The Soldier’s Dog – Perfect Picture Book

The Soldier’s Dog

Doreen Norberg,  Author and Illustrator

Xlibris Corporation, Fiction, 2010

Suitable for:  Ages 4 and up

Themes: Therapy Dogs, Friendship, Healing

Opening/Synopsis“Otis was a little Pug puppy who lived in a place called the Puppy Patch.  On day, the lady who took care of Otis had a long talk with him.  She told him, “Otis, I have an important mission for you.  There is a young soldier a long way from here who is in need of a friend.  This soldier’s mother has chosen you to help her son.”  This is a story about a young soldier who returns from war and has difficulty adjusting to everyday life.  Otis travels on a plane almost 2,000 miles away from home.  The soldier and Otis develop a warm and strong bond.  The soldier needs Otis as much as Otis needs the love and friendship of the soldier.  He bought Otis a camouflage collar, to match his own uniform.  One day the soldier begins to smile again.

Why I like this story:  Animals have a healing impact on individuals.  They provide emotional support and healing when other approaches don’t work.    It is a reminder to us how important and beneficial an animal relationship can be to a person who has been damaged, particularly by war.  The author has done a lovely job of telling this story.  Her  illustrations a colorful and bold.  She has donated a part of the proceeds of this book to The Good Dog Foundation, where dogs are trained to help humans heal.

Resources:  The Good Dog Foundation suggests that you have your child read to dogs.  It’s a popular activity in the organization.  It helps children with their reading skills, boosts their self-esteem and teaches them how to interact in a calm way with dogs.

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