* Prices may differ from that shown
Angel Dogs: When best friends become heroes - Allen & Linda Anderson
Angel Dogs: When best friends become heroes is a paperback book written by Allen & Linda Anderson. I bought this book in September 2010 in WH Smiths at East Midlands airport. I bought it mainly because of the cute dog on the front, but also beacuse I love reading anything about dogs, especially when it is true life stories and heartwarming tales of a dogs commitment to their owners, and that is exactly what this book is about.
Rather than being a book about one particular dog and the tale of how that dog has been a hero and shown their ever-lasting love for their owner Angel Dogs actually contains 34 seperate stories of different dogs and how in their own little ways they have become heros to their owners. By heros I dont mean (and the book doesnt mean) the Lassie style hero of jumping into a river and pulling out the drowning child or running miles and miles to get help for someone trapped down a mine, no, this is not the kind of hero dog featured in this book, the hero dog in this book is defined by a personal bond between dog and owner or the dog and its loyalties.
The book is split up into 5 chapeters. Each chapter contains 5 or 6 stories of how dogs have helped, insipred or simply just been there when their owners needed them most, the individual stories have been told by their respective owners and most of them also contain a cute picture of the dog featured. A some of the stories are funny, but most of them are heartwarming and quite a large number of them brought a tear to my eye!
I wont go into too much detail over the stories as this would spoil the book for you, but I will briefly sum up my personal favourites...
Oliver the abandoned shih-tzu was found covered in ice and freezing at the side of a road, he was taken home by a loving lady and repaying her kindness he shows loyalty and unconditional love for her and her terminaly ill husband. The story of Oliver shows how a little kindness that was given to this tiny dog was repayed by a lot of love and happiness given to a dying man in his hour of need. This is one of the tales that brought a tear to my eye.
Another of my favourites is the story of Sierra the dog who helped her owner overcome her constant worrying of 'What if' by simply being herself and enjoying the freedom that dogs love, this story tells the tale of how this dogs energy and love for life taught her owner to see that life is too short for worries and 'what if's' and that she should live more for the moment and enjoy her life to the maximum while she can.
At the end of each chapter there is a small section called 'Ask Taylor'. Taylor is a Golden Retriever who is like the Agony Aunt of the book. The Ask Taylor pages contain a letter from a dog owner asking questions about their dogs behaviour or if their dog has passed away they are asking if the dog is ok and happy. I find this part of the book to be a little random, but at the same time the letters to Taylor do put a smile on my face.
There is a very spiritual side to the book with most stories having a 'Meditation' moment at the end of them. The meditation moment asks you thought provoking questions to make you take a moment to think about whether a dog has ever done something unexpected with or for you and why they might of done this. To me personally I have tended to skip the meditation part as I know I will either go too much into thought and become hooked on the spiritual side of dogs, or if I dont do this I will spend too much time watching my dog to see if she is acting strangely. I'm not too sure how much I believe in the spiritual side of anything really so I dont really know how to take these sections in the book. I think they are a nice addition if this is your type of thing though.
I found this book to be a very interesting and heartwarming read, I did find that I couldnt read it for longer periods of time as the book contains so many stories of insiration and positive yet tear jerking stories and I can only handle so many tears from a book! Rather than read this book all at once I read a few stories at a time and then returned to the book each week to read some more.
All of the stories you will read in the book are entirely true and I will provide you with the 'box of tissues needed' warning right now as the book fails to inform you of this!
Angel Dogs was first published in 2005 and is printed by Penguin. I bought my copy of Angel Dogs in WH Smiths at East Midlands Airport for £6.99. It is currently available on Amazon for around £5.49 but I'm sure you will find a copy on eBay for less. I would defiantly recommend Angel Dogs, but as I said... make sure you have that box of tissues ready! ;)
A highly recommended and enjoyable read.
Thanks for reading! :)