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Animals and the Kids Who Love Them: Extraordinary True Stories of Hope, Healing, and Compassion Paperback – November 15, 2011
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This anecdote-filled book is an inspirational, if perhaps overly sweet, testament to the power of the bond between humans and animals. The stories chronicle real-life examples of pets helping kids with autism, blindness, post-traumatic stress disorder, illnesses, and behavioral problems, or a divorce in the family. The authors, a husband-and-wife team, offer one, the tale of how their cat comforted their adopted daughter from Korea. Each chapter ends with a “meditation.” An example: “What are the ways animals or other people have answered your prayers and given you hope? How could you pass on to others the gift of hope?” The Andersons divide the book into three sections: hope, healing, and compassion. Then they add an appendix with useful tips on what to consider when bringing a pet into the family (finances, safety, space). The pro-pet, bottom-line message: expose your kids to furry friends. --Karen Springen
Barbara Abercrombie, editor of Cherished: 21 Writers on Animals They Have Loved and Lost
Animals and the Kids Who Love Them is an insightful blend of compelling stories and rich life lessons from which we can all learn. For all who have had an animal touch their life in some way, this book serves as a wonderful reminder that animals profoundly impact us at every stage of life.”
Dianne McGill, executive director and CEO, Banfield Charitable Trust
Kids and animals make a perfect connection! What a treat to step into the Andersons’ book and discover the myriad ways that animals bless our children’s lives.”
June Cotner, editor of Animal Blessings and Dog Blessings
Top customer reviews
The animals in the stories are not limited to, what we may consider the normal species for companion pets. We've all heard of, and probably have seen, dogs that assist people with special needs. It's not too unusual to hear of a cat or horse that has helped someone live a fuller, happier life. But a turkey? A chicken? A guinea pig named Cocoa Puff? Stories about these unusual animals make Animals and the Kids Who Love Them fun and interesting reading.
What I noticed most in the stories is that not only is the child who interacts with the animal given a better life due to the animal's involvement, but the therapy, no matter what it is, extends to those around the child. Siblings, parents and all who have contact with the child. It's like a pebble being dropped in a pond; the ripples expand outward and touch all those around.
Authors Allen and Laura Anderson don't romanticize the relationships. There are proper ways to introduce a pet/companion into a home, especially around children with special needs, and this fact isn't hidden from readers. The book's appendix discusses, "What to Consider When Deciding to Bring a Pet Into the Family." I appreciate this special section because pairing a pet to a family is of the utmost importance for the safety of all involved.
An animal lover and partner of a Pet Pals and pet therapy dog (and two cats and another dog), I'd like to believe everyone will read this wonderful book and be introduced of the gifts some animals have to make people's lives fuller, happier and healthier. Animals and the Kids Who Love Them is a great introduction to the world of the power of having a special companion in our lives.
I am fortunate to have my own story included in this fantastic book. Peter Pan's Nana Became My Daughters' Playmate is the story of our dog, Jessica - a dog we fostered - who stayed and became much more than the "family dog".
The stories in Animals and the Kids Who Love Them remind us that animals can be angels in fur coats or feathers. They can be perfectly healthy or "differently abled". And they can aid us in ways we didn't think possible.
This book is a "must read" for anyone who has known the love of a special animal. Buy it for yourself and buy it for those who share your love of animals.