Classic Women Authors and Their Dogs and Cats

margaret mitchell and cat

Just like the rest of us, famed writers loved their furry companions. When it comes to the literary ladies, it seems like dog lovers outweigh the fans of cats by a comfortable margin, but feline fanciers have their say as well. At right, we find the rare cat lover in the young and beautiful Margaret Mitchell. It’s not clear whether this is actually her cat, but it’s one of those photos you see everywhere. Read more about writers and their dogs in the review of the book Shaggy Muses. Following are more women authors with their dogs and cats.

Beatrix Potter

Young Beatrix Potter and dog

Beatrix Potter grew up with quite a menagerie from an early age — rabbits included. It’s not surprising that she grew up to create Peter Rabbit and other iconic animals in her classic books for children. Above, at age 15.

Beatrix potter and her dog

Here’s Beatrix Potter again at a much later stage in life with another beloved dog.


French author Colette with her cats

French author Colette, best known for Gigi and the Claudine stories, evidently favored cats.

Edith Wharton

Edith Wharton and her dogs, 1889-1890

Edith Wharton as a young heiress before she became a prolific and multi-award-winning novelist, with her pair of dogs, circa 1899.

Edith wharton and pekingese

And here’s Edith Wharton again, much later in life, her penchant for two small dogs in hand intact  — this time Pekingese.

Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas, and Basket

Gertrude Stein (right) and Alice B. Toklas were devoted to one another and to their dog, the oddly named Basket.

Radclyffe Hall

Una Troubridge and Radclyffe Hall

In this photo, Radclyffe Hall (right) and her lover Una Troubridge, looking quite tough, while their bulldogs look decidedly gentle.

Daphne du Maurier

Daphne du Maurier and dog - 1936

Daphne du Maurier is pictured with a big bundle of fur in a photo from 1936.

Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf and Pinka

Virginia Woolf poses with her dog Pinka in her garden at her home, Monk’s House.

Virginia Woolf and Pinka_ Vita Sackville-West & Pippen1933

Not a great photo, but a rare one indeed, here are Virginia Woolf and Pinka, with her fellow author and dear friend Vita Sackville-West and her dog Pippen.

Dorothy Parker

Dorothy Parker and her dog

Dorothy Parker didn’t age well — must have been all that booze — but she seems to take great comfort from her adorable dog.

Margaret Wise Brown

Margaret Wise Brown and her dog, Crispin's Crispian

Here’s Margaret Wise Brown, the author of Goodnight Moon, The Runaway Bunny, and more than 100 more children’s books, with her dog, the creatively named Crispin’s Crispian.


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