Unless you are a die-hard dog-lover and would happily see me non-humanely put down, you may giggle a little at this extract from The Road to McCarthy by Pete McCarthy. He is in New York.

“I pass a woman wearing a full-length mink coat over blue jeans. She has an expensively hairy dog on a diamanté  leash.

The creature is squatting in the snow.  When it’s finished she bends down and fills a plastic bag using her stainless steel poop scooper. Then she tries to wipe the snow from the smug mutt’s nether regions with what looks like a wet-wipe (surely pine-scented, if not Chanel 5) from the pet Hygiene emporium on Fifth Avenue. It has probably been made to fit his unique nooks and crannies. After all, they have special gymnasiums for dogs in this town. And cigar clubs for all I know.

Once she’s satisfied that the dog’s bum is free of unpleasantness, she folds the cloth and the evil little parcel, pops them in a paper bag and puts the lot in a pocket of her mink coat.

A visitor from another planet might presume that people picking up dog shit on the streets had been sentenced to it by the courts, rather than freely choosing it as a 365-day-a-year activity.

I’m hoping there’s  a warm spell and she forgets about the little treasure in her pocket until next winter.”

I suppose this is only her dog-walking mink (My other coat is a sable.)

We have not dissimilar duchesses in Chislehurst. There are also people who acquire a dog for the exercise it will provide and then employ a dog-walker.

There are also  old codgers who, if they were to bend down to service the mutt, would never get up. I suppose they are the ones who leave little surprises on the pavement. The dog is man’s best friend and so we should not object to stepping into its fraternal doodah.