Thursday, 3 December 2015

Losing Your Daemon - Sharon Tregenza

Recently my dog died and it hurts a lot. He had been a constant companion, padding beside me upstairs and down and in and out of every room. While I worked, he waited patiently in his basket next to my desk. He was the truest friend, and the inspiration behind Tia the beleaguered Yorkie in The Shiver Stone. So forgive the indulgence - today, as a small tribute, I give you 'writers and their dogs'...

First up - staff at a small Scottish dog rescue centre were surprised when a certain J K Rowling showed up with her family, including their Jack Russell terrier, Butch. The entire clan fell in love with, and adopted, a four year old greyhound named Sapphire.

Roald Dahl was another dog fan. He’s seen here with Cookie and Amber. They also figured in his work. There’s a gorgeous poem he wrote called 'Puppy and Me'.

Dr Seuss created many mythical creatures and in real life was a true dog lover. He also  
championed many dog-related charities.

Dr. Seuss (1904-1991) Theodor Seuss Geisel — seen here with his Irish setter Cluny beside his pool in La Jolla, California

Paws and Whiskers is a special anthology of the very best stories about cats and dogs from the world of children’s literature, chosen by Battersea Cats and Dogs Home patron Jacqueline Wilson.


It’s a collection to enjoy and share for many years. For every copy sold, a significant donation will be made to Battersea Cats and Dogs Home.

Francesca Simon says:  This book is very special to me because it includes a piece about Shanti, my 
wonderful Tibetan spaniel, who very sadly died last autumn. That’s Shanti on the cover, in the 
bottom right hand corner!

It seems as though pets attach themselves to writers; most authors I know have a dog or a cat. Maybe it’s the attraction of a constant, non-critical, listener to bounce ideas off.  Whatever the reason, dogs and authors have a long and loving tradition.


The world is a sadder, darker place without my daemon.

Sharon Tregenza:


catdownunder said...

Oh - a virtual hug from Downunder. I still miss our last cat - and it has been sixteen years now. Animals ARE part of the family.

Sue Bursztynski said...

I don't have any pets, alas, living upstairs, and I'm not willing to lock an animal in to be alone inside all day while I'm at work. Certainly not a dog. They need company. But when I lived at home, we had a wonderful white Jack Russell terrier called Jenna, whom we all still miss after many years. She was a stray who wandered into our lives as a puppy and lived to a grand old age. Two weeks before she died, she bashed up a German Shepherd in the street.

Joan Lennon said...

It's so hard - thank you for this tribute, Sharon. Thinking of you.

Anonymous said...

Dogs definitely are part of the family. I'm so sorry to hear about the loss of yours. I'm relatively new to dog-ownership (although we had a family dog when I was growing up) but my 2 year-old, slightly eccentric, alarmingly grinning fox-red lab didn't take long to worm his way into my affections. Taking him for long walks in all weathers and coming home to his whole-body-wag welcome has kept me sane through some tough times.

Penny Dolan said...

What a good post! Sorry to hear about this, Sharon. I'm sure many cats and dogs stay alive, in one sense, within a writer's words, and probably other pets and animals too. The bond between humans and animals is very special bond, especially when you spend hours alone, working. Good to have that comforting physical presence nearby - but not so easy if you have to be away from home or travel a lot.

(I also feel that a dog must help with writer's bum because of all the walking they require, whereas cats just enjoy writer's laps, the wider the better.)

Erika David said...

So sorry to hear about your Reilly's passing. I can relate. My dog Martha, who turned 12 yesterday, has been my constant companion through years of writing ups and downs. It will be a sad, sad day when she leaves me.

Thanks for this lovely tribute to the dogs in our lives.

Judith Barrow said...

It will be sad not to see Reilly when we visit this weekend, Sharon. But glad you felt able to write this lovely post about his life with you. He traded your love for him with his in equal measure. Take care of yourself, my friend. Judith x

Sharon Tregenza said...

Thanks to everyone for the lovely comments. I can tell many of you have loved your own Daemons.