Article contributed by Rianne Jules
There’s no denying that dogs are some of the best companions to have. The National Pet Owners Surveys even reports that 90.5 million Americans households own at least one dog. That’s not really a surprise, as dogs bring so much joy and affection into one’s life.
In fact, renowned dog trainer Kevin Behan explored the positive impact that dogs have on our lives in his book, ‘Your Dog is Your Mirror’. He explains that dogs mirror their human’s emotions, giving the latter the chance to understand themselves in the process. However, this also means that it’s quite easy for dog owners to get attached to their dogs, so dogs often leave a huge impact on their human’s life—inspiring a lot of their stories to be published.
If you’re a dog owner who’s looking for their next read, this list of the best dog memoirs around is for you.
What is a Dog?
Like Behan, Chloe Shaw writes a warm-hearted and philosophical reflection on the companionship that dogs provide in ‘What is a Dog’. Following the death of their household pet, Booker, Shaw dealt with grief by isolating herself with her other dogs Safari and Otter. There, she began to muse about how canine friends had helped her cope with life’s ordeals. She reminisces about Agatha 2, the Afghan hound and her first pet, who kept her company in an otherwise emotionally-detached household, filling the gap created by her parents’ lack of emotional connection.
While she had grown used to escaping the difficulties of her life by turning to the companionship she had with her dogs, it was also through them that she learned to accept her feelings just as her dogs accepted hers. Any dog owner can relate to this profound text on how pets can be both a source of comfort and growth.
Dog Years: A Memoir
In ‘Dog Years: A Memoir’, Mark Doty remembers how his dogs Beau and Arden were beacons of light when the family was going through dark times. Just as Shaw’s dogs helped her cope with loss, Beau and Arden served as the primary life force and source of strength for Doty and his partner who was dying from AIDS. This is because having dogs around, like Doty and Shaw, helps improve one’s state of mind, and could even help them through grief according to research by Michigan State University.
For anyone who has ever had to grieve with the help of their canine friends, ‘Dog Years’ is a memorable and relatable read.
Molly: The True Story of the Amazing Dog Who Rescues Cats
On the lighter end of this particular reading list is an inspiring story by Colin Butcher about the brilliance of Molly the Cocker Spaniel, one half of the Pet Detective Agency. The book follows Molly’s adventures: from her years of training with the help of Medical Detection Dogs professionals to memorizing the feline signature scent in order to look for missing cats with the author of the book. There were challenges too—like that one time when she got bitten by a snake. But the heart-warming and energetic storytelling will surely appease dog-lovers with adventurous souls.
There’s wisdom in the saying that a dog is a man’s best friend. After all, your dog will never leave your side, no matter what adversity life throws at you.
This post was last updated at June 6, 2023 11:30