The Writer's Pet

 The Writer's Pet explores the world of contemporary writers and their pets.

Two cats curled up by a book by the window: The Writer's Pet
Photo: Irina Kozorog/Shutterstock


By Zazie Todd, PhD

Charles Dickens had his pet raven, Grip; Ernest Hemingway had many polydactyl cats; Virginia Woolf had a cocker spaniel called Pinka; and Alice Walker keeps pet chickens. Authors love their pets, but how do they influence their writing? The Writer’s Pet explores the world of contemporary writers and their companion animals.

These are the writers who have been featured on The Writer's Pet. If you are a traditionally published author and think your book might be a good fit, see the guidelines for The Writer's Pet.

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3. Eva Holland and Nerve. Eva Holland, author of Nerve: Adventures in the Science of Fear on her rescued sled dog, learning to cope with her fears, and why some fear is essential.

2. Grant Hayter-Menzies and Woo. Grant Hayter-Menzies, author of Woo, the Monkey Who Inspired Emily Carr: A Biography on how his dog Freddie inspires his own writing, and his biography of Woo.

1. Aislinn Hunter and The Certainties Aislinn Hunter, author of The Certainties, on her three dogs, writing about animals, and the animals in her book.

0. Introducing The Writer's Pet Zazie Todd, PhD, author of Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy, on how her own pets inspire her writing, and inspired this series on how animals influence writers.

The Writer's Pet, illustrated by a portrait of Bodger the Australian Shepherd
Zazie Todd's late dog Bodger, inspiration for her book Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy
Photo: Bad Monkey


Zazie Todd, PhD, is the author of Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy. She is the founder of the popular blog Companion Animal Psychology, where she writes about everything from training methods to the human-canine relationship. She also writes a column for Psychology Today and has received the prestigious Captain Haggerty Award for Best Training Article in 2017. Todd lives in Maple Ridge, BC, with her husband and two cats.

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