Friday, May 14, 2010

Saving Gracie - by Carol Bradley

Described as "a compelling true story of one dog's rescue from a Pennsylvania puppy mill", how could I resist that title?  The book, Saving Gracie - How One Dog Escaped the Shadowy World of American Puppy Mills, by Carol Bradley offers 229 pages of eye-opening information on puppy mill dogs, those who run them, and those who try to shut them down.

The preface states, "Saving Gracie traces this resilient dog's journey out of a puppy mill and tell stories of the people who helped her along the way."  Although only a small part of the book, I enjoyed reading about Gracie, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and her efforts to become a family dog.  The person who adopted her was not an expert dog person and did not know much about puppy mills - a lot like me.  The reader learns along the way about the mentality of breeders and the laws and even dog organizations that perpetuate the existence of dogs used as breeding stock in terrible conditions.

The Cavalier, Gracie, is rescued from a former AKC dog show winner / breeder along with 332 dogs.  The book includes the challenges a few of the other adopters faced in bringing puppy mill dogs into their homes.  It described behaviors I saw in my Gracie.

In the final chapter, "Two Lives Changed", Gracie's owner has become an advocate for puppy mill dogs and my favorite part states, "Blind, needy, now nine years old, Gracie wasn't destined for greatness.  She would never capture the top prize at Westminster or save a child who had fallen down a well.  Nevertheless, she had accomplished something. She had survived a puppy mill.  She had learned to trust in people, to love, and be loved.  And in her own humble way, she had helped focus attention on the plight of hundreds of thousands of dogs like her."  This book was a page-turner for me.

View this book at Barnes and Noble

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