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Anthony with FritzLife Among The Dog People of Paddington Rec

The same day that we returned after two months in California – having decided that we would not be moving back to the States at the beginning of our retirement – my wife Dorothy and I took our property off the market … and ordered a puppy. Fritz the Schnauzer arrived a few weeks later and by the end of June, 2003, we had entered that unique society of dog owners who people London’s Paddington Recreation Ground.

The society in which we were now to take our place remains a unique one, an ever-changing kaleidoscope of dogs and their owners. The dogs represent most of the popular breeds and many of the mutt-like mixtures – and so do their accompanying humans, who come from diverse nationalities and from many walks of life: professionals and job seekers, young and old, family members and loners. They are united in their love of dogs, and on the central green of the park, on its walkways and at the café where they gather after exercising their animals, they often let this affection for dogs carry them into friendships that transcend park life and involve many of them in additional social activities.

Fritz had been a member of the pack for about a year when I decided to keep a daily record of his antics and the folkways of the rest of the crew, human and canine. I have done so ever since. I reasoned that not only would this furnish us with an insight into the relationship of man and beast but that it would also provide a glimpse into London life. Such a life, we know, is full of struggles and tensions and these were certainly reflected in the chronicles that followed. I have tried to make this record a candid and accurate one.

Has any dog ever received as much dedicated attention as my Fritz? Has any canine society ever received such scrutiny? We turn to the diaries of Samuel Pepys for insights into London life as it was experienced in the latter half of the 17th Century. No wonder some wag had called me The Pepys of Pups ­– for my project, with its analysis of London life as it was lived in the first two decades of the 21st Century, is now ten years old. I published the first four volumes of “Life Among The Dog People of Paddington Rec” in a traditional print format and these are all still available either directly from the publisher at or or from, from or from any of the other online booksellers.

I must thank all of those who provided photographs for this project, the staff and management of the Rec itself, and my sister-in-law, Naomi, who assisted in editing. Special thanks to “London Janet,” Daisy-Mae’s mom, for designing the cover of Volume IX, one that features Fritz, and for many of the aforementioned photos as well.

Volume I: Strictly Come Barking, published in 2008 and covering the years 2004-2005.

Volume II: Have I Got Dogs For You!, published in 2010 and covering the years 2005-2006.

Volume III: DSI: Dog Scene Investigation, published in 2011 and covering the years 2006-2007.

Volume IV: A Doggy Day in London Town, published in 2012 and covering the years 2007-2008

With Volume V I have been able to switch to a new publication format, making Invasion of The Biscuit Snatchers and Volume VI, My Dog's Breakfast, available in e-book format, free for all who want to follow this story. Have fun.

Volume V: Invasion of The Biscuit Snatchers - this will take you chapter by chapter. For a full version of the entire book, click here. Note: this version is 7.2MB in size and may take some time to download.

Volume VI: My Dog's Breakfast - this will take you chapter by chapter. For a full version of the entire book, click here.

Volume VII: The Great British Bark Off - by chapter. For the full version of the entire book, click here.

Volume VIII: And Your Little Dog, Too - by chapter. For the full version of the entire book, click here.

The current effort, Volume IX, The Dogshank Redemption, echoes the famous film in highlighting the many attempts made to escape imprisonment by my dog Fritz, who was very successful in his efforts on a number of occasions.
Volume IX: The Dogshank Redemption - by chapter. For the full version of the entire book, click here.