Middle Grade Action and Adventure Book about Dogs and Ghosts in Tuscany! DOWNLOAD TODAY

99 cents DOWNLOAD

JUST 99 cents DOWNLOAD

My new Middle Grade chapter book Ruby and the Ghost Dog is finally out and just 99 cents for two days (20 and 21 June) only. It is inspired by my rescue English Setter Gassi  (that is his picture on the cover!) and my volunteer work for two years in an Italian dog shelter (“canile“). The book features reluctant 11-year-old psychic Ruby who has moved to Tuscany, Italy with her mother. She is soon targeted by a very special dog for a rather special mission and nothing in Ruby’s life will ever be the same again.

The book has already been downloaded almost 1000 times in two days and is hovering just outside the amazon top 100 so please give it a boost and download it! Once it goes back to being a paid book and starts making money then I aim to donate 10 per cent of sales to animal rescue. I want the book to raise awareness about animal rescue in Italy, in particularly the plight of dogs stuck in kennels, often for years.

The link is to amazon in the USA, but the book can be downloaded HERE for UK, HERE for Italy, HERE for Australia and HERE for Spain. It is available worldwide on amazon if you search for it by title. Please tell your friends as it all helps spread the word.

Praise for Ruby and the Ghost Dog

‘Fiona does a wonderful job helping children cope through any loss or isolation they may experience while growing up in a sometimes challenging and ever-changing world. Ruby and the Ghost Dog takes the reader on a fascinating journey which is filled with loss but that void is replaced with immense love supplied by the natural and supernatural in both human and canine form.  This is a must read for any child who has experienced any loss and/or any child that loves dogs!’ Prince Lorenzo Borghese, President www.animalaidusa.org and Ambassador to the American Humane Association

‘An enchanting tale that will appeal to dog lovers like me everywhere.’ Kay Burley, Sky TV presenter and Setter owner. 

‘In Ruby and the Ghost Dog we are reminded of the love between species, whether they are two legged or four pawed, and the beautiful connection which continues beyond death. Acknowledging grief for animals, as well as humans, this lovely story reveals the value of inter-species friendship. This book is a heartwarming ‘tail’ for all generations.’ Pea Horsley, Animal Communicator, teacher and author of ‘Heart to Heart: Incredible and Heartwarming Stories from the Woman Who Talks With Animals’ and ‘The Animal Communicator’s Guide Through Life, Loss and Love’. www.animalthoughts.com.

‘A mesmerising story that works on many levels. Ruby and Gassi’s relationship teaches us about loss and grief but also hope and love. We learn that dogs need us and that we need them as much, if not more. Ruby and the Ghost Dog will encourage everyone to think about all the dogs out there in difficulty and to think of adopting rather than buying a new dog.’ Pen Farthing, Founder and CEO of the Nowzad charity www.nowzad.com helping improve the welfare of animals in Afghanistan. Author of ‘One Dog at a Time’, ‘No Place Like Home’ and ‘Wylie’.

 

Cat and Dog Vocabulary

some of my animals in italy

La mia canina Maia con quatto gattini

 I’ve put some common dog and cat related words in Italian with phonetic pronunciation. The capital letters are the stress of the word.

 If you are at the vet’s and are not sure of the ailment try the English medical name as a lot of the scientific terms are similar in Italian and English. For example

uterus – utero, cardiac – cardio diabetes – diabete and so on. If you are unsure of the pronunciation, write the word down for your vet.

 

Names of breeds are more or less the same, but with Italian pronunciation! Here is an example from a genuine advert with the Italian authors attempt at spelling an English word: West Thailand wait terrier” (Say it out loud!)

 

Pet/Pets – animale domestico (ani-MAH-leh do-MES-tik-oh) animali domestici (ani-MAH-lee do-MES-ti-chee)

Owner – proprietario/a (pro-pree-eh-TAR-ee-oh/ah)

Dog/Dogs – cane (KAH-neh)  cani (KAH-nee)

Puppy /puppies – cucciolo (KOO-chee-oh-loh) cuccioli (KOO-chee-oh-lee)

Cat /cats – gatto (GAH-to) gatti (GAH-tee)

Kitten/kittens – gattino (gah-TEEN-oh) gattini (gah-TEEN-ee)

Male – maschio (MAH-skee-oh)

Female – femmina (FEH-min-ah)

Vaccinated – vaccinato/a (vah-chi-NAH-toh/ah)

Tattooed – tatuato/a (tah-TOO-ah-toh/ah)

Wormed – sverminato/a (sver-min-AH-toh/ah)

Paw / paws – zampa (ZAM-pah) zampe (ZAM-peh)

Whiskers/moustache – baffi (BAH –fee)

Tail – coda (KOH-dah)

Leg /legs – gamba (GAM-bah) gambe (GAM-beh)

Mongrel – Meticcio/a  (meh-TICH-ee-oh/ah) (you’ll also hear bastardino a an acceptable term)

Pedigree – pedigree (‘con pedigree’ – with pedigree documents) or cane di razza – cah-nay di RAZ-zah)

Cross – incrocio/a (in-KRO-chee-oh/ah) For example “incrocio Yorkshire terrier e chihuahua

Spayed/neutered – sterilizzato/a (steh-rah –lee-ZA-toh/ah).

Microchip – microchip (MEE-croh-cheep)

Breed – razza (RATS-ah)

Large – taglia grande (TAH-lee-ah GRAN-deh) (OK, the gl sound is hard so I’ve copped out here!)

Medium – taglia media (TAH-lee-ah MEH-dee-ah)

Small – taglia piccola (TAH-lee-ah PEE-coh.lah)

Beautiful – bello/a (BEH-ll-oh/ah)

Well behaved/good – Buono/a (BWON-oh/ah)

Short haired – pelo raso (PAY-loh RAH-zoh)

Long haired – pelo lungo (PAY-loh- LOON-goh)

Toy breed – nano/a (NAH-noh/ah)

Animal lover – amante animali (ah-MAN-teh  an-ee-MAH-lee) animalista (ah-ni-mah-LEE-sta)

About Pets in Italy

Fiona TankardBenvenuti!  My name is Fiona Tankard , I’m a writer and I have lived in Italy, first in Umbria and now Tuscany, since 1994 with my husband and a variety of pets. Over the years we have had cats, dogs, geese, a crow, fish, two pigeons and alpacas.

I started this blog to help homeless animals in Italy and to help non Italian pet owners owners and visitors too. I know that it can sometimes be hard being an animal lover in Italy. You can be thought of as ‘un po’ eccentrica’ as my last neighbour dubbed me, and as for having animals in the house – well, say no more!

My husband Alan and I moved to Italy with our original pets, travelling in the back of our ancient Lada estate bought especially for the trip. The dogs Kelly and Emma, plus cats Harley, Widget and Birkana went in the back and we set off with trepidation on a journey that had many highs and some lows (like almost losing the cat in a mnotorway service station carpark!) We slept in two tents at Chamonix, one for Alan and the dogs and one for me and the cats.

Since we moved here we have seen many of our pets come and, sadly, go. The most recent loss was of our lovely little dog Maia, who died of canine lymphoma. Our current pet family comprises one male cat – Jimmy, three dogs – labrador ZsaZsa, Internet rescue English setter Gassie, Internet rescue dog Mana’, rescue pigeon Lulu  and five alpacas – Nicola, Emilia, Champagne , Brunello and Dolcetto.

I add to this site regularly, posting blogs, resources, appeals, links and my own articles and photos. Please feel free to comment and get in touch if you have any questions or suggestions and I’ll be happy to help if I can. I am particularly keen to hear about any charities or appeals for animals in Italy that you could send me so I can post them on the site.You can email me on fctankard@gmail.com