Canis Major: An Exploration of Human Pup Play

Work has restarted on this project, the author had to prioritise their mental health demands and take a break but is now actively working on it again.

Jan 2022

For The Community, By The Community

The diversity of the pup play community can be challenging to comprehend but it’s a beautiful sight to behold. I have spent the past few years researching and interviewing members of the pup play fetish and its community to create this book to inspire others of the creativity and diverse approaches that are out there of people enjoying pup play over the decades up to the present day; maybe it will give you ideas to branch out and explore new things in pup play?

No Rulebook Here

There are more styles of pup play than there is breeds of biological dogs, and this is represented well in the book. It’s never been about telling people what pup play is or isn’t; it’s about sharing the diversity of ideas so you may come across conflicting ideas within the same chapter.
The aim is for you to be inspired, to not feel alone and maybe try something new. There is a lot of representation of different views, opinions and styles of play making it a colourful encyclopedia of history and ideas than any kind of rulebook.

Research Backed

We aren’t making any claims that aren’t able to be backed up. The biennial Nerdy Doggo research project is involved as well, helping us view data compiled from over 5,000+ pups and handlers from across the world of all shapes, sizes, genders and sexualities.
We’ve also dug deep into our community history, most people only see what the community has looked like after it gained modern popularity in the 1990’s. For example most people assume the current Mr Puppy UK is the first pup contest in England, without realising the world’s first puppy contest was still in the UK but in mid 90’s called Dungeon In The Sky.
This depth of research is actually what is making this book take so long. From us finding product catalogues from BDSM companies in the 1870’s (yes, 19th Century) to listening to oral history from survivors of the aids epidemic to find out what pup play was happening in the 1950’s all the way up to the latest academic research on the fetish and beyond. We believe that this information should be freely available to all to know our past and that’s why this has been an important factor of when the book comes out.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does it Cover Sexual and Non-Sexual Aspects of Pup Play? Yes, In depth! research has shown a pretty balanced spectrum between the two aspects so lots of both will be talked about and explored.

Will it Be Available as an eBook? Yes, but not immediately. We would rather the eBook to be the best it can be, so content will have links to navigate the book easier and direct links to original sources for the research found in the book. This extra work will take dedicated time after its completed.

Is This About Biological Dogs? No, this book is about the human role-play fetish and community, Puppies are humans who express themselves in a canine-like manner while Handlers are their pet-owner counterparts (this is extremely generalised). This does not involve biological dogs in any way.

How much of PupPlay.Info will be included in the book? Volunteer content on the website will not be in the book without prior permission from their authors. Some of my personal content has been included in the book but this is just a small fraction of the content. Everything on PupPlay.Info will stay online and free to access for all.

What’s with the typos and grammar? The book is written in British English, not American, so there may be some unusual spelling for those American readers.

Can I just read/access the community history content? Yes! I will be releasing a standalone eBook on the community history section of the book at a lower price. Because our community history should be as accessible as reasonably possible.

Where do you get your information or ideas for your book? I knew I needed to represent the community and its marginalised groups and styles but also if I want to make any kind of claim, I need to be able to back it up. So I have equally invested time into interviewing community members and fetish participants but also gathering statistical data with the biennial community research project that have large sample sizes and contributes to academic research about the fetish as well.

What has your writing process looked like? it has been an ebb and flow, while this book looks nothing like its original goals, those goals have been tweaked and adjusted as the book and feedback I get comes back, for example, the history section was only planned to be a 2 page bullet-point timeline, which now has turned into its own section and will be published independently from the book as well.

Is there erotica/fiction in this book? No sorry, every example in the book is an example in the book of the diversity of pup play styles. Some may sound strange, far fetched or confusing but they are real world examples and even if its something some individuals don’t like, they should be celebrated like any other form of diversity our human nature has produced.

How has the community input been like over its development? From the outset I wanted as much community input, feedback and involvement as possible. At the beginning I was afraid the book, with all its hard work and research would fall on deaf ears with me being a nobody back then in 2017, I reached out and got some promising volunteers and co-authors to help out with its development, some have been involved along the way intensely, some went aloof. But keeping the community involved and involving as many outside perspectives as possible has always been paramount to me.

What did you edit out of this book? There are so many quotes I would love to share, a lot of interview content from handlers and pups active in the the early 50’s, 60’s and 70’s have been edited out to respect the wishes of those who shared those stories. There have also been some great quotes of toxic history repeating itself I would love to share as examples but I have no desire to create defamation and have been left out.

Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find? Sadly there is not much written between the lines, at most will have some personal grammar quirks from growing up in New Zealand. While the book has some personal stories in it, most of the content is written to represent others in the content.

How long on average does it take you to write a book? I’ve been writing for about 20 years, the quickest project i’ve had published was 8 days (was a dare) and the longest took 10 years, it all depends on the content, whether fiction or non-fiction etc.

How did you come up with the title? When I started brainstorming what the book would look like, I knew I wanted to have two books, one big, one small. Since a book name is just a name and I enjoy puns, I thought I would refer to the two dog stars in Astronomy, Canis Major and Canis Minor.

About The Author

Taylor “Tycho” Cook has been hard-working volunteer in the Pup Play community since 2016. They are an out bi-Transwomen in their 30’s from New Zealand based in Melbourne, Australia.
Taylor has helped the Australian community with the creation of APHC (Australian Pup and Handler Competition) and the founding of PAH groups in Adelaide and Perth. Taylor has also helped the international community with the creation of PupPlay.Info and the Nerdy Doggo Community Research Project that is helping create academic literature to help representation and understanding of marginalised sub-cultures and identities.
Irrespective of being a wheelchair user, They are an ambitious person who will leap at any chance to help inspire someone to excel at their own dreams and passions; when not, you can find them around a campfire.

Timeline Of Developments

Developing a non-fiction book is no easy feat and having a journalistic approach makes it even slower, T’s need to be crossed, references need to be checked and interviews need to happen. Any book, especially of this scale isn’t something that appears after a few months, I have tried to keep the development process transparent, including its timeframe highlighting the time-consuming nature of creating a non-fiction work like this book and to get a scale of its size, here is some major timeline moments from over the years for this project.

  • January 2017: Writing Began.

    July 2017: First Draft Completed & Volunteer Interviews Begun (>220 Page Manuscript)

  • January 2018: Data processing of 2017 research project results begin.

    December 2018: Completion of first research project intake in 2017 (~740 Participants)

  • 2019: Project on hold.

  • January 2020: Inactive volunteers removed from the project. Resulting in book having a sole author.

    February 2020: Research on 19th Century Pup Play completed with the help of (registre national du commerce et des sociétés – RNCS)

    June 2020: Interim report on 2019 research project results completed (>5,000 Participants)

    December 2020: Interviews and community submissions completed (>900 Page Manuscript)

  • January 2021: Book development on hold till further notice. Author has had to prioritise their mental health demands and take a break.

  • January 2021: Book development begins again.