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A Double Dose of Driving Dogs

Past midnight. The house was silent. Almost silent…
In the living room, a hamster’s wheel rattled, and there were subdued bangs and
smashes from the TV. Tickety and Boo were watching Truck Wars with the sound
turned down.
Four large feet padded across the kitchen. Horace paused to lick the mutton bone
that Mrs Hay had bought him as a treat.
For Horace was back in favour. Mr Hay had been amazed to find his car. The fact
that it was covered in large, muddy paw prints puzzled him, until Joshua came up
with a reason.
“The thieves must have driven it back here, and then Horace recognised them and
chased them off! What a good dog!”
Mr Hay hadn’t been totally convinced. However, he couldn’t think of any other
“I suppose something like that must have happened,” he said, shrugging. “Mr
Mordle was trying to tell me some silly story about cats driving a tractor. But that’s
just ridiculous!”
Mrs Hay said, “Do you know, I wouldn’t be surprised if Mr Mordle knew the car
thieves! Why else would he spin such an unlikely story? I never trusted that man.”
So nobody guessed the truth. And instead of a scolding, Horace got a bone.
All in all, thought Horace, it had been a good day. There was just one thing he
needed to make his happiness complete.
The sweet, heady smell of petrol, oil and rubber …
He carried his bone into the garage and gazed longingly at the car.
It didn’t look quite so bad since Mr Hay had hosed it down. Although it still had
several bumps and scratches, once it had dried out properly the engine had started first
Quietly opening the driver’s door, Horace slid onto the seat.
“We never did reach the desert,” said a regretful voice behind him.
Horace glanced in the mirror. “Another day, K imi,” he promised.
“I’m too full now, anyway. I’d only get car-sick.”
“Have you been fed, then?”