prevented from freely choosing our own mates and leading normal sex lives. Oh yes. And palmed off with bitches of dubious genetic quality. A lot of them look like something out of a reptile house, or a laboratory. And these so-called 'Pedigrees' have been cloned by humans in order to insult us and ruin our race.

I had never sniffed anything like it before. I just couldn’t believe my nose. I let out a bark and that burly Staffie turned round on his carry-line and headed back towards me so I wished I could have sucked my bark back in. But he was OK. He scented to me and said his name was Milo. I scented back and said ‘Sir, what was this incredible Chumfo on the back fence?’ Milo looked at me as if I had been hiding in a drainhole from day one. ‘What’s that?’ he scented. ‘That’s Dog Marks. You’ve heard of him haven’t you, nit-nipper?’ I said ‘Yes sir, but I wasn’t sure of my sniffings.’ And Milo blew down his snout and walked away. So I went back to the fence and read the rest of The Beginning (for Beginners).



DOG RIGHTS FOR BEGINNERS

Dogs like myself, that are free of inbreeding, and who look like canines as Nature intended us to be, are referred to with utter contempt, as 'Mongrels', 'Crossbreeds', 'Heinzes', Bitzers', and 'Mixed Jobs'. Bloody cheek. Neutered and nobbled, we are! Sent to the doggie dustbins called 'dogs' homes’ and put down by the hundred thousand.

Look around. What do you notice, in this day and age? 'No dogs allowed’. Am I making this up? 'Keep dogs off grassed areas'. 'No dogs in this pub'. Shops, playgrounds, parks, beaches - we've been banned from the lot. Prevented even from going where we went before in search of decent mates. The Chinese have wiped us out in Peking. (They've eaten most of us over there.) The Icelanders have kicked us out of Reykjavik. We're getting the bums' rush, from New York to Walthamstow. And it won't end there. This species of garmented goofs means to do for us, once and for all. The anti-dog-poo brigade are after us now with pooper scoopers. It'll be guns next. Dogs all over the world are coming up to me and saying, 'Dog Marks, we are desperate! Our minds are mush. Our glands are on the turn. Our genes are up the spout and down the chute. Can't you do something to HELP us?’ It breaks my heart, Brothers and Brigands, to hear them PLEADING with me to take up the leadership, offering me their best bones to pour my genius into the fight. Well, all right, I said. I'll do it. But only if I'm obeyed at all times.

What can we do? We can act now, before it's too late. We must face the facts of life. We must go forth and multiply, until we outnumber humans and have our paws on the power. We must tackle our Mounting Problem, while we still have the tackle to tackle it with. And this book, fellow Four-legs, tells how!

What you are about to sniff is actually a series of lectures on dog sexuality, delivered by me personally (as the world's foremost authority on canine sexual politics), under the most difficult and dangerous circumstances, at dead of night in a makeshift lecture theatre in a highly secret location, behind the brickyard at the back of the Dog and Duck in East London, England. The Chumfo version was inhaled and memorised for transmission by three of my loyal followers, who risked being picked up and flung in Battersea Dogs' Home. The lectures were taken down verbatim, so readers should excuse any sordidness. In the interests of historical accuracy, outbursts from the floor have not been edited out.

The live audience - well, most of them were alive when we started - consisted of a band of dog brigands and freebooters who had sworn beforehand to die for the cause, and to accompany me on rallies throughout the country, throughout the world, throughout the universe, spreading the bark on dog revolt and sexual litteration. This is the Dog Bible. Read it, and be prepared to Bite for what is Right!

DOG MARKS

So this was it! The true dog By-ball! It was a lot to take in as my age is still tender, but I knew from that day my life would never be the same way. I was already perverted. I knew I should have to find the rest of this Great Dog Message and read every whiff, even if it got me into deep doodoo. This Marks was clearly a true world leader. More power to our paws! The dog struggle! Bite for what is right! Sects (though I wasn’t quite sure about that last bit)! Insects! Spreading the bark on dog revolt – yea!

My two-legs played with me in the park with my new ball for ages – fetch, tug, catch high – all the best games, but I couldn’t settle my thoughts. As we were coming away I saw Sidney and his upright getting through the gate. Sidney scented me a lot of nonsense about his bowl not being big enough and about lumpies and chickadee and about him not being fat etc. ‘I’ve been reading Dog Marks.’ I scented. Sidney looked shocked. Then he put in strong scents: ‘You’re too young to be reading that. It’s banned. You’re a bad dog.’ And he waddled off at a fast rate for a fatty.

I’m not being put off by some bubble belly. So I left him a message: ‘Sidney is a lard-arse’ and ran off.

My tail has a lot of itches, but as fast as you bite one of them, another sets off.



DAY EIGHTEEN

I could hardly doze out for thinking about Dog Marks. Not a BY-ball that you bounce, then, but really important big Chumfo that dogs are all reading round the world! I had to learn more. I was a keen critter.

On our walk over the nature place I met Running Mongrel Stanley Moon and Geoffrey the Yorkie. We were all off our carry-lines and rummaging about but when we quietened down I couldn’t wait to tell Stanley about the fantastic Chumfo in the park. He sniffed and snuffed and then left his reply on a litter bin, which is where you put your lowest Chumfo. It said:

“Marks is a loonie. His followers are all barking. You shouldn’t get into that. Dogs that have followed his Way have ended up losing their owners and their homes.”

That really ruffled me the wrong way. I scented that I was only young and I’d already been chucked out by rotten uprights once, and Stanley looked at me very seriously and put, ‘Be a faithful dog.’ And then he sent me a message that I stored for later as I couldn’t be bothered to decipher it and my two-legs was pulling me away home.

Stanley and Sidney must be old-fangled fuddy dogs. I am a modern aware boy. Life really is unfair and terrible to four-legs and what little I had seen of Marks made a big lot of scents to me. This evening I gave the garden snake a really good biting and set it loose and squazzling all over my two-legs which made her a moaning Minnie. Also I don’t like that ball she gave me so I tore it up, and I don’t see why I shouldn’t sleep on her bed like I did when I first came. And another thing - I’m not satisfied with the way she clicks me in the back seat of the roaming room when I want to be in the front seat. Plus, if we don’t head to the park tomorrow I’m going to sit down in the road and make difficulties. Bite for what is right!



DAY NINETEEN

New two-legs had a bad back so I was taken out by Ankle Paul. He walked me over the nature place but I had more fun as he let me off the carry-line. First of all I shot in the small narrow splosh after a bank blackfur, very bitey and dangerous, but I didn’t get him as he pulled away into a big tunnel. Blackfurs used to be made into coats but they were let out of wire prisons to live in the wild and now there are lots of them, all tunnelling and being vicious. One of the aims of Parsnip Russell Terriers is to get them by their bottoms but even if you are plucky, blackfurs can be truly savage creatures.

After that Ankle Paul said I stank. So then we met a cowardly, weedly Spaniel I don’t like called Hugo, who always has his tail between his legs and piddles himself when you go up to him. So I let him have a show of my gnashers and a low gurgling growl that set him shimmering and shaking and his two-legs had to grovel and apologise to Ankle Paul and said Hugo was a ‘Woosh’ (I expect because he pees himself). Dog Marks is right - that’s the reason we have all been downtrodden because of disgraces like Hugo who have let two-legs rule the rooster (although Dog Marks doesn’t actually say anything about cocker-alls). Finally my Ankle Paul took me over this planted place with beans growing up sticks and sprouts sticking out of stalks and shambly two-legs digging up and tending their growths. And I saw this very fat big long one they were talking about, and as they seemed scared to go for it I leapt on it and savaged one end before they got me off. Tasted funny like rooties.

My tail is getting lumpy from all the itches. Pretty soon I expect I’ll be in the roaming room again heading out for the sharp spine shop.



DAY TWENTY

Stanley Moon and Geoffrey were over the kicky-ball field. I told Stanley that I’d found out about the bag shops where two-legs get their food, and that it’s all hunted for them by Chows behind the scenes, but he didn’t seem that interested. He wanted to know if I’d decoded his Life yet and I said no but that I had it in my head to look at one day as it’s a bit long. He said: ‘You’ll learn, little fellow.’ Like that. But Geoffrey said not to bother as Stanley is full of his own wind. And I’ll tell you something that may surprise you: Geoffrey has read his Dog Marks. He says there are a lot of Yorkies in it by the name of Geoffrey. I thought I must have sniffed that wrong, so he scented it again. Two-legs have their own names for them, but all Yorkies are actually called ‘Geoffrey’ like Geoffrey. And reading Dog Marks will prove it.

New two-legs had her chow to her ear a lot, talking about me to the dog warder that puts you in prison. It turns out I’m her legal dog now so she’s going to get me ‘chipped’. So then she puts me in the back of the roaming room and where do I end up? Where do you think? V for Vet’s! And this Vet, which is called Robert, stands me on the high table and gets a giant big sharp spine that makes this ping go into me so it tells which dog I am if they go over my body with a peeper meter, and then he offers me this dried up horrible little treat thing that wasn’t even a whole one and I didn’t even want as it was rubbishy but I forced it down.



DAY TWENTY-ONE

I got left with two uprights called Ankle Jon and Anne in their countrified home in the middle of a lot of fields while new two-legs went off somewhere. I didn’t mind as they are always stroking me and carrying me up and down and letting me sit on their laps. Also they have a grand adventuring garden, much better than our one, with different lanes and areas to it and a giant white trough of splosh like our indoor trough at home only about thirty hundred times bigger. Their trough has straight sides, and the splosh is blue as the sky but I wasn’t allowed to jump in it to test it out. Ankle Jon makes me do sit and stay when I have my bowls down which I don’t normally but his voice is stern so you have to.

I decoded some of that Stanley pee-mail I snuffed earlier as I was bored. It was a quite interesting one.

My upright took Runt and myself to the river today – the River Leech, near Wolfhamstow. Well, not all that near. We had to travel part way there on one of those great moving halls that throw you about as you’re trying to get upstairs, and I hate all that swerving and shuddering. Whenever I have to travel in any kind of moving-hall or -room I like to stand on my upright’s lap and lean against her face for a bit of support. She tries to get me to sit down, as I’m quite a big lad and my shoulder gets in the way of her breathing. It’s always a bit of a struggle. I reckon that’s what makes me sick.

“Anyway, when we finally got to the river, seeing Runt jump straight in I naturally followed, knowing his legs are short little stumps, and what do you know but there was no bottom from all the water-rooms poking down and wearing it away, and Runt’s hair spread out like a floating plant with only his little black snout snorting above the surface, and I was paddling strongly and not very scared at all but couldn’t find any pawhold, and I’m not used to being in deep, only paddling where it doesn’t go up your nose, and I wasn’t desperate in any way and I knew my upright would get us out seeing me paddling like such a brave boy, and sure enough she hauled us ashore, me first, so what about that.

“We had to walk home, as they wouldn’t let me on the moving hall covered in slime.

“Today my upright disappeared until nightfall behind the false window leaving myself and Gutsache with Mrs Mother. When I heard my upright’s footsteps coming home I leapt up nearly to the sky, squealing out loud enough for her to hear me at smelly corner, and she took Runt and myself out hunting in the dark, though mostly on our wheresyourleads, which prevent proper spitter-chasing and seem to defy the whole purpose of going out. I did finally manage to corner a black moggie, against all odds mind you, and had him at bay on a piece of wasteland until Runt came trotting up yapping pointlessly and the spitter shot over a wall. My water dish has got more sense than Runt. A dead tic, or a three-day-old lump of ox-heart, has more natural ability than Runt. I’m not saying Mongrels are a master breed, or that smooth-haired, glossy, muscular, deep-chested athletic Running Mongrels like myself are superior to all other fourlegs except possibly the cheetah (I saw a cheetah once in the false window and I grant that is a smart breed of dog). But to spend time and effort, as my upright does, bringing home preparations and scents, and to be forever lathering and grooming on the draining board a worthless little hairy nitwit that wouldn’t frighten a family of woodlice, as my upright keeps doing, is beyond my comprehension. May I fall down a drainhole if I can fathom it.

“Next day I relieved all my pent-up feelings on the flutterbreads, which my upright feeds, and on next-door’s fat Schnauzer. He thunders up and down his side of the fence and I stampede up and down my side, stomping up a good spume of dust in the dry seasons and tossing dirt all over my path. Garden! is my domain. When I was a pup, my upright gave it to me for my very own because I was a clever lad and made a particularly effervescent pool on the carpet under Mrs Mother’s plonker. I don’t like the plonker, I must admit. Never have done. Mrs Mother sits at it occasionally, putting her fingers in its mouth and plonking strenuously on its teeth, which makes a terrible noise of gonging and twinkling. So I thought that would be a good toilet area for when it’s pouring with rain. I didn’t know my upright felt strongly about me taking over outside. ‘Garden!’ she said, meaning to show it was mine, and ever since I’ve patrolled it and staked out my scents as meticulously as time and one piddling Yorkshire Terrier will allow.”

I thought Stanley might be an old windbag, but he’s quite a spot-on dog really. He’s just not aware about the new dog rights and movements.



DAY TWENTY-TWO

Something bad has happened since we saw that tick-flicker in the woods. New two-legs was looking at my tail for ages and then she lets out a giant sigh and puts me straight in her roaming room. ‘Here we go!’ I thought, and sure enough it was back to the Vet’s which must be her magic shop for solving everything. ‘I don’t like the look of that,’ says Vet Robert, poking about into my tail and shaving it with a whizzer. And we come away with pills and cream and a sticky winder on my tail with only a few hairs hanging out of the end so I looked nerdy.

I was hoping I wouldn’t see any other dogs until I had the chance to chew this winder off, but we stopped off at the kicky ball field and there straining on her stretching line was Molly the Norfolk Terrier pup, squirming and screaming to get at me. She doesn’t leave any Chumfo or anything as she’s too wild and whelpy, so I just give out a growl and then ignore her. But I found another message from my friend Stanley Moon. He is feeling very down and dodgy because that Geoffrey, or Runt as he calls him, is giving him miserable times. Worse, Runt has started having very scary visions.

“I often sit staring into the fire reflecting on the sordidness of my life and the desirability of sitting on Runt’s face all night or pushing him down the coalhole. I know my upright would thank me once she got over the initial shock of adjusting our weekly meat rations, but there’s a sentimental streak to her that weakens the whole upright strain and makes them useless hunters. Roy is the only male I know well and I’ve got a lot of time for him because he does at least play roly-poly, and leaping and growling championships, but I’ve never seen him bite a spitter’s head off. Uprights must bring outside dogs in to kill their prey for them. I can’t think how else they get it.

“Recently my own two-legs turned peculiar and stopped eating meat altogether, limiting herself to plants and a sort of slodge I can’t put a name to, so I assume she’s had a dispute over hunting rights. I’ve noticed her poodling about in the forest looking in gorse bushes, no doubt for small game, but she’s not a bit of use. Once when we were staying at Bigwalks, which we do twice a year, I saw a flock of sheepshearts running about still alive in a field, and went after the smallest at a lick, and she was squeaking and screaming with excitement seeing myself and the whole flock spraying over the horizon, and when I came up empty of course I got a twack for that as well. She doesn’t think of the difficulties. I’m not a professional killer. I’ve been deadened by years of civilization.

“I can’t understand why we don’t live in Bigwalks, which is much better territory than Wolfhamstow, with more facilities. In addition to mud and bramble lanes and narrow tunnels through thick vegetation, they have live sheepshearts and ners roaming about in fields, and big snorts too, which are less of a delicacy than ners but do have an interesting smell. I’ve seen herds of ners up close in Wolfhamstow forest, and they have big pink bladders because they’re too lazy to pee, and wear bones on their heads because they’re unusually simple and wouldn’t remember where they buried them. But their dung does make excellent stink coats for hunting work, and you can track almost any small prey without it guessing there’s a dangerous Running Mongrel on its trail. Ners don’t eat small prey because of being too slow, and, more important, they have big clonker paws like snorts for knocking down trees - their basic food I imagine. (Note to self: on next expedition - notice if logs are at all chewed or not.)

“Uprights allow herds of ners to roam about in the forest during summer. In winter they probably pull sheds like snorts, but are rarely seen on account of their being no good in traffic. I do eat ner when I can get it, or lambs’ bits, offal usually, or belly-of-pigs, with chewsticks on the side, which is my favourite.

“My upright put a plate of tinned food before us once. I naturally assumed it was a joke, but Runt is apt to take these things personally as being some reference to his glands, and didn’t eat for two whole days to show his umbrage. There are occasions when I feel a touch of pity for Runt. H is after all such an ugly little todger, and I can’t think of anything Yorkies could ever have been used for, expect possibly standing in larders to surprise food burglars. But Runt is strange in other ways, and today was a particular example of such goings-on.

“We were on one of my expeditions (my upright lets Runt tag along to watch my hunting work in hopes that something will rub off on His Redundancy) and suddenly he had a fit, and tore off squealing. My upright found him cringing and quaking, lying on his back behind a tree trunk, with his eyeballs rolled up in his head. He told me later he’d seen a dead upright shivering in a bush, with his head hollowed out and shining like a lamp. Runt was taken to VETS where they gave him bad grains and pulled the hairs out of his ears. I was surprised they didn’t keep him in for suspected rabies.

“He has seen odd things before. Once he was in a smoking and shouting shop where they make books and watch a lot of false windows for snorts carrying uprights on their shoulders. He’d been taken in there by Mr Father, who went away before I came to the house, and Runt liked it well enough because they used to pet him in there and call him Pimple. One day he was in the shop watching the smoke spiralling up to the ceiling and the uprights swearing and throwing screws of paper on the floor, when suddenly he saw a brown scuttlebite walking on its hind legs over a pile of newspaper. Scuttlebites have poisonous teeth like fierce points and live in dark outlets and vents. When he put his nose down to investigate there was nothing there, except for a pair of yellow pin eyeballs glowing in the shadows.

“The most spectacular episode was when Runt saw the Wicked Walker.

“Runt was trotting along behind my upright and myself through the forest at a place called Whipps Cross, a famous shrine where they used to get cross and give uprights a good twack in olden times. Runt was just in the act of cocking his leg to own a tree when all of a sudden, it seemed to him, the place grew dim as dusk, and there in front of the old twacking shrine walked the most awful thing even Runt had ever seen: a terrific, large, murderous upright with boiling eyes, who had killed his German Shepherd only the day before. And it was certainly him, because there was the dog, walking at his heel, all weird and white, as though it had never been born.

“Runt panicked, and ran squealing into the road and was hit by a moving room with enormous sides. He lay there, dead and bleeding from one ear, and an upright got out of the moving room and lifted little Runt from the gutter, his head lolling from side to side with fuzzy conoodlums. We went to a dead animal building very far away, and they took Runt off to a secret room, and kept him there, dead, for two whole days. Then my upright, who had been very sullen at having to work out the new meat rations, went and asked for him back, and he ran about in Garden! barking at the flutterbreads and spitters as though nothing had happened. After that he could do no wrong, and the uprights started calling him ‘Boysie’ and ‘Triplightly’ as well as the ridiculous ‘Geoffrey’, and giving him dishes of milk like a spitter, and he never ever got a twack any more, not even for mating with the cushions.

“Seeing him sometimes from the rear, trotting down the alley with his hairy heels and his rumbustuous bottom, I think he’s bigger than me, because he sees magic things and I don’t, and he has special names and I don’t, and there are days when I think I might like to have been something other than a sleek Running Mongrel after all.”

I felt really sorry for Stanley. That Runt must be a foam-chin. He must be a rabies boy or something. He’s off his tozzle for sure. I’ve been thinking. Just because you’re a terrier doesn’t mean you’re perfect.



DAY TWENTY-THREE

A hot day of summer. Over the nature place new two-legs sat down in the shade while I ran about on my hunting work. Couldn’t find anything apart from tree-squits and flutterers up trees, so I looked at my two-legs and she picked up a little tiny twig and threw it for me to ‘fetch’. You have to laugh sometimes. As if I would a) ‘fetch’ and b) bother with a miserable titchy stick like a small flutterer’s leg or something. So I went off and rooted in the undergrowth and came out with something more suitable.

I struggled out with a rotting bough, about four dog-lengths wide, and though it weighed lots of tons, you could savage it and bite bits off, and if you gripped it right in the middle you could run with it at speed. So I ran with it at speed, her shouting out ‘Owen! Owen!’ as she stumbled behind me. Because it was hot I had to rest, so worse luck she was able to catch up and clip me back on my carry-line. But as I wouldn’t let go of my bough, and as this was my own personal bough and nobody else’s bough, I snarled and tugged and hit her in the legs and she had to let me carry my prize homewards even if it made her a moaning Minnie.

It was quite a way, along the path to the street with roaming rooms swishing past and right up to our home with the hedge along the front. Then when I tried to force my bough through the gap in the hedge I found a strange stoppage. But I soon worked it out. You had to turn your bough sideways to get it through into the front garden which I did do. I rested on the grass, panting like mad, and two-legs opened the front door. She had two choices. She could lift me up and carry me in, which I wouldn’t like, or she could lift my bough and carry it in, which I also wouldn’t like, but hoping I would follow. She chose the second, and as she got hold of it in the doorway, I gave a mighty tug and the heavy log hit her on the head, which didn’t matter so long as I got my bough in OK and she threw it in the back garden. So I lay out there for ages, stretched on the grass next to my bough, my tongue hanging out really far, feeling a sense of true victory for dogs. Then I got fed up and came inside for a drink.

I got my winder off my tail OK, but two-legs put another one on.



DAY TWENTY-FOUR

Over the park now is where I have my life-changing readings. I will never be the same dog now I know the Truth, and the giver out of this Truth is the greatest dog who ever lived, and his name is Marks, and he lived on this earth from the very beginning of time in 1980, and I, a humble Parsnip Russell Terrier, have sniffethed his first ‘Chapter’. And behold, there are eleven ‘Chapters’, and when a dog has read all eleven, he will be utterly changed into a different dog. Alleluya.

I came, I found, and I sniffed, and what I sniffed is here written. It doesn’t take a second or two as these days dogs have really instant pee-mails and Chumfo messaging. But let all who read it beware of dog knowings.





CHAPTER ONE



SOME VITAL STATISTICS

Good evening, Brothers and Brigands - don't answer back. Could one of you jump up and push the light switch on with his nose? Thank you.

It is now 10 p.m. Canine Mean Time, and we are gathered here, in this highly secret location behind the brickyard at the back of the Dog and Duck, to expound a new philosophy, quite unlike any you have ever heard before. Because of the tremendous danger and difficulty of trying to find a venue for future lectures, I intend to deliver my series of talks in their entirety tonight. At dawn, armed in the knowledge I am about to give you, we will march forth onto the streets to begin the Canine Uprising. Anyone attempting to disrupt this meeting will be severely punished and, if necessary, ejected by the Henchdogs you see here about me. Is that clear? Good. Off we go, then.

Four thousand, six hundred and eighty-four million

Four thousand, six hundred and eighty-four million. That is a vital statistic to put a burble in your belly. That is a figure to send pups and bitches of a nervous disposition scuttling in the streets. You know why? Because 4,684,000,000 is the number of human beings currently infesting this planet. Well, 'currently'. This was the figure for the 1980s. The last survey was done four years ago, so at the rate they reproduce, they could have doubled that by now. I think there were two of them originally. Two nude sex maniacs who lived the life of Reilly in a garden with a big snake. How many do you suppose there are in the United Kingdom? 56,763,000 of them. Fast breeding and reacting. What about the United States? 240,468,000. China? 1,008,175,000. All on bicycles and rickshaws. WHY ARE THERE SO MANY OF THEM? It's because they've all made a life-long, in-depth study of SEX. From the cradle up, they're learning about Private Parts, Organs, Bottoms and Boobs. Their whole lives depend on the subject. In fact, they attribute the original formation of the Universe to Sex. They speak about it with reverence, calling it The Big Bang. By this they mean the start of their population explosion, but I think there may be a naughty reference in there as well, if you follow. In any case, their entire culture is founded upon copulation. They do it at all ages, in all climes and in all countries, and they do it with anybody they can lay their hands on, as many times as humanly possible. Now and then, they take a breather. And do you know what they talk about on these occasions? The Dog Population Problem.

The Dog Population Problem

They don't know exactly how many dogs there are in this world, but however many it is, according to our Two-legged tormentors, it should be half that. One of them has estimated that there may be 150 million Mongrels (i.e. proper dogs) globally. Shock, horror, sharp intake of breath. Far too many! Dirty little devils! Exterminate the lot! In the United States there are between 50 and 80 million, so they're rounding us up and sticking us in decompression chambers. In Britain, where I have the misfortune to rake the streets, we run on a skeleton staff of six million dog souls. We don't have any seats in Parliament, and a lot of us don't have any seats at all and have to sit on the floor, but we're not complaining about that. We're worried about the 200,000 who get the chop every year.

YORKSHIRE TERRIERS: 'Pork chop! Pork chop! Oop the shop fort’

Pork chop!'

Be quiet. So all this is taking its toll on dog sanity. Increasingly, in Britain and America, canine patients with 'severe management problems' are being taken regularly to animal behaviour clinics, dog hypnotists and pet psychiatrists, where aggression and anxiety are dealt with on an epidemic scale! Let me recreate for you a typical interview at one of these treatment centres.

Typical scene at dog psychiatric clinic

Dr Mesmer-Mutley What’s the problem, Mrs Bingo?

Mrs Bingo Well, he went for my husband’s behind Sunday evening and hung onto his trousers, Doctor.

Dr Mesmer-Mutley Dear oh dear, we can’t have that, can we – what’s his name again?

Mrs Bingo Bungo, Doctor.

Dr Mesmer-Mutley We can’t have that, can we, Bungo old chap?

Bungo (sotto voce) Grrrr.

Dr Mesmer-Mutley Now, I’m putting this towel on the floor, Mrs Bingo, and in a moment I’m going to blow this very high-pitched whistle and signal with my hand, thus. When you see the signal, I want you to lead Bungo, calmly but firmly, over to the towel, order him to sit, and give him one of these Chewy Choccy Dogdrops. Ready? Right. I’m blowing the high-pitched whistle and signalling – now! Mrs Bungo – lead Bingo over, calmly but firmly – now tell him to sit: Sit, Mrs Bingo – no not you, the dog.

Mrs Bingo Good boy, Bungo, sit. No, sit!

Dr Mesmer-Mutley Sit, Bungo!

Mrs Bingo Sit! Bad dog. Will you sit your arse down! (A tussle ensues.)

Dr Mesmer-Mutley Hold him down, Mrs Bungo – Bingo – now quick! Present the Chewy Choccy Dogdrop. No, here – give it to me!

Bungo Grrrrrrr.

Mrs Bingo He’ll have you, Doctor. Dr Mesmer-Mutley Here, Bingo Bungo, have this Chewy –

Bungo Grrrr – chomp, chomp!

Mrs Bingo Sorry about that, Doctor, but I did warn you. He’s a bit upset.

Dr Mesmer-Mutley What the devil’s the matter with the damn dog, anyway?

Mrs Bingo I don’t know, Doctor. I think he’s bonkers. Should I have him put down?

Little does it occur to anyone to ask poor Bungo what might be troubling him, or why he is so agitated. Could it not be because hundreds of thousands of his fellow creatures are being fried and frizzified in electric boxes, or zonked to death in decompression chambers without benefit of clergy? Could it not be that he regards schemes to exterminate his race, and bans to prevent him from going about his business, as an encroachment on his personal felicity? Might it not disturb him slightly to think that a group calling itself EDEN - Exterminate Dogs Everywhere Now - achieved the dignity of a national campaign, with MPs and VIPs acting as spokespersons? Or that another group calling itself LICC - the League for the Introduction of Canine Controls - is arguing for the withdrawal of all his tiny privileges? And worse than all this, worse even than the whippings and whackings and wipings-out which he has suffered from time immemorial at the hands of his Two-legged Tormentor - is Bungo not kept, for fifty-two weeks of every year, in a state of almost permanent sexual frustration, so that his eyes are standing out of his head like organ-stops? Small wonder, considering all this, that Bungo is not rowing with both oars in the water! It's a miracle of nature that he can function at all.

Sex and the single dog

I could tell you of many tragic cases, here in my own neighbourhood, of dogs who are so strung out by their ungratified urges that they have committed acts of violence against their own persons. No doubt you will know of similar cases in your own area, tormented dogs who have been driven by sexual longings to assault and battery, petty larceny, bizarre grimacing, drooling in the streets, fraud, murder and pulling big lumps out of their own coats. I know of one particular case - let us call him 'Cross Patch' to protect his identity - who is in such a turmoil over his sexual drives that if he went to see a psychiatrist, the psychiatrist would have to see a psychiatrist. Poor 'Cross' is so uptight that if the phone rings, he attacks people in the room. If the bathroom door is left open, he tries to get his head down the toilet. He has jumped from moving vehicles and upstairs windows - on one occasion without bothering to check if the window was open. He runs up and down the staircase of his house for three or four hours at a time and then defecates on the duvet. He has attempted to have sex with human legs, cushions, a sofa, a laundry bag, the family cat and, on 5 November last year, a Guy in a wheelbarrow. He is now very ill with windpipe collapse, after dragging on his lead for over an hour in heavy traffic having seen a bitch in a passing car. He has been whacked like a carpet, drugged like a junkie, locked up like a common criminal, and threatened many times with the chop, a big stick, pulverization and gonad-removal. Tragic? I'll say it's bloody tragic. But for every 'Cross Patch' in my locality, there are thousands, perhaps millions, just like him, out there in the wilderness. Some have been neutered (see my coming best-seller, The Canine Eunuch), and spend the rest of their lives writing poetry and staring out of the window. 'We look before and after, And pine for what is not.' Some may even be here tonight. I hope they will all, like brothers of one inward fire, join with us in the Revolution. 'For it will come, brothers, oh yea, it will come! Alleluya - Give a dog a bone!' (See the Dog Hymnal, No. 35.)

DOG BRIGANDS:'Alleluya, brother/'

Six million British dogs. A pathetic figure. A catastrophically inadequate figure, if we are going to come to power in the foreseeable future. Yes, I know it's difficult. But think of this: if every one of us took his or her procreational duties seriously, in one year we could have 3 million bitches mated twice, with two litters each of, say, ten pups - that's 3 million times two times ten - 60 million pups, plus the original adult population - 66 million dogs in the UK inside a twelvemonth. Which would mean that, within a year, we would actually outnumber the humans on these islands.

Now, why is this not done? Well, we all know why not, don't we? It's because human beings, when they are not busy blowing each other up, are destroying and neutering the dog population, and when they are not doing that, they are copulating, and when they are not copulating, they are seeing to it that we don't. Am I right?

(Cries of ‘Yea, Alleluya!')

Good. You. No, you at the front, the Spaniel. Yes, you. Go and fetch my plastic waterbowl out of the yard, and put some water in it. You'll see a big pool out there full up with rainwater. Do you know how to fill a vessel? You take it in your teeth and pull it through the water, holding it the right way up. Then you come back and put it in front of me. Got that? Good - off you go.

Now then. Let me ask you a question. When was the last time you got lucky? Think carefully before you answer. If you're a particularly stupid dog like, say, a Yorkshire Terrier for example -

YORKSHIRE TERRIERS: 'Ere! Watch theeseln!'

- you may have to get a proper dog to help you on this one. Now, think carefully. Rack your brains. When was the last time you had sex? Not sex with cushions – real sex, with a member of the opposite gender of the dog race? Can you recall it? Some of you may have been chemically or surgically attended to, but think back. Try to remember - it's important. Right. Got it? You've got a clear picture of that wondrous event in your minds, have you? Good. Now, I'm going to ask you a second question. What happened next? The chances are, it all went something like this (and although there are of course no bitches among the Brothers and Brigands here tonight, I include them here for the purposes of illustration):

Female Pedigree

I was taken in a crate/car to a strange place.

I was dragged into a shed.

An oddly familiar, snotty-looking, bug-eyed and very unattractive male was led in.

I was muzzled with a bandage and held firmly by the two human owners.

I was raped.

The humans had a cigarette, and a tidy sum changed hands.

I found out later that the male was my father/brother/grandfather.

Female Mongrel

I was sprayed with a chemical to mask my scent, and locked in the backyard behind a six-foot fence, yapping my head off for two weeks.

One day, after much suffering, a brave dog came to my rescue.

He tunnelled under the fence, but finding his way barred by wire netting, he summoned all his strength and leaped over the six-foot palings.

He was a magnificent Mongrel.

We mated.

My owner came out and gave us a good hiding.

I was shut in the cupboard for the rest of my season, having been given a 'morning after' injection at the vet's.

Male Pedigree (stud)

I was taken to that blessed shed again.

There was another bitch waiting.

She looked vaguely familiar, but then don't they all?

I did my duty.

I went outside for a bowl of water and read the Telegraph Pole.

This job gets on my ****** ***** nerves.

Male Mongrel

After weeks of fruitlessly roaming the streets, I sensed a bitch on heat in the neighbourhood.

Arriving at the property, I did a quick recce and found the bitch was locked up behind a six-foot fence in the backyard.

I fought my way to the front of the queue, maiming a spaniel cross and getting bitten in the chest.

I camped outside for days, without food or water, hardly daring to take my eyes off the fence and dodging two buckets of suds from an upstairs window.

Tunnelling down, and being prevented from access by wire netting, I summoned all my strength and leaped over the palings.

She was a magnificent, beautiful Mongrel bitch.

We mated.

Her owner came out and gave us a whacking, driving me off.

I arrived home. The front door flew open. My owner shouted, 'Where the blooming hell have you been!'

I got another hiding.

And these were the lucky ones! The ones still intact in their personal parts! The ones with randy regions not yet removed! The ones not forced to wear canine panties and chastity girdles with little belts and braces available from pet stores. Embarrassing? I'll say it's bloody embarrassing. They're trying to shame us into submission, and turn us into garmented goofs like themselves. They're trying to wreck our confidence and make us all depraved and weird like they are. Are we going to put up with it, Brothers and Brigands? Are we going to continue to act like the daft dogs they think we are?

(Cries of ‘No! Bite the buggers! Rampage in the streets!')

Ah! 'The Bringer of the Bowl'. Very good. Put it down. No - there. There. Good dog. Sit.

As you can see from my schema of dog love lives, there is an awful lot of difference between the sexual opportunities of a Mongrel and a Pedigree. Now, some of you may be a bit puzzled about this. Some of you may not even know what is meant by Mongrel and Pedigree. So let me explain. Otherwise, when we come to the nitty gritty Sex Tips, some of you will be all ends upward about doing whatever with whatever to whomever.

Manmade matings

The basic difference between a Pedigree and a Mongrel is this. The former is exploited for profit by man, and forced to mate with creatures man has invented, to produce Frankensteinian offspring he can flog at fashionable prices. The latter, wherever possible, is prevented from mating at all. All Mongrel matings are 'accidental' and much frowned upon by man as mere love matches between dogs which don't make them any money. I am a Mongrel. As a young nipper I was given away. My litter mates perished in a box weighted with stones and thrown in the duck pond. Mongrels are wonderful dogs — every one of us an individual, designed by Mother Nature's magic hand. Mongrel matings are the only ones of which she approves, which is why she blights poor inbred Pedigrees with diseases and deformities. It is not their fault. We're all brothers under the skin, and I fervently hope that every Pedigree listening to this message will join with us in the coming Revolution. But it must be said that Pedigrees are man-made dogs, and Mongrels are Natural dogs. And the reason why our whole race is the laughing stock of the animal kingdom is that Pedigrees have allowed man to poke his nose into their affairs. The Pedigree business is at the very heart of all our Mounting Problems.

Sex between Mongrels is natural. Our offspring promote the welfare of the species because our pups have 'hybrid vigour' - a technical term for the hardihood that enables us to survive and flaunt ourselves in the faces of the human breeders. How did they get in on the act anyway? What business was it of theirs where a dog got his leg over, or who had hot boots for whom? You'd think they'd mind their own business, seeing the state of some of their Two-legged types, wouldn't you?

Pedigrees were originally bred and designed by humans for particular jobs: hunting jobs, sniffing jobs, guarding jobs, war work, rescue work, millwheel and spit-turning work, baiting, fighting and murdering work. When humans trained a group of dogs to round up sheep, they found that by interbreeding these particular shepherdy dogs, pups could be produced that already had a rudimentary knowledge of the job. Over generations, the talent became more or less fixed. This saved the humans the bother of training every pup from scratch — so you see how the breeding lark got started. It was a labour-saving device. Now, when most of the dog jobs disappeared during the Industrial Revolution, and the fighting pits were banned, all these Pedigree workers were suddenly redundant. The human owners had a lot of bone-idle dogs on their hands, all bred into peculiar shapes and sizes. Little crooked short-legged ones for poking into holes after rats and foxes. Great big ones for battling in human wars. Squash-faced ones for baiting bulls and hanging on regardless of bloody noses. Man scratched his bonce and said to himself, 'Now, what can we do with all these weirdo dogs that cost so much to feed? How can they be turned to profit? I know. We'll have competitions to see who can produce the skinniest, the biggest, the smallest, the hairiest and the most sausage-like. Then we can sell the useless little devils and make a handsome living at it!' And that is what he did.

Show fever brought with it breed battiness. The Bulldog with the biggest head and the most smashed-in features won a prize. Never mind that he hadn't baited any bulls, or that he might need an operation to enable him to breathe: he was the champion. The Chihuahua with the most sticky-out eyeballs and the strangest little cranium won a prize, even if it was too small and dense to breed properly. Over generations, they became more and more exaggerated - the dwarves, the midgets, the pug-faces, the giants. Canine freaks. And the weirder they were, the better humans seemed to like them. And the higher the prices they were prepared to pay for them. And the more incentive they had to breed from them to produce thousands more equally freakish puppies, to sell for even higher prices - and so it goes on. 'Oh, this breed dates back to the time of the Ancient Megalomanians. They were used to pull royal carts with their teeth, and had to walk backwards, which is why they have those protruding dental arrangements and front legs twelve inches shorter than their back legs. Pretty, aren't they? Give me £1,500 for the pair of them and I'll throw in a non-kick-over water bowl and a packet of Purepup yummie granules, which they've been raised on for generations!' And all the time, the poor devils have been bred from us Mongrels, as you can see from the ancient dog fossils in museums, some of them 12,000 years old.

You on the end - you look about 12,000 years old. What's your name?

BLOODHOUND: 'Bartleby, sir. I'm named after a character in one of Herman Melville's novels called "poor Bartleby" because his life is totally meaningless, sir.'

Why is your head all baggy like that, Bartleby?

BLOODHOUND: 'Because I'm a Bloodhound. It's my breed standard, sir.'

It's your breed standard. Come up here and show the audience your breed standard. Right. Now, do you see this? Look at this dog's head. Can you see where you're going, Bartleby?

BLOODHOUND: 'Not if I bend forward, sir. But I have a terrific sense of smell. Would you like to see me smell?'

Do you have a job, Bartleby?

BLOODHOUND: No, sir.'

Why is that?

BLOODHOUND: ‘I applied to sniff for the Army, the police and the Royal Air Force police, who train drug-detection dogs for Customs and Excise and so on, but they all said Bloodhounds were unruly and our eyes were dust-traps.'

And how long do you expect to live, Bartleby?

BLOODHOUND: 'Not long, sir. We big dogs don't live for very long.'

So you can't see where you're going, you can't get a job, you haven't got long to live, you look like nothing on earth, and you owe all this to human breeders? BLOODHOUND: 'Yes, sir.'

Thank you, Bartleby. You can go and sit down. So what's to be done about Poor Bartleby, Brothers and Brigands?

POODLE: 'Should he be put down, sir?'

No, of course he shouldn't be put down! Bartleby is not just Bartleby. Bartleby is a sign and symbol of what is wrong with dogdom in this day and age! Bartleby is what you get when you allow human beings to interfere with your sex lives! And what should be done about it? I'll tell you what should be done. From now on, dogs are not going to be bred by human beings! From now on, dogs are going to be bred by dogs! How is this going to be achieved? Through Sex, Brothers and Brigands. Through Sex, Sex and more Sex! We are all, Mongrels and Pedigrees, going to get out on the streets, and we are going to mate with bitches of our choosing! And when we've mated with those bitches, we are going to go off and mate with more bitches, and yet more bitches, until we have filled the world with pups who look like pups, pups as Nature intended them to be! And what are we going to do if humans try to stop us?

DOG BRIGANDS: 'Bite the Good Bite! Bite the Good Bite!'

Bite the good bite. Here endeth the first lecture.

BORDER COLLIE: 'What about the rude bits, sir?'

I'm coming to that.

Naturally I couldn’t wait to tell others about my sniffings of the True Leader. In fact I feel two feet tall when I think of my reborn ideas. But the first dog I came across in the park was Sidney, who was toddling beside his two-legs in a pathetically close way, looking up adoringly at her every now and then and being stroked and petted. And that’s when I decided to ask him about his breeding. I scented on a lime tree bole in a very simple way because he is a very simple animal. I put: ‘What kind of boy are you Sidney?’ And just as I suspected, he said his Dam was a Black Lab and his Sire had gone off.

‘So you’re a Mongrel then.’

‘No, I’m a Lab cross.’

‘You’re a Mongrel.’

‘No I’m not. I’m a proper cross Lab. That’s nearly a whole Lab.

‘You don’t have to be ashamed of being a Mongrel you know. A Mongrel is a correct dog of nature.’

‘I’m a cross Lab. I’m a love dog. You’re a wicked fibber, you. OWNIE!

And he shot off to his two-legs and started whining and wagging round her like a loser so I gave it up. Sidney is ashamed of who he is. As Marks would say, he’s had his brain washed by two-legs telling him all their proper gander about dog kind (although Marks doesn’t actually mention geese. Or cocker-alls). I’m going to ask Stanley Moon about my life-changing sniffings. He’s more a dog of the world. Stanley will know what to do.

I got my tail winder off and gave it a good chew. Spots of blood went up the armchair and down the sofa. So two-legs stands me on the worktop and dresses it all up again, saying ‘Owen, will you leave it alone!’

It’s my tail and I’ll do what I like with it. I know she’s been slipping bad grains in my breakfast as well, which I spit out when I find them. These uprights must think we’re pretty stupid.



DAY TWENTY-FIVE

My new two-legs has been even more shambly than usual. Last night she was limping about saying her back hurt. She had a struggle taking me out even, and kept holding on the fences. I hope she’s going to be all right or what will happen to me? I don’t want to be chucked out again. But then she did a funny thing that I couldn’t quite make out. She had me on her lap and kissed my head and said: ‘I love you little Owen.’

We sat over the nature place for a long time watching the wildness. Dog Marks has given me a lot to think of. What he says about breeders is really good and fierce but I don’t think my two-legs is a type of breeder. I haven’t seen her breeding at all. Also she doesn’t smack me or force me into anything like he says. So you have to be a bit careful when you’re doing your thinking.

Also what are those Sects Marks keeps talking about? And what is a Brigand? Is that the end of brig that goes over a long narrow splosh? I bet Stanley Moon will clear up a lot of these puzzlings. It’s very difficult when you’re a small dog. You can’t always see over the tops of things.



DAY TWENTY-SIX

This morning my two-legs was in that white trough again, the same one where I get washed when I’ve been in stink. She gets in there a lot even if she’s not that grimy so I thought I’d give her a nice surprise today and in I jumped. She wasn’t a bit grateful. She let out a yell and threw me out with suds on. The water was hotter than I like and too deep anyway. Plus there were too many suds and I don’t think it was proper flea shampoo.

Ankle Paul took me over the kicky-ball field this evening where I had a go at a Boxer girl called Loosey. I don’t like her because she looks all squashed in. I scented: ‘You should straighten your face out. Marks would put you in the corner for being an ugly bugly!’ and she got quite nasty with me. That’s because she’s been bred funny.

But then who should I see but Geoffrey the Vision Dog hurrying along and sure enough, Stanley Moon and their two-legs bringing up the rear. I couldn’t wait to exchange Chumfo! But something was wrong. Stanley’s head was really hanging and his tail was down. It looked as if all the shine had gone out of his coat. It took me a good few scentings to find out what had happened. Then he put:

“Hairy Herbert, alias ‘Boysie’ Runt Todswaddle, is about to bring out my latent savagery. Today my upright disappeared till darkness behind the false window, but before she went she took myself and Runt to the green patch behind the field to pee. I was about to scent the fence with a reasonably important message when who should I see but my very terrific favourite and best four-legs, Tid, short for Tiddler. Now, to the ignorant eye, Tid is a coarse-coated black Mongrel with floppy ears and a touch of grey in his muzzle, which may not sound particularly comely, but oh, no words can convey the rare skip in his stride, the frisky side leap, the winsome head tilt of Tid! Nothing on earth can match Tid for a blithe tripping gait or debonair smell. No bitch I ever saw (and admittedly I haven’t seen all that many at close quarters) have ever imprisoned my mind and soul like Tid’s casual air, Tid’s black jewel paws, tripping and turning in the rain.

Oh Tid, my Tid!
What rump steak’s in
Thy brown eye hid!
What cheetah ways
Hast though copied,
Oh Tid!

“Well, Tiddler and I were frolicking on the waste patch for some time, twirling and sniffing, when my upright began to drag on my carry-line saying she had to go to work, and though I squirmed violently and tried to slip my head out of my collar she managed to drag me home by main force, and got me in the front door where I let out an ear-piercing whine to see, through the true window, none other than Runt, with no wheresyourlead on whatsoever, chasing my Tid across the road, and Mrs Mother chasing after both, clapping her hands and braying, and all three disappearing down the street, with Tid thoroughly put off from the area and perhaps run down by a moving room – and all because of Squidgy Glands.”

Poor Stanley! That Runt has some terrible behaviours. I could tell Stanley needed something to give him back his dogdom and make him feel more cheery. So I scented him the whole of Marks Chapter One and stood back to let him decode it. I thought it would have a good effect. He sniffed, and then he snorted, and then he looked at me and said, ‘That’s Marks again. Don’t keep scenting about Marks.’ And I said ‘But why not, Stanley Moon? Marks will make us free!’ And he said, ‘You want to watch yourself with that stuff, little fellow.’ And then off he went with Runt running hard to keep up.

I don’t understand what’s the matter with some dogs. I’m only trying to spread the stirrings and give out the scent of the revolution. We have to learn how to fight back against our pressers. We have to uprise. We have to bite the good bite.



DAY TWENTY-SEVEN

My two-legs is much better and played with me lots, including tug-your-rubber-loop, which is where I get lifted up in the air and won’t give it up, and cloth-sausage-chucking, and throws-and-nose where she tosses little bits of meaty chew round the garden and I go and find them using scent alone.

Then we went over Ankle Jon’s, where I stood on the edge of their big blue trough in the garden, and I could see a beetle wiggling trying to save itself except it couldn’t as it was too drowning. And as I looked over I suddenly caught a glimpse of this small hairy face with white whiskery eyes and brown ears with one sticky-up, and I thought that must be their Splosh Dog - and he’s looking at me funny! So I gave a good jump and landed splish-splash in the middle of him and that made him clear off. But then I paddled like mad and got into difficult times and they had trouble to get me out with a scoop thing.

Although they have that Splosh Dog, I don’t think Ankle Jon and Anne are breeders. I haven’t seen any other dogs around there, which there definitely would be if they were doing any breedings. So maybe Dog Marks doesn’t know every single thing. Also it worries me that I was bred, but I’m not a ‘canine freak’ because all the two-legs say I’m a ‘dear little lad’. Plus I don’t think two-legs are trying to interfere with my Sects life as I haven’t even got a sect. But on the other side, I very much want to be part of the Great Uprising. I don’t want to be left out of the dog event of the world for lack of faithfulness. And all this sets me worrying that I have too many doubtings, and I thought Stanley Moon would set me straight, but he’s gone all humpy with me.

The best thing is if I sniff Chapter Two. That should clear up my mind.

This evening we went back to the sharp spine shop and Vet Robert looks at my tail, which has gone funny from all the windings and creams I’ve had on it. And he says to my two-legs, ‘Tails are always a problem because of the poor blood supply. He now has a deep-rooted infection. The best option is for me to amputate.’ My two-legs hugged me up tight, and said to think of some other option, and we came away with more winders and pills.

This wasn’t good. I went home thinking about deep roots in my tail and cutting off my poor blood, and was it normal to have tail roots, and ‘options’, and what was ‘amputate’, and my belly began to burble so loud it kept me awake all night.



DAY TWENTY-EIGHT

I got two tail winders off, one last night and one this morning, leaving little white cones on the floor. But as fast as I get them off, two-legs sticks more ones on. So I always look nerdy.

Over the park I met Jo the Spindly Dog again. He is a mysterious character and though he snuffs a lot he doesn’t leave many messages. But I think he likes me. I told him when I’m in the park I get excited because I get the chance to sniff Marks, and he looked at me with his grey eyes and said Marks was a Very Great Leader, and he knew a lot about his teachings because Greyhounds are very pressed dogs and suffer a lot, and they spread the Word of Hope in their kennels. He said a Greyhound of his line, called My Son, was one of Dog Marks’ original followers and helped to spread his Chumfo in the earliest days. Wow! How famous is that! I saw Big Jo in new lightings!

But then when Jo saw Stanley Moon and Runt in the distance he said he had to leave. And I said why, and he said, ‘Because Stanley Moon thinks he’s a running and racing dog when he’s just a Mongrel. And if you say anything it breaks his dreams.’ And I watched Jo loping off on his long carry-line and thought what a big champion he must have been.

But then I pulled over to the back of the park where all the great scenting is laid. And then my life changed again

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