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Dog's Life: Work of Dogs
Guest Editorial: Dogs Redeem Us
Prison pup programs do more than produce well-trained service dogs
I am a prisoner at the California Institution for Women in Chino, where I have now been for 25 years. It is a hard and often cold world. On rare occasions, I would see dogs outside the fence, perhaps a stray or one belonging to one of the many dairies surrounding the prison. These sightings brought me both sadness and joy. How I longed to touch and be touched by these creatures, a joy that lived...
Dog's Life: DIY
Handmade Window Books
The countdown to the holidays begins—celebrate the season (and astonish your friends!) by creating your own limited editions. With an assortment of paper and pictures and a couple of tools, you can make an instant book—or a dozen instant books, since they’re one-sided and, thanks to copy machines, easy to duplicate. This version, with its Advent calendar–like windows, lends itself to all sorts of...
Good Dog: Activities & Sports
The Politics of Creating a Dog Park
Round two in the urban debate
This is a follow-up article to our political primer on dog park campaigning. We hope that you found some of the information helpful and that you are now ready to sit down with town planners and design that perfect dog park. Let’s start by suggesting a different term for dog park. We know it’s an easy term to use, but it often evokes irate comments like: “What do you mean you want to spend my...
Dog's Life: Lifestyle
Dogs on Ice
Lessons learned from a near-disaster
One crisp winter day, my friend Kate and I went walking on nearby farm land. The two of us had taken this walk many times over the years; that day, we had eight dogs with us. The four dogs in my charge were all “grand-dogs,” as were three of the four accompanying Kate. After about an hour in the brisk, 20-degree air, we headed back to our cars. As we neared one of the farm’s three ice-covered...
Dog Years
HarperCollins, 207 pp., 2007; $23.95
Dog Years By Mark Doty Reviewed by Andrea Walker Mark Doty is a critically acclaimed poet whose verses have appeared frequently in this magazine. Now he has turned to nonfiction to chronicle the impact that two Retrievers, one black and one golden, have had on his life. Arden is the gentle and affectionate black Retriever puppy Doty adopts from an animal shelter in Vermont. Beau is the more...
Dog's Life: Lifestyle
Dogs in Weddings
Tips on sharing that most special day
When my fiancé Blair and I started courting, the event that sealed the deal for me was when he met Ernest. Blair was sitting on the stoop of my apartment building, I opened the front gate, and Ernest pretty much bounded into Blair’s welcoming arms. Ernest is my—now our—12-years-young Lab/Beagle mix. A year later, Blair proposed while we were walking Ernest in Riverside Park. Ernest has been there...
Dog's Life: Work of Dogs
“Reading” Dogs Help Children Learn
By lending an ear at story time
Reading is indeed fundamental, but for many, acquiring the skill is daunting. Fortunately, thanks to some innovative programs and cooperative dogs, the challenge is getting easier to meet. Across the nation, dogs are lending their ears, and thousands of children who need extra help with reading and interpersonal communication couldn’t be happier. Imagine this scene, described by Brooklyn’s Good...
Dog's Life: Lifestyle
Foreclosed but Not Forgotten
Groups help pets in need
Making a serious problem worse, record housing foreclosures are escalating the nation’s already sizable numbers of homeless and abandoned pets. Thankfully, some enterprising organizations and individuals are stepping up to lessen the burden on individuals as well as shelters. For example, the not-for-profit No Paws Left Behind was created specifically to be the “voice” of pets affected by...
Dog's Life: Work of Dogs
Truffle Dogs
Wanted: A dog who can keep a secret … and a nose to the ground.
If a truffle grows in the forest and no one can smell it, is it really there? That’s what Charles Lefevre, a professional mycologist and grower of “truffle trees,” has been asking himself lately. Since 2001, his company, New World Truffieres, has been supplying seedlings to aspiring truffle farmers across the United States and Canada. Any time now, the trees Lefevre’s customers have purchased...
Dog's Life: Lifestyle
Water Collies
Lucky dogs frolic in a water wonderland designed just for them
It was June 1989, and we had found our dream home: one and a half acres of grass and woods for the dogs to enjoy and some potentially nice areas for my own gardening pleasure. Privacy, so we could have as many dogs as we liked. Perfect! Oh, and the house was nice, too, all on one level, no stairs—we could grow old there. But it included a swimming pool, something we weren’t terribly excited about...

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