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Kateri O'Leary and the Show Dog Scene
Kateri O'Leary and the Show Dog Scene
Kateri O'Leary and the Show Dog Scene
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Kateri O'Leary and the Show Dog Scene

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Kateri O'Leary has been searching for her 'thing' - her one true passion in life - and she thinks she has finally found it. But as she tries to get her rescue dog, Belle, ready for the Show Dog ring, life keeps getting in the way. Kateri's family has money troubles, her absent-minded mom causes major mix-ups, and her pet mouse is sulking. She can't keep up with school work, has a fight with a friend, and a bully named Clive is a thorn in her side. On top of it all, Kateri's Red Setter is an escape artist. Kateri thinks she finally is ready for the Show Dog ring...But does Belle have a different plan?!?


Release dateNov 21, 2020
Kateri O'Leary and the Show Dog Scene
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    Book preview

    Kateri O'Leary and the Show Dog Scene - Shirley Martin

    Chapter 1

    O uch! groaned Kateri O’Leary. Ouch! That hurts! Somebody was rubbing sandpaper across her face, muttering, These freckles have to go! They have to go!

    The sensation pulled her up, up, up, out of a deep sleep. She forced open her eyes. Her Red Setter, Belle, was leaning over her, enthusiastically licking her face with a corrugated tongue.

    Get off, you goofy dog! Get off! Kateri said. You turned my dream into a nightmare!

    She rolled onto her side to glance at her bedside clock, then shot bolt upright. Oh no! she wailed, I’m going to be late for school! Oh no! She dashed for the bathroom, then pulled on her clothes before leaping down the stairs, continuing to wail, Oh no! Oh no! Oh no!

    Her mom was at the kitchen table, clacking away on her typewriter.

    Mom, why didn’t you wake me? Kateri moaned.

    What? Mrs. O’Leary looked up, pushing her grey-blonde hair away from her eyes.

    It’s 8:30. I’m going to be late for school! Again!

    Oh dear, said her mom. I meant to call you, I really did. But I got caught up in this piece I’m working on. It’s so fascinating! The societal structure of the Peregrine Falcon! Did you know that…

    Sorry Mom, Kateri interrupted. I have to dash! Could you please take Belle out for a pee? Grabbing an apple from the counter, she pulled on her green suede boots, shrugged into her puffy mauve jacket and flew out the door.

    Kateri O’Leary, trilled her mother from the top of the stairs, you forgot your homework. They met midway. Kateri grabbed her backpack, and ran down the sidewalk, swivelling to throw her mom a kiss. Belle started after her but turned back at her mom’s piercing whistle.

    Mr. Mulch, their next-door neighbour, greeted her from his porch. Good morning Kateri. How are you today?

    Sorry Mr. Mulch, no time to talk. I’ll see you after school! and Kateri ran down the sidewalk and across the field, tearing through the main door of Haven Harbour Elementary just as the second bell rang.

    Phew, she gasped, sliding into her desk. Her new friend Sarah was staring at her, eyebrows raised. What? she mouthed at her. Sarah pointed at her shirt. Kateri looked down to see that her lime-green t-shirt was not only inside out, but backwards, with the label sticking out under her chin.


    Kateri O’Leary, her teacher said with her soft French accent, please go to the cloakroom and straighten yourself out.

    Red-faced, Kateri headed for the back of the room. As she passed Clive’s desk he muttered, I always knew you were backwards. She resisted the urge to kick him in the shin.

    Back at her desk, clothing readjusted, Kateri opened her book and dove right into ‘Training Your Red Setter’. She loved how Madame Bonnechance started class with ten minutes of silent reading. Today she felt like she needed the time just to wake up.

    Engrossed in a chapter about dog grooming, Kateri thought she heard her name. She looked up to a sea of staring eyes. The voice of Miss Inkblot, the school secretary, blared from the PA system. "This message is for Kateri O’Leary, I repeat, Kateri O’Leary. Your dog has followed you to school again! Please collect your dog and take it home!"

    My dog is not an it, she’s a she! thought Kateri as she stood up.

    Sorry, I’ll be as quick as I can, she told her teacher, grabbing her coat and heading down the hall. Belle’s black nose was pressed against the glass of the front door, her long red ears flopping on either side. She leapt up ecstatically as Kateri exited the school.

    Come on Belle, Kateri said grimly. We’re going home!

    Marching across the field with Belle dancing around her, Kateri said, "Belle, you have to stop following me to school! I love you, you know I love you, but you can’t be with me all the time!! I have other responsibilities besides you! I have school responsibilities!"

    Belle looked up at her, tongue hanging out, brown eyes shining.

    And don’t think you can get out of it by being cute! Kateri told Belle as they hurried along the sidewalk. Of course you’re cute! But you still have to behave!

    Chapter 2

    Approaching the house, Kateri saw their rusty red Land Rover in the driveway. Dad’s home, she told Belle. I wonder why? Rushing through the door with Belle on her heels she called out, Dad! Mom?

    In the kitchen, her mom called. They were sitting at the table, hands around steaming cups of coffee.

    How are my two favourite redheads? her dad asked.

    Been better, said Kateri.

    Woof, said Belle.

    Park yourself, said her dad.

    Would you like some cocoa? asked her mom.

    I would love some, but I have to get back to school, said Kateri.

    Actually, the school called, her mom told her, and they suggested you take the morning off. Apparently, Madame Bonnechance thinks you have been ‘on overload’. And since Dad has a half day off, we thought we could have a little family discussion.

    Yes, agreed her dad. The engine on the Otter Bay ferry quit. I told them they otter have it fixed.

    Very punny dad, giggled Kateri.

    Ha-Ha-larious, said her mom.

    Okay, now we’ve all agreed I’m a stand-up sitting down comedian, it’s time to talk, said her father.

    Oh oh, sounds serious, said Kateri.

    School is very important, said Patrick O’Leary.

    And you’ve always taken it very seriously, her mother reminded her. But lately you’ve been sleeping in, and not getting all your homework done. We’re concerned about you.

    You could have woken me up, argued Kateri.

    Now listen here, Kateri O’Leary, you have a perfectly good alarm clock. It is not your mother’s job to wake you up. She is working hard on an article about…about…about…polar penguins?

    Peregrine Falcons, Kateri said. Beaming, her mom handed her a mug of creamy hot chocolate.

    Yes, well, writing is her job, her dad continued. Your job is school. And part of that is getting yourself to school on time. So, what’s going on?

    Well, Belle wakes me up at night. Sometimes she has to go out to pee. Sometimes she wants to be petted. Rescue dogs need extra attention, you know! So, then I hit the snooze button in the morning, but sometimes I accidentally turn off my alarm, I guess. I can’t seem to help it.

    Mrs. O’Leary
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