Just finished City Dog by Alison Pace. This was a fun read, not heavy, but entertaining. The official blurb doesn't do it justice:
From the author of Pug Hill and If Andy Warhol Had a Girlfriend comes a charming and original exploration of one woman's search for happiness, and the cast of characters - real and imagined - who help her find it.
After her divorce, Amy Dodge thought she'd finally write the next Great American Novel. Instead she's now the author of a bestselling children's book series, Run, Carlie, Run! starring her adorable and spirited West Highland white terrier, Carlie, and a dashing (but fictional) Scottish explorer, Robert Maguire. Though when Carlie is offered the starring role in her own television show about activities for urban canines, and Robert Maguire begins to take on a life of his own, Amy's world takes a turn toward the surreal.
As Amy finds herself getting cropped out of Carlie's many photo opportunities and unable to get the image of Robert Maguire out of her head, the city she once loved begins to lose its appeal. But just when she starts thinking that it's a dog's life after all, she figures out a way to make everything change. And while life in New York is not always a walk in the park, it just might take Amy and Carlie to exactly where they need to be...
This is an original dog-lover's story of burn-out, loneliness, hope, honesty and love told from the vantage points of the different characters.
CITY DOG is a whimsical, fanciful story presented from the points of view of an on-the-verge-of-jaded New York City writer, one of her fictional children's storybook characters, and her dog. Pace writes with wit, confidence, a delightful and gentle voice, and a keen eye that misses nothing. - Lee Harrington, best-selling author of Rex and the City
If you like chick lit and even if you don't, Super Cool Pets recommends this book. City Dog will be released September 2.
1. Wild Kitty (parody Wild Rover)
2. A Cat Named Rover (parody Gypsy Rover)
3. The Mining Ship the Red Dwarf (parody Bonnie Ship the Diamond)
4. When Kitty Eyes Are Smiling (parody When Irish Eyes Are Smiling)
5. Lord of the Pounce (parody Lord of the Dance)
6. I'll Tell My Cat (parody I'll Tell My Ma)
7. The Cat Came Back... The Cat's Perspective
8. Black Is the Color (of My Cat's Fur)
9. Cats Chasing Butterflies
10. The Demented Cat Game (parody Patriot Game)
11. Black Kitty Paw (parody Black Velvet Band)
12. Catnipping Green (parody Fiddler's Green)
13. The Old Grey Cat
14. Furagone's Wake (parody Finnegan's Wake)
15. Jasper Tabby Kitty Cat-y (parody The Barnyards of Delgaty)
Merle's Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote was released in paperback this past April and published originally in hardcover in 2007. We featured it in last year's Holiday Book Gift Guide and have had it in the review pipeline here at Super Cool Pets for awhile. This book receives a 5-star rating at Amazon through 153 reviews, easily understandable. If you haven't read this book, read it and give it as a gift to every dog lover you know. As the book ends, you may find this dog and his owner unforgettable.
Lots of us have lived with dogs for many many years. There is always room to improve our interactions with the animals who share our lives. Merle's Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog does not disappoint as to "lessons". Author Ted Kerasote's account of his conversations and life with his dog Merle reveal a loving insight into dog psychology we have never before encountered.
Mr. Kerasote regards the dog-human relationship as one between partners--he does not view his dog as a subordinate or himself as a pack leader. Let the dog be a dog.
Since dogs are wolves--genetically and psychologically--they, too, want some say in conducting their lives as they grow up. They want some authentic freedoms while also listening to those who are their elders, their human partners. Keeping one's dog a perpetual child and quashing this natural maturation process by not giving the dog some leeway in conducting its own affairs--especially providing it off-leash time in which to socialize with other dogs--often leads to what this heavy-handed approach does in child rearing: the dog acts out or becomes a yes-dog, obeying mindlessly and not realizing its full mental capabilities.
The narrative of Mr Kerasote's almost 14 years with Merle is sprinkled with researched information about canine genealogy and the evolution of human-dog interaction. And yes, you will need a full box of tissues, especially if your own dog is lying nearby.
After you throw away the empty tissue box, in case you just can't let go, check out Merle's Life in Photos.
New book releases at Amazon in the past few weeks. Mainly dogs at this time, though new cat books are in the pipeline to be released soon.
The Well-Adjusted Dog: Dr. Dodman's Seven Steps to Lifelong Health and Happiness for Your Best Friend
by Nicholas H. Dodman
Publication Date: July 9, 2008
From a world-renowned animal behaviorist and leading authority in the veterinary field comes this comprehensive, holistic seven-step approach to caring for your adult dog, including health, behavior, and environment. In this essential new book, Dodman draws on some twenty-five years of clinical experience to bring together the art--and science--of dog ownership.
Food Pets Die For: Shocking Facts About Pet Food
by Ann N. Martin
Publication Date: July 23, 2008
The commercial pet food industry has a secret to hide -- and Ann Martin wants to make sure you know it. Her research reveals some startling facts: that the pet food industry conducts animal testing in order to improve their product, and includes euthanized cats and dogs in the mix to heighten protein content. In this revised and updated edition, Martin continues to explore the shocking processes by which commercial pet foods are produced. She offers alternative recipes for feeding pets, nutritional advice, and an exploration of "Pet Peeves," in which she explores several scams aimed at pet owners.
Play With Your Dog (Dogwise Training Manual)
by Pat Miller (Author)
Publication Date: July 2008
In her newest book, Pat Miller explores the role and benefits of play between you and your dog - and between dogs. Play behaviors have important learning and health benefits that help dogs become well-adjusted members of both their canine and human families. Pat includes dozens of game ideas collected from trainers all over the country you can try out with your dog(s).
A Dog Who's Always Welcome: Assistance and Therapy Dog Trainers Teach You How to Socialize and Train Your Companion Dog
by Lorie Long
Publication Date: July 21, 2008
If you're like most dog owners, you want a trustworthy companion you can take on family vacations, to ball games, on hikes, and to cafes and festivals. You want your dog to behave when you have guests, stay peacefully at hotels, ride calmly in elevators, and maintain proper doggie decorum in all kinds of situations.Chances are, you've watched and admired assistance and therapy dogs who are attentive to their owners' needs no matter what. This book taps into the secrets of assistance and therapy dog trainers and shows you how to use focused foundation socialization training to make sure your dog is well behaved--even in unfamiliar environments loaded with distractions and temptations.
If you are finding that you are spending a nice chunk of your hard-earned dollars on pet care, you are not alone. According to the Dallas Morning News:
...owners are expected to spend a record $43 billion on their pets this year, $2 billion more than last year, according to a survey by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association.
About 67 percent of U.S. households own a pet, and chances are they spend half their pet costs on vet visits and over-the-counter medicine, the survey said.
Whereas a new toy for our pets may be optional, medical care is a necessity and it isn't getting any cheaper. The Dallas News article recommends pet insurance, as does WP's Taming Costly Vet Bills:
If your cat comes down with pneumonia, the bill could run $1,900. Cancer therapy for a dog averages nearly $3,600. James Busby, veterinarian and author of How to Afford Veterinary Care Without Mortgaging the Kids recommends that pet owners ask upfront about all treatment options and costs, including for routine care. For example, many vets vaccinate dogs every year. But according to an American Animal Hospital Association study, adult dogs need most shots only once every three years.
The typical insurance premium for a dog is about $40 per month -- that's $5,280 if a dog lives 11 years, the average canine life span in the United States. Policies usually cover illness and accidents, although some insurers provide only accident protection. A few policies cover preventive care, such as regular checkups and vaccines.
Payouts depend on the insurer, but it's common for companies to foot 80 percent of the bill. To compare the benefits, co-payments and deductibles of major pet insurers, go to http://www.petinsurancereview.com.
New book releases at Amazon in the past few weeks:
Pawprints of Katrina: Pets Saved and Lessons Learned
by Cathy Scott
Publication Date: June 16, 2008
includes nearly 200 heroic rescues, heartwarming reunions, and stories of selfless efforts of strangers brought together by a disaster to save animals at the Best Friends Animal Society triage center because their owners were unable to. The stories and photos included in this book will bring the experience of pet victims to life for the reader.
A Soldier's Best Friend: Scout Dogs and Their Handlers in the Vietnam War
by John C Burnam
Publication Date: July 1, 2008
Burnam is a man with a mission: to garner recognition for the 4,000 dogs and their 10,000 or so handlers who served in the Vietnam War. Burnam was one of the latter; his instructive book is a combination war memoir, a history of the use of American war dog teams in Vietnam and a plea for the construction of a National War Dog Memorial in Washington, D.C.