Day 175: Three Cheers for Sweetikins

The facts

“Another dog’ll be fun,” said William.
But Ginger’s gloom did not lighten.
“Not her dog,” he said. “Her dog’s no fun. It’s not what you mean when you say a dog. It sits on a cushion an’ eats all day an’ snaps at anyone that goes near it.”

  • Number: 16.2
  • Published: 1934 (1933 in magazine form) – originally titled William and the Dear Little Dog
  • Book: William the Gangster
  • Synopsis: The Outlaws lose Ginger’s aunt’s dog.


The Outlaws agree to look after Ginger’s aunt’s rather prissy dog, in the hope of receiving five shillings in return.

But so objectionable is Sweetikins that they decide to maroon him in a quarry for the afternoon while they go and have fun, before collecting him later and gratefully giving him back to his owner.

William began to cough so uncontrollably that the tears ran down his cheeks, and, still choking, he rose and hurried from the room, obviously in order to ease his paroxysm by fresh aii: or a draught of water. It was a trick that he had acquired and brought to perfection just lately for dealing with the many crises that arise in school life, but his over-frequent use of it had aroused suspicion and it was now useless as far as school was concerned.

Of course, when they go back for him, he isn’t there (“P’raps he’s been eaten by rabbits,” suggested Douglas).

Their frantic search is interrupted when Ginger’s aunt insists on taking them to a meeting of the Kindness to Animals League organised by the indomitable Vicar’s wife. Hot news at the meeting is that one of the village’s youth, Bertie Franks, has rescued a poor dog that had been abandoned in a quarry.

Ginger’s aunt’s wrath bubbles up, but William, of course, manages to rectify the situation.