Saturday, August 20, 2022

Laurien Berenson & Dash

Who is in the photo at right?

I'm Laurien Berenson and I write the long-running Melanie Travis canine mystery series. The debut of my new spin-off series, Peg and Rose Solve a Murder, comes out this month. With me is Dash, who's a 12-year-old smooth Collie.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

Early summer mornings, Dash and I are almost always outside. We live on a small farm so there are peacocks squawking and rabbits to chase, and Dash usually likes to say hello to the neighbor's donkey.

What's brewing?

I know it seems like heresy but I'm a tea drinker: English Breakfast Tea with a splash of milk.

Any treats for you or Dash on this occasion?

Dash is a great dog so he gets treats on any and all occasions. His favorite treat is tuna fish, which is even better if he can lick the bowl while my husband eats a tuna sandwich.

How were you and Dash united?

I got Dash from a wonderful breeder whom I'd met at a dog show. She and I have since become good friends. Dash and I met for the first time when he was 2 weeks old. Over the next 6 weeks until I could take him home, I also got to know his sire and dam and all the puppies in his litter.

How did your dog get his name? Any aliases?

I like short names, and Dash just seemed to fit. He also answers to Dee-Boy and Snoop Dog (although he rolls his eyes at the latter.)

Does Dash do more to help or hinder your writing? Has Dash inspired you to create any fictional canines?

He definitely helps. My Melanie Travis mysteries are all about dogs and Dash serves as a wonderful inspiration for all things canine. Plus, when I get stuck, he's already ready to go for a run.

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

None of the above. His specialties are rabbits, peacocks, and guinea hens.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

Absolutely squeaky toy, and the noisier, the better. As soon as he picks up a toy, he locates the squeaker and bites down on it repeatedly.

Who is Dash's best pet-pal?

Dash's best pet-pal was our other smooth Collie, Blaze, who we unfortunately lost recently. Now it's probably the donkey.

What is Dash's best quality?

His intelligence. Dash has never met a problem he can't solve. If I show him something twice, he's already learned it. He will follow the direction of a pointing finger so I can send him anywhere. And being a Collie he herds beautifully, even though he's never been trained to do so.

If Dash could change one thing about Kentuckians, what would it be?

I think he might ask that they have fewer horses and more dogs.

If Dash could answer only one question in English, what would you ask him?

Do you want me to get another puppy to keep you company or do you like being an only dog?

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Dash could speak, who should voice him?

George Clooney.

What advice would Dash give if asked?

He'd probably tell me to stop worrying and just take life as it comes.

Follow Laurien Berenson on Twitter.

--Marshal Zeringue


  1. Dash is beautiful! Love he has a donkey friend.

  2. Such fun. Great to have a short visit with Laurie

  3. So looking forward to Peg and Rose’s adventures!