You can’t keep a good dog down … or, in this case, downstairs. Dash has always been a ground-floor dog. Particularly in the new house – nice carpets and all that – we didn’t want her going upstairs and rooting round the bedrooms and my office. When we first adopted her, she didn’t even know how to climb the stairs. Accustomed to living life on the flat in kennels, retired racing greyhounds simply never encounter them. Things have changed, however, and it’s becoming harder to maintain the first floor as a ‘dog-free zone’. Only yesterday, Dash crept upstairs, sneaked past my office door and through the open stairgate into the bedroom of my toddler son, Freddy. Freddy himself was away at the childminder’s, so she took advantage of his absence to pilfer his favourite toy (pictured). The first I knew of it was a riot of squeaking and then silence. Bad girl; naughty bitch. Better improve your behaviour or there’ll be no book launch for you next month!