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My new paperback book: The Great Cat and Dog Massacre

2018 April 1

The new paperback -as bright on the cover as the hardback. There are still many cats and dogs – and budgies.

Last year my book, The Great Cat and Dog Massacre , was issued by the University of Chicago Press. It’s about the forgotten tragedies of at least 400,000 cats and dogs being killed by some of their owners in Britain at the start of the Second World War in September 1939. Although the war is often described as a ‘People’s War ‘ the actual circumstances around animals are  virtually forgotten .

I worked on new research from animal charities, state archives, diaries and family stories to bring a different story to light. Much had been reported in 2017 in various newspapers and magazines both in the USA, Britain (and even Der Spiegel and The Week). It was also reported online and has been shown on the University of Chicago Press website.

The publishers have now kindly brought out the book in paperback from Easter 2018 so it is much cheaper and still has lots of visual images. I still like the image from the RSPCA arguing that ‘some dogs’ would have a wad of cotton wool in their ears to prevent noise.  As the RSPCA image also adds ‘ Few cats will tolerate anything of the kind.’

I am pleased that the back cover includes the previous comment of Richard Overy, author of The Bombing War:Europe 1939 -1945, and says ‘ This is a remarkably rich and detailed history , not only reconstructing the unknown story of the animal massacre, but in the process offering a profound view of the way animals and humans interact.’

In the index are the specific names of 52 dogs and 36 cats within the book that I have included. It seems somewhat unusual in forms of historical books!

The paperback now costs less than £13 or $25 (depending on where you live).

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