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Dogs Who Found Me: What I've Learned From Pets Who Were Left Behind Paperback – March 1, 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Lyons Press (March 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592287492
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592287499
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (130 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

After Foster adopts his first dog, Brando, from a shelter, he can't help noticing an alarming number of stray dogs, which he had never noticed before. Once he starts looking for them, he finds strays everywhere: on the side of the road, at the dog park, at gas stations and stuck in drainage grates. But this book isn't about Foster as much as it's about his dogs, who help him through 9/11 (he lived in Manhattan then), a heart condition that lands him in the hospital and the deaths of two good friends. Foster's relationships with the three dogs in his life aren't a one-way street, though: when one dog gets a urinary infection every time Foster leaves, Foster realizes she "was trying to hold everything in until I returned." As if channeling the frank and fundamental nature of dogs, Foster's sentences hide little pretense or poetry. It's an appropriate writing style that lets Foster present his joys and sorrows plainly. Interspersing vignettes on topics such as missing dog posters, shelters, heartworms and understanding dogs' body language, Foster fleshes out this charming account of a life among dogs while providing hints for would-be dog savers. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Foster believes that dogs are like tattoos: they leave an indelible mark. His warm, candid, and unusual account of his experience in animal rescue is not sentimental about the hard work of saving dogs but rather confident, reflecting his belief that taking action on behalf of abandoned dogs is the right thing to do. Foster enumerates some of the ways people consistently do wrong by these wonderful animals and explains that rescued animals often have physical and behavioral problems, making them difficult to care for. But that, he concludes, is the point. Without knowing the outcome or what resources will be required, you take on the task, and you are a better person for it. Even if, or perhaps especially if, you have a sudden heart problem and must face Hurricane Katrina, as Foster and his trio of dogs did with the help of friends. Animal rescue efforts may be small in the eyes of the world, but to a redeemed animal, they are the world. Pamela Crossland
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Ken Foster lives in New Orleans with his dogs, Brando, Zephyr, Douglas and Bananas. His work has appeared in The Believer, McSweeney's, Bomb, The New York Times Book Review, Time Out New York, The Village Voice and other publications. A collection of his short stories, titled The Kind I'm Likely to Get, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. He has also been awarded fellowships to Yaddo, the Sewanee Writers Conference, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Wesleyan Writers Conference. He has edited two anthologies--The KGB Bar Reader and Dog Culture--as well as a special issue of the Mississippi Review. His most recent books are the memoir, The Dogs Who Found Me, and the collection, Dogs I Have Met. In 2008, he founded The Sula Foundation, which promotes responsible pit bull ownership in New Orleans.

Customer Reviews

The book is well written and an easy read.
shir
Sometimes dog stories can be very intense and emotional while others make us smile as they remind us of the loving bond we form with our pets.
storyteller312
I got this book last weekend and read it in a day.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

147 of 151 people found the following review helpful By Eileen G. on April 8, 2006
Format: Paperback
This story is every bit as absorbing and tender as its rave reviews claim. I ran out to buy it after hearing Ken Foster talk to Terri Gross on "Fresh Air," and was not disappointed. Foster's well-organized and totally readable account of his knack for spotting abandoned dogs, his rescues of them, and then life with the dogs he has found, plus his kindhearted descriptions of the people he meets, his good parents (on a road trip his big puppy eventually ends up sleeping between his parents - how usual is that??) and most of all his overarching sense of the wonder and pleasure at the world makes his story a real delight.

Of one of the book's many charming characters he writes, "I adopted Brando not because I was worried he might be put to sleep, but because after several days of visiting him I couldn't stand the idea of him living with someone other than me. " He concludes: " Within a few days I had developed a feverish dog-crush." I love this guy.

Foster had the odd luck of living with his dog(s) in downtown New York during 9/11, and then moving to New Orleans just before Hurricane Katrina hit. His story combines road trips with dog-care accounts. You learn a lot.

Some of the things he covers are heartworms, separation anxiety, no-kill shelters, preparing for the unexpected, his own health problems, and Pit Bulls. He instructs would-be rescuers ("What to Do When You Find a Dog"). This would be a great book to give to animal-loving kids (as well as adults) who are interested in such things. He supplies a good list of organizations and other resources for dog rescue. Throughout, Foster is compassionate and honest. His opinions are refreshingly kind. He suffers heartbreaking loss sometimes.
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44 of 45 people found the following review helpful By pjf on January 30, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book starts with 911 and ends with Katrina, and in between the two disasters is rescue and hope. The author doesn't pretend to be an expert, just an average person, and that alone is a useful message. That each of us, one dog at a time, can make a difference, at least in the lives of the animals that might otherwise be euthanized, just by giving a little help along the way. It's a gentle journey, but it has it's occasionally profound moments. Recommended.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Peggie C. Morgan on May 8, 2006
Format: Paperback
I read the book "The Dogs Who Found Me." What a great book. It touched me. It made me laugh and it tugged at my heart. I love the title because my newest rescue, a wonderful Pit Bull, found me. She is all love and kisses and now she's mine!

It pleases me to hear some one defend the Pit Bull breed.

Ken Foster's book is so real, so honest, and he tells it like it is.

I couldn't put it down. It's easy to read and very thorough. I'm hoping there will be an update. I'd like to know how the author is now and how Brando, Zypher, and Sula are doing. Especially Zypher.

I have ordered two more of the books to send to friends.

This is a book for anyone who truly loves dogs.

What a wonderful, kind hearted man this author is.

I'm grateful for all the information at the end.

It's very helpful and I have visited several of the sites.

Thank you for writing it! Peggie Morgan
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Anya on August 10, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
At first I agreed a bit with the disgruntled reviewer below who complains about the email style and lack of character development for people throughout the book, however I think now that might have been the point. I couldn't track most of the friends mentioned in the book and was curious to know more about the author, but the characters that were so fully developed that they've stayed with me are Rocco, Valentino, Katrina, Sula -- the dogs. And I think the simple writing style actually works for the story of a guy trying to live his busy life but unable to ignore the dogs in need that cross his path.

Reading like a collection of emails from a friend, the stories show how dogs can complicate a person's life, but how rewarding that can be, and then also how little it sometimes takes to profoundly change a dog's life. The sheer magnitude of dogs in need paralyze a lot of otherwise compassionate people, but this is a reminder of the huge power in doing something, anything for just one dog, wherever and however a person can. Given such a casual tone, it's a surprisingly deep and sneakily moving book.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Sharon Sweeney on November 27, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ken Foster is a master at capturing all of the emotions of owning rescue dogs. I. myself, have two rescue dogs and they have changed my life. He emphasizes the miraculous change that these dogs have on one's life. The joyand sorrow coupled with an uncanny enlightenment about what truly matters in one's life is encapsulated in this book. I simply could not put it down. It is a fast read with an everlasting gift.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Kiki on December 11, 2006
Format: Paperback
I work at an animal shelter in Chicago, and everyday I go into work I ask myself how I stand to do it any longer, it is so heartbreaking.

Mr. Foster says it the best.

"Rescuing something takes time, and there is a risk of revealing something about yourself-your vunerability-that isn't fashionable at all. That's what people don't understand. You do it because it is difficult. You do it because you aren't sure of things. You do it without knowing how any of it will turn out, or how much it will cost you, or if the story will be happy or tragic in the end."
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