dog who could flyThe Dog Who Could Fly is the true account of a German shepherd who was adopted by the Royal Air Force during World War II, joined in flight missions, and survived everything from crash-landings to parachute bailouts – ultimately saving the life of his owner and dearest friend.

In the winter of 1939 in the cold snow of no-man’s-land, two loners met and began an extraordinary journey that would turn them into lifelong friends. One was an orphaned puppy, abandoned by his owners as they fled Nazi forces. The other was a different kind of lost soul – a Czech airman bound for the Royal Air Force and the country that he would come to call home. Airman Robert Bozdech stumbled across the tiny German shepherd – whom he named Ant – after being shot down on a daring mission over enemy lines. Unable to desert his charge, Robert hid Ant inside his jacket as he escaped. In the months that followed the pair would save each other’s lives countless times as they flew together with Bomber Command. And though Ant was eventually grounded due to injury, he refused to abandon his duty, waiting patiently beside the runway for his master’s return from every sortie, and refusing food and sleep until they were reunited. By the end of the war Robert and Ant had become British war heroes, and Ant was justly awarded the Dickin Medal, the “Animal VC.”

With beautiful vintage black-and-white photos of Robert and Ant, The Dog Who Could Fly is a deeply moving story of loyalty in the face of adversity and the unshakable bond between a man and his best friend. (description from publisher)

off the leashOff the Leash is about the strange, wonderful, neurotic, and eccentric dog people who gather daily at Amory Park, overlooking Boston. And it’s about Matthew Gilbert’s transformation from dedicated homebody to joyful member of the dog park club: an oddball group of dog people with fur on their jackets and biscuits in their pockets.

Gilbert, the TV critic at the Boston Globe, describes his reluctant journey into the park subculture, as the first-time dog owner of a yellow lab named Toby. Like so many Americans right now, he has been steeped in the virtual, digital world. At the park, though, amid the chaotic energy of dogs and people gathered in packs, he is unprotected by the screen and forced to let go. The dogs go off-leash, and so do the people. There is something eternal and deeply satisfying about both the group experience at the park and the simple pleasure of playing fetch with one’s canine companion in a large, green, open space.

A charmingly written narrative that will appeal to anyone who has ever enjoyed watching a puppy scamper through a park, Off the Leash is a paean to dog lovers and their pets everywhere. (description from publisher)

travels with caseyA moody Labrador and his insecure human take a funny, touching cross-country RV trip into the heart of America’s relationship with dogs.

“I don’t think my dog likes me very much,” New York Times Magazine writer Benoit Denizet-Lewis confesses at the beginning of his journey with his nine-year-old Labrador-mix, Casey. Over the next four months, thirty-two states, and 13,000 miles in a rented motor home, Denizet-Lewis and his canine companion attempt to pay tribute to the most powerful interspecies bond there is, in the country with the highest rate of dog ownership in the world. On the way, Denizet-Lewis-known for his deeply reported dispatches from far corners of American life – meets an irresistible cast of dogs and dog-obsessed humans. Denizet-Lewis and Casey hang out with wolf-dogs in Appalachia, search with a dedicated rescuer of stray dogs in Missouri, spend a full day at a kooky dog park in Manhattan, get pulled over by a K9 cop in Missouri, and visit “Dog Whisperer” Cesar Millan in California. And then there are the pet psychics, dog-wielding hitchhikers, and two nosy women who took their neighbor to court for allegedly failing to pick up her dog’s poop.

Travels With Casey is a delightfully idiosyncratic blend of memoir and travelogue coupled with an exploration of a dog-loving America. What does our relationship to our dogs tell us about ourselves and our values? Denizet-Lewis explores those questions-and his own canine-related curiosities and insecurities during his unforgettable road trip through our dog-loving nation. (description from publisher)

suspectScott and Maggie are new partners in the LAPD but they have a lot more than that in common – both are a mess after barely surviving brutal attacks that left their former partners dead, both suffer from severe PTSD and both are close to unfit for duty. The fact that Scott is a human and Maggie is a dog does not change that fact that they are just what the other needs in Suspect by Robert Crais.

Officer Scott James has just returned to work, still physically recovering from gunshot wounds that have forced him to give up his goal of joining the elite SWAT squad. He is haunted by memories of the night of the attack, when masked gunmen launched a surprise attack on a passing car, then turned on Scott and his partner when they tried to stop them. The cries of his dying partner calling for him as he lay helpless as his own life nearly bled out, rerun in his dreams every night. Desperate to find justice for his partner, he refuses a medical discharge and finds a position in the K-9 Unit where, he believes, he won’t have to worry letting down a partner again.

Maggie has survived three tours of Iran and Afghanistan, saving hundreds of grunts with her IED sniffing talent until a suicide bomber kills her handler and snipers nearly kill her when she refuses to stop guarding his body; the Marines are only able to drag her away by throwing a jacket over her and manhandling her into the rescuing helicopter. No longer able to serve in the military and wary and suspicious of everyone, the LAPD may be Maggie’s last chance.

Award-winning author Robert Crais  (best known for his Elvis Cole mysteries) is a master storyteller, showing how these two damaged beings fight back and help and learn from each other using language that is lean yet evocative – you can feel the heat of Los Angeles, the terror of Scott’s panic attacks, Maggie’s joy as she accepts Scott. The information about the training and deployment of police and military dogs is fascinating but never overwhelms the story and the final chapters, where Scott and Maggie work together to bring Scott’s attacker’s to justice, are tense and action-packed.

genius of dogsBrian Hare, dog researcher, evolutionary anthropologist, and founder of the Duke Canine Cognition Center offers revolutionary new insights into dog intelligence and the interior lives of our smartest pets in The Genius of Dogs.

In the past decade, we have learned more about how dogs think than in the last century. Breakthroughs in cognitive science have proven dogs have a kind of genius for getting along with people that is unique in the animal kingdom. Brian Hare’s stunning discovery is that when dogs domesticated themselves as early as 40,000 years ago they became far more like human infants than their wolf ancestors. Domestication gave dogs a whole new kind of social intelligence. This finding will change the way we think about dogs and dog training – indeed, the revolution has already begun. Hare’s seminal research has led him to work with every kind of dog from the tiniest shelter puppy to the exotic New Guinea singing dog, from his own childhood dog, Oreo, to the most fashionable schnoodle.

The Genius of Dogs is nothing less than the definitive dog book of our time by the researcher who started a revolution. (description from publisher)

With his big blue eyes and soulful expression, George was the irresistible runt of the litter. But Dave and Christie Nasser’s “baby” ended up being almost five feet tall, seven feet long, and 245 pounds. Eager to play, and boisterous to the point of causing chaos, this big Great Dane was scared of water, scared of dogs a fraction of his size and, most of all, scared of being alone.

Giant George is the charming story of how this precocious puppy won Dave and Christie’s hearts and along the way became a doggie superstar. In 2010, George was named by Guinness World Records as the Tallest Dog in the World-ever. He appeared on Oprah, and even has his own global fan club. But to Dave and Christie, this extraordinary animal is still their beloved pet, the one who has made them laugh, made them cry, and continues to make them incredibly happy. (provided by publisher)

Determined to provide only the best for our patrons, we search far and wide for products and services that will make your life easier, smarter, better. In light of these goals, the Davenport Public Library is pleased to announce the addition of a new format now available for check-out! Introducing – DogAways™!

DogAways™ is a fun and unique program that allows you to check out a dog. Go for a walk! Snuggle on the sofa while you watch a DVD! Chase a ball together! DogAways™ dogs will improve your health, increase your finances and help with the laundry. Dogs come in a variety of sizes – small (dachshunds, toy poodles), medium (Jack Russell  terriers, beagles) and large (labradors, Great Danes) – and can be reserved just like a book! Each dog is trained to be smarter than you. Health certificates and medical records are on file and available for viewing.

Each dog comes with its own Care Pack containing dog care tips, leash, brush, tennis ball or frisbee, 3-day supply of food, treats and multiple poop bags. Dogs are trained to bite you if you mistreat them; these dogs are picky about care so you may wish to have your doctor’s or emergency care provider’s phone number handy (but don’t expect any sympathy from us if you do get bitten). DogAways™ check out for three days with one renewal. Overdue fees for the late return of a dog is $30 a day, plus the dog will bite you so don’t be late!

The library is not responsible for any damages or personal injuries.

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Haha! Of course we’re not going to be lending out dogs from the library! April Fool! However, it’s not completely crazy – Yale Law Library lends out Monty, a “certified library therapy” dog to aid in stress reduction during finals week  (Monty can be checked out for 30 minute sessions) Therapy dogs have been used at other universities including Tufts, Oberlin College and UC Santa Barbara and the role of pets as stress-reducing has long been acknowledged. After all, anyone can use a warm, furry, non-judgemental friend!

 

This book is a lovely mix of what a romantic comedy should be – light and funny with some undertones of seriousness. Stay by Allie Larkin will make you laugh (out loud), think about some of the big issues in life (without sending you into a tailspin) and wrap it all up with a happy ending.

Savannah (“Van”) Leone has long been in love with her college pal Peter, but he falls for Van’s best friend Janie instead. Van is forced to stand by (as the Maid of Honor) and watch them get married, leaving her to her lonely life. In a fit of self-pity, she gets drunk while watching a marathon of Rin Tin Tin movies and gets it into her head that she needs a German Shepherd that will save her and always be with her. A little drunk-googling soon finds her the perfect puppy and before she can sober up, she’s bought a dog.

Imagine Van’s surprise when the expected cute little puppy turns out to be a huge, nearly full-grown, black, long-haired beast. Who only understands Slovakian commands. And takes over half the bed in no time flat. At first Van is terrified, but Joe (as she renames him) worms his way into her heart almost as quickly as the bed and he turns out to be exactly what she needs – someone who sticks with her no matter what, who makes life more interesting and a lot more fun, someone who will love her back. (Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Joe’s new vet is super gorgeous and available!)

The romance here is pretty predictable – girl-has-heart-broken, girl-meets-cute-guy, girl-and-cute-guy-have-issues, girl-and-cute-guy-overcome-issues, happy-ending. But the characters are likeable and realistic with messy, imperfect lives who try hard to be better. Van’s continuing struggle with her grief over her Mother’s death and her search for her own “family” adds depth and complexity.  The real charm of the book though is Joe with his cheerful personality and big heart. And in no time,  just like Van, you’ll fall in love with Joe too.

On his way to dinner with his wife Emily where he intends to ask her for a divorce, Sandy Portman – wealthy, sophisticated, self-centered – is hit by a car and dies. Furious that someone as important as himself should die so young, he makes a deal with the angel sent to retrieve him – a second chance to make things right. The only string attached? He’s coming back as a dog. An old, smelly, not-very-attractive dog to be exact.

Emily and Einstein by Linda Francis Lee is a charming story with both laughs and heartbreak. Now known as Einstein (and as a dog) Sandy struggles to come to terms with who he was as a man. Emily learns to become her own person, not defined by her Mother or sister or husband and to move on with her life. Einstein is very funny and sarcastic (he calls the angel that’s assigned to him “old man”) and Emily’s struggles are realistic. Some might label this as “chick lit”, but the issues are deeper and have more resonance than merely “getting the guy”. This is a love story on several levels, and also a story of forgiveness both of the people in your life and of yourself.  You’ll cheer for both Emily and Einstein, because everyone deserves a second chance.

This book is written by a dog.  Granted, a very special dog —  a golden retriever named Trixie.  And even though Trixie passed away in 2007, she is still, remarkably, writing books.  Of course, it probably helps that she was owned by bestselling author Dean Koontz, who may still have a little something to do with her success.   In fact, Koontz states that the Trixie  page on his website is one of the most visited features.

Trixie has inspired several books, including A Big Little Life, in which Koontz wrote about his relationship with his beloved pet.  But she’s also inspired some new children’s books, such as I Trixie, Who Is Dog , the rights to which have recently been purchased in order to create a new family comedy show.  But her speciality is definitely books such as Life is Good or Bliss to You, which are written in dog-speak, as is if Trixie is narrating the story.  Though for the most part, this is utterly charming, I’ll warn any ex-English teachers out there (myself included) that dogs apparently do not always use correct syntax.  Still, the book is warm, funny, inspirational and short –you can easily find bliss in one short sitting — making it an ideal gift for dog-lovers come Christmas time.

One other reason to support these books:  since Trixie originally served as a Canine Companions for Independence (before she went to live with Dean and Gerda) all royalties are donated to this organization.