Start your day with a pinch of best poodle

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We're in Chadwell Heath, Essex, ladies and gentlemen, and we're about to burglarise a house. Having gained access, we are rooting through drawers and cupboards, looking, obviously, for hidden valuables, when we come upon something unexpected - a bag of white powder, with the word "Charlie" inscribed upon it.

We're in Chadwell Heath, Essex, ladies and gentlemen, and we're about to burglarise a house. Having gained access, we are rooting through drawers and cupboards, looking, obviously, for hidden valuables, when we come upon something unexpected - a bag of white powder, with the word "Charlie" inscribed upon it.

This is fantastic, we think. Not unnaturally, we tip the contents on to the coffee table, get out a 10 quid note, and have a good snort each. Then we sit about for a while, waiting for the effects to kick in, but nothing seems to be happening. Why not? Well, maybe because the white powder in question is the ashes of a dead dog. The dog's name was, of course, Charlie.

The owner of the ex-animal, one Dee Blyth, said, "It was horrible knowing they were in my house, but the idea of them trying to get high on a dog certainly made me feel a bit better." Quite. But what I want to know is, what if it worked? What if snorting the cremated bones of an animal turns out to be a new drug breakthrough of Pasteural proportions?

Picture our burglarous chums, sitting back in Chadwell Heath, as the drug begins coursing through their system. Suddenly, they are overwhelmed by the need to get out of the house, run about for a bit, and bark at buses. They hit the nearest pub, lured by the enticing aroma of beef & Guinness pie, when Burglar A is unexpectedly overcome with the desire to sniff Burglar B's bottom. Burglar C, meanwhile, has his drooling head in the lap of someone who just happens to be eating a bag of crisps. I won't tell you what Burglar D is doing to the leg of the elderly matron; suffice it to say it turns out to be an unexpected treat for both of them.

Meanwhile, word has reached the ears of the ruthless barons who control the drug industry. The staff of Battersea Dog's Home are woken at midnight by leather-coated men in sunglasses and big hats who offer to "take the lot". Soon, no sophisticated West London dinner party is complete without little silver bowls on the table containing the remains of a high-grade Colombian chow. Advertising executives find that starting the day with a pinch of poodle really helps the creative juices to flow.

Police will raid the homes of suspected dealers, only to find their sniffer dogs disappearing on arrival. Politicians, meanwhile, will be falling over each other trying to gain a few points of hip credibility. "I tried it when I was at university," they will say. "It didn't do anything for me, but I can still balance a biscuit on the end of my nose." Others will voice their concern that sniffing dead dogs leads to harder things. Like horse, for example. Show-biz personalities will have their sordid stories splashed all over the tabloids. "How the occasional line of lurcher led me into animal-snorting hell. I was on half an elephant a day."

Liberals will call for legalisation. "If I want to sniff the cremated bones of a dead animal in the privacy of my own home, that's my business and nobody else's. Besides, it's not as bad as alcohol." Conservatives will make fools of themselves with public pronouncements at party conferences: "Anybody found with traces of a deceased animal on their person will be fined a million pounds. Unless they're a vet." Reams of newspaper space will be taken up by arguments for and against.

Worried parents will write to agony aunts: "My seven-year-old wants a hamster. What should I do?" Pet shops will be shut down. Blue Peter presenters will have their animals taken from them. The phrase "going to the dogs," will take on a whole new meaning. As will "barking mad." As will "got any skunk?"

And those of us who wish to engage in harmless activities such as growing plants in our window-sills and smoking them will, finally, be left alone.

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