Can I Borrow Your Dog? A coffee break tale from our archives

girl with dog

Man’s best friend could be woman’s best accomplice! Enjoy this coffee break tale from our archives

By Hayley Johnson-Mack


“Simon, I need your dog.”

Liz followed up her statement by perching on his desk. Simon didn’t look up from his PC screen.

“Why on earth would you want Dash?”

“There’s this man I like who hasn’t noticed me in the way I want,” explained Liz. “This cute guy walks his dog in the park every day and Marnie says…”

“Let me guess. You borrow a pooch and just happen to bump into the man while he’s walking his.”

“Kind of. You see, she’s got this theory about possession envy…”

“I don’t have time for Marnie theories today,” Simon interrupted. “And this isn’t Rent-A-Dog. Dash happens to be my faithful friend.”

“I’ll take care of him,” Liz promised. “Pleeease!”

“Fine. Take him. But I’m telling you, the last thing that mutt will evoke in anyone is envy.”

Liz just smiled and sailed away.

Liz didn’t remember Dash being quite so boisterous

The town park in summer was a glorious sight, especially when the sun was out, like today. The bushes and shrubs were fat with leaves and buds of different colours making them irresistible to passing feet and a dog who seemed to think that hiding beneath each growing mound was a squirrel needing to be chased.

Tightening her grip on the leash in her hand, Liz attempted to guide her boisterous charge toward the bandstand in the centre. She didn’t remember Dash being quite so frisky – nor so eager to launch himself at everything that moved, making it extremely difficult to appear elegant. Then she felt the lead go taut as a sleek Red Setter erupted from the bushes, heading straight for them.

“Heel, Bailey!”

Liz barely registered a flash of glossy bronze fur before the world flipped on its axis and she landed flat on her back.

“I’m so sorry!”

The cute guy’s face appeared above her. Liz staggered onto her feet.

“Are you all right? Bailey, heel!”

The Setter finally dropped onto its haunches. Liz smiled, relieved to note that despite letting go of his lead, Dash was still with them, vigorously sniffing round the bandstand.

“I’m fine.” She transferred her smile to the crestfallen man hovering over her. “I’m Liz, by the way.”

“Cole, and you’ve already met my delightful pet!”

Liz turned toward Dash, realising as she did so that she hadn’t retrieved his leash. At that moment, a squirrel darted out from behind the bandstand. Yelping, Dash tore after it, and Liz remembered just why he’d been given that name…

The park is exciting

“Your dog’s a genius!” Liz crowed as Simon opened his front door.

Straightening up from greeting Dash, Simon observed, “Look at you. You’ve got twigs in your hair.”

“Ah, yes.” Liz brushed ineffectively at her hair. “Bumped into a cute stranger then had a bit of a squirrel incident. But don’t worry! He didn’t catch it, though he tried. She fondled the mutt’s floppy ears.

“I’ll be back for him tomorrow, if that’s OK. The park is exciting!”

“Morning!” Liz sang as she approached Simon’s desk a few days later.

He sprang to his feet before she could pass.

“We need to talk.”

“What is it?” Liz demanded once he’d propelled her into the tiny office kitchen. “Is something wrong with Dash?”

“He’s fine,” Simon said, distracted, “and it’s not that I don’t appreciate the exercise you’re giving him, but… This park guy. I’m not sure he’s for you.”

Liz swallowed.

“Oh? Why, exactly?”

“Well… You know I care for you…”


Simon sighed.

“I’m no good with words…”

When he stuttered to a halt, Liz almost stamped her foot.

“What, Simon?”

“I… Oh, heck!”

Grasping the lapels of her shirt, Simon pulled her forward into a toe-tingling kiss that said it all.

Keep him on his toes

We’re going on our first date on Saturday,” Liz confided to Marnie over the ’phone that night.

“See?” Marnie said sagely. “Possession envy. When Simon thought someone else might be interested, he had to act. Classic dog-with-a-bone behaviour.”

“Of course, I didn’t tell him that Cole’s happily married.”

“Ooh, no,” Marnie agreed. “Keep him on his toes…”


Read more coffee break tales, romantic stories and serials
in My Weekly, on sale every Tuesday, priced £1.10


More online coffee break tales

Karen Byrom

My coffee mug says "professional bookworm" which sums me up really! As commissioning fiction editor on the magazine, I love sharing my reading experience of the latest books, debut authors and more with you all, and would like to hear from you about your favourite books and authors! Email me