From Marley and Me to Temple Grandin’s groundbreaking books to Cesar Millan’s television show, America’s many millions of pet owners eagerly seek new insights into animal behavior, and one of the most popular sources of compelling stories and practical advice is DogTown, the National Geographic Channel’s latest hit show.
A national rescue organization with more than 200,000 members, DogTown is the area where dogs live at the nation’s largest companion animal sanctuary run by Best Friends Animal Society. This informative, inspiring book presents representative stories of dogs considered unadoptable by other shelters. They come from many backgrounds: some were abandoned; some prowled the streets as strays; others suffer from mysterious illnesses, serious injuries, or antisocial behaviors that discourage potential adopters. But good fortune led them to Best Friends and the dedicated people devoted to helping them recover and find welcoming homes.
These compelling, winningly illustrated true stories, each uniquely moving and inspirational, draw upon the experience of veterinarians, trainers, and volunteers to probe a range of tough, touching cases that evoke both the joy and the occasional but inevitable heartbreak that accompanies this work. Each chapter follows a dog from the first day at Dogtown until he ultimately finds (or doesn’t find) a permanent new home, focusing both on the relationship between the dog and the Dogtown staff and on the latest discoveries about animal health and behavior. We learn how dogs process information, how trauma affects their behavior, and how people can help them overcome their problems. In the end, we come to see that there are no "bad dogs" and that with patience, care, and compassion, people can help dogs to heal.
About the Author
Stefan Bechtel is the author of two previous books, and with Laurence Stains he co-authored Sex: A Man's Guide. Bechtel is also a former senior editor of Prevention magazine, and a founding editor of Men's Health. He has had pieces published in such magazines as Esquire and Reader's Digest. He lives with his wife and children in Charlottesville, Virginia.