• Hello, my name is Scrabble, I live in Hove, not Brighton, with a Human called Mike. Mike is a loveable human and I love him, though I don’t think he knows why.

    When I was a pup I wanted to be an author.

    I started life on a puppy farm in Ireland. My father was a cheeky Jack Russell who snuck into the Dachshund dorm one night and I was the result – the farm owner called me an ‘accident’ but I prefer Jackshund.

    One winter’s night I rather abruptly left the farm, when a truck from Battersea Dogs Home came to collect me, and a bunch of other accidents, to take us to London.

    I didn’t mind too much as London is the place where authors are made, plus the farmer had stopped feeding us some time ago.

    London wasn’t what I expected, so I took a holiday in the Sussex Downs at an exclusive writers’ retreat called The Allsorts Rescue Centre.

    As part of their, package Allsorts choose a nom de plume for dogs wishing to write books, and I arrived in a week that the theme for these names was board games. I narrowly escaped being called Monopoly and settled on the more intellectual-sounding Scrabble instead.

    I whiled away the days chatting to other dogs and running around the fields outside our accommodation. As part of the programme, humans would come to visit the resort and we would take them for a short walk.

    One day a Human called Mike visited, a scruffy-looking mongrel, but with an endearing smile, and I was at once both smitten by him and felt pity for him.

    I took Mike for a walk up the winding, tree-lined lane to the top of the hill above the resort, and sat him on a bench as he told me his story and asked me for help. Then and there, I decided to put off my aspirations to be a writer – I had been experiencing some difficulty holding a pen anyway – and make it my mission to train Mike to be a better Human.

    This book is my attempt to share my experiences of training Mike with other dogs who adopt humans. They can be exasperatingly dumb creatures, but they are worth the effort if you find a good one.

    (Taken from Mike&Scrabble: A guide to training your new human, available on Amazon and in all good bookshops)

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