I love collective nouns. I love authors with pets. So I made these up for fun.
  1. a "Flannery" of peacocks
    Flannery O'Connor loved birds. She lived with peacocks at her Andalusia dairy farm and estate in Georgia, and likened their singular squall to "a cheer from an invisible parade."
  2. a "Dickens" of ravens
    Charles Dickens had a pet raven named Grip who died in 1891 after swallowing a paint chip. Grip was known for imitating human speech and it's been long thought that Grip inspired Poe's "The Raven."
  3. a "Beatrix" of mice
    Beatrix Potter had a pet mouse named Xarifa. Here she as a teenager (1885) with her mouse, looking like Renée Jeanne Falconetti in The Passion of Joan of Arc.
  4. a "Toklas" of white poodles
    Alice B. Toklas and Gertrude Stein's white poodle was named Basket. After Basket died, their next white poodle was called Basket II.
  5. a "Wharton" of Pekingnese
    Edith Wharton was a founding member of the ASPCA. Her estate, The Mount, was known for its dog-friendly vibes, and a pet cemetery (which can be viewed from Wharton's bedroom) sits on a knoll off the gardens. Here she is with Mimi and Miza. She once described dogs to "a heartbeat at my feet."
  6. a "Woolf" of dogs
    Virginia Woolf's first published essay was an obit to her family's dog. She loved animals, was nicknamed "Goat" by all her close friends and family, and called her sister, Vanessa, "Dolphin." She also had a pet marmoset and squirrel, but I think a "Woolf of dogs" is sweet. Her black cocker spaniel (a gift from her lover, Vita) was named Pinka and they were tight.
  7. a "Doris" of cats
    Doris Lessing loved cats but wrote about them, and this is essential, unsentimentally. Read The Old Age of El Magnifico. It's note-perfect.