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The season for giving, reflection, thanks and celebration is upon us, and you’ll find these themes reflected in many of the pieces selected for this issue. In “Gratitude,” the author muses on dog-inspired wonderment, while in “Guiding Miss Ellie,” lessons are learned in the course of raising a guide dog puppy; in the endpiece, a dog’s happiness is placed above his family’s preference. We go outdoors to the ski slopes with the canine heroes of winter, those intrepid rescue dogs who leap into action during avalanche season. Our cover dog, Riley, is also a hardworking wonder dog—assisting in rehabilitating exotic wildlife, tending to a young family and doing therapy work “on the side.” In the realm of science, Jane Brackman explains recent research into the genetic connections between physical traits and behavior, while Martha Connors investigates wolf-dog hybrids. And if you’re thinking about a new career and have an itch to train dogs for a living, we have the inside scoop on how to get started. If you are one of the millions who enjoyed last holiday’s YouTube sensation showing a group of amazingly well-trained dogs busy with holiday decorating, we have the trainer behind that as an exclusive interview!
We have DIY fun for the whole family! Make one-of-a-kind gifts from papier-maché or pebbles! Or whip up treats from holiday leftovers. Plus don’t miss our newest charming book, Photobooth Dogs—ideal for holiday gift giving!
The Visit: My dog tried to pee on Baby Jesus. By Tammy Tanner
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