Posted in Doggone Good Reads!

“A Dog’s Purpose”

Anyone who knows me well knows that it is my goal to author child and adult literature. I’ve dreamt of writing fiction and nonfiction stories from the perspective of my own dogs to capture the essence of our human-animal bond. My experiences in the assistance dogs community, however, ignited a reluctance to utilizing such an anthropomorphic approach in my writing. To mediate this inner conflict and develop inspiration, I turned to existing literature that has been well-esteemed by its readers to date. The work of W. Bruce Cameron, a bestselling author, perfectly exemplifies how to write from the dog’s point of view, embrace creativity, and respect the unique differences between humans and non-human animals.


“There are no bad dogs, Bobby, just bad people. They just need love.”

(Cameron, 2010, p. 34)

“A Dog’s Purpose” is the first in a series of tail-wagging good reads written by Cameron. Cameron strategically utilizes anthropomorphism to offer insight into the science behind dogs (i.e., their keen sense of smell, olfactory detection of hormonal changes in humans, etc.). Through a series of stories, readers become attuned to issues, such as shelter overcrowding and pet loss, and an open-minded audience can expect to think creatively about what might happen after their pet crosses the rainbow bridge.

Some might argue that “A Dog’s Purpose” is a hope-instilling read that offers insight into the life purposes of ourselves and our companion animals. Through the lived experiences of the dog, it becomes readily apparent that the purpose of the human-animal bond is to promote protection, companionship, safety, security, comfort, and beyond. Anyone with a keen eye for philosophy will quickly recognize that “A Dog’s Purpose” invites questions about one’s own purpose. For example, do we each have just one purpose? Does our purpose change as we navigate life? How do we discover our purpose?

“This was, I decided, my purpose as a dog, to comfort the boy whenever he needed me.”

(Cameron, 2010, p. 71)

As painted by Cameron, having and finding purpose isn’t just a unique human experience, it’s commonplace for our companion animals as well.

Posted in Doggone Good Reads!

Haatchi & Little B: The Inspiring Story of One Boy and His Dog”

“Haatchi & Little B,” written by Wendy Holden, is a twist of heartwarming and gut-wrenching.  Holden begins by introducing readers to the saddening story of Haatchi — an Anatolian Shephard who began his life misguided by humans.  Haatchi’s fate appears dismal.  That is, until he is introduced to Little B, a young boy with a rare genetic disorder called Schwartz Jampel Syndrome.  Little B experiences physical limitations that negatively impact his independence, comfortability, and sense of self.

hAATCHI 4
Image Credit: Google Images

While the story of Haatchi initially invites feelings of upset and fury, readers experience firsthand how a twist of fate, dependability, relatability, trust, and unconditional love brighten the future for both Haatchi & Little B.  This story is nothing short of remarkable and is a tail-wagging good read about the unbreakable bond between a boy and his dog!

Want more Haatchi & Little B?  Check out this video: 

 

Posted in Doggone Good Reads!

“Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, & The Triumph of Trust”

“Thunder Dog,” written by Michael Hingson and Susy Flory, is a remarkable, awe-inspiring story about the trust and triumph of a guide dog team.  Hingson, who is blind, writes about his guide dog, Roselle, who was by his side as he worked in the World Trade Center on 9/11.  Roselle can be described as a devoted, committed, and hardworking assistance dog who was trained by Guide Dogs for the Blind in San Rafael, California.  Together, Hingson and Roselle portray a human-canine relationship built on trust, understanding, and dependability.  

In “Thunder Dog,” Hingson provides a near minute-by minute recollection of his experiences during 9/11.  He depicts how the power of the human-animal bond and the trust in his partner, Roselle, ultimately led both of them to safety. Through this story, readers learn about blindness and the role that guide dogs play in mitigating this disability and promoting independence.  Hingson also provides a raw, insightful look into his life with blindness, while educating his readers about “Courtesy Rules for Blindness.”  He promotes person-first language and encourages readers to take interest in others for who they are, not for their disability.  This tail-wagging good read will certainly leave you on the edge of your seat and wondering how the bond between Hingson and Roselle could get stronger with each turn of the page! 

Click here to read more about Michael Hingson and his guide dog, Roselle! 

canva-rainbow,-rain,-nature,-weather,-umbrella,-colourful-MACZWVy2lSYThis post is dedicated to those who lost their lives due to the events of September 11, 2001, including Roselle who ultimately crossed the Rainbow Bridge in June 2011.  

Posted in Doggone Good Reads!

“The Divinity of Dogs: True Stories of Miracles Inspired By Man’s Best Friend”

“The Divinity of Dogs,” written by Jennifer Skiff, takes an inside look into the healing power of the human-animal bond. Through a series of short stories about our encounters with dogs, Skiff teaches readers how to lead a life with nonjudgment, empathy, kindness, dependability, and love. Readers can expect to find stories about the role of assistance dogs in promoting independence, adoption of shelter dogs, and the therapeutic role of dogs on healing our mental and physical ailments. Each chapter in this tail-wagging good read contains emotional firsthand accounts of how dogs and their human counterparts ultimately save one another physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Emphasis should be placed on the emotional aspect of this book as many of the chapters are a reflection of the heroic stories of beloved pets who have since crossed the rainbow bridge. The “Divinity of Dogs” is a true testament to the phrase “Who rescued who?” and is a tail-wagging good read for dog lovers everywhere!

This post is dedicated to those who (thanks to their beloved pets) know what it is like to love and be loved.