- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; Reprint edition (October 18, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 044669634X
- ISBN-13: 978-0446696340
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 209 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #46,416 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Bones Would Rain from the Sky: Deepening Our Relationships with Dogs Paperback – October 18, 2005
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About the Author
SUZANNE CLOTHIER A lifelong animal lover, I learned to speak in order to ask for a horse for Christmas. That request not granted, I moved on to become well known in my very early childhood for a propensity for stealing the neighborhood dogs. No evil intent, just an unquenchable desire to be in the company of animals. ANY animal, whether my pet frog who lived in a Dixie cup or a cherished bug or the horse who drew the cart driven down our block each week by the fruit & vegetable man. One of the most thrilling memories of my early years was being at the neighbors' house (a heavenly madness of children and pets and, as my mother informed me later, loose morals) when the mother matter of factly announced that we should all be careful where we walked since the hamster had gotten loose again. It was almost unbearably exciting, this possibility that at any moment, a hamster might waltz out from behind the refrigerator or scurry from under the table. (Now an adult, such scenarios are not infrequent, though larger creatures are often involved, and outdoors, not under the table. Houseguests learn to be careful on early morning strolls around the farm not to startle any of our shaggy, well horned cattle who may have escaped overnight.) With the exception of a frightening two day stint as a temporary secretary, I have always worked with animals in some capacity. Consequently, I've considerable skills with pitchforks, wheelbarrows, pooper scoopers and other tools of the trade, and can be woken from a dead sleep by the sound of an animal preparing to play show & tell with their stomach contents. I also own more medication, medical supplies and veterinary equipment than human oriented supplies. Some of the people I love best in this world are veterinarians, and at times, I wish I could take myself to a veterinarian; the treatment would be far better than my current HMO allows! My husband and I live on a lovely farm in upstate New York, sharing our lives with 8 dogs (7 German Shepherds and 1 Lab/Chow cross), 5 cats, 2 horses, a donkey, three pigs, various turkeys/chickens/quail, a Blue Front Amazon parrot, an African spur thigh tortoise, a Jersey/Holstein steer, and a herd of approximately 25 Scottish Highland cattle. When the barking, meowing, cackling, squealing, whinnying, crowing, braying and mooing come to a halt, it's a quiet, peaceful life. Inspired at an early age by Dr. Doolittle and Rin Tin Tin, I've never quite given up my early impressions that animals DO have something to say and that a good German Shepherd is an extraordinary pal to have around the fort. As a result, I've earned international recognition in the dog training community for a rather eclectic but sensible, balanced approach to the dog/human relationship and to dog training and behavior. My 30 plus years of experience as a horsewoman include numerous educational but painful falls that have taught me: a) I don't bounce the way I used to in my 20's; b) an animal who has physical limitations and/or lacks confidence can be dangerous to ride (this understanding has translated into my reputation as an expert in assessing canine athletic function in performance dogs); c) it's impossible to fall off a dog, though absolutely likely that I will meet my death by falling over a dog or dog toy. As a kid, I methodically (though not in any particular order) read through the entire Animal/Nature section of the local library, prompting concern on the part of the sweet librarian who kindly tried to point out that other types of books were available. Thanks to her, I was able to broaden my horizons past the likes of Walter Farley (The Black Stallion and so many others!), Marguerite Henry (Misty of Chincoteague & others), Albert Payson Terhune (Lad of Sunnybank and countless others), Ernest Thompson Seton (an indescribably wonderful hero in my childhood for his skill as a naturalist, a storyteller and an artist), and so on. Later, when my tastes had matured though my d
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I find her presentation of these ideas nearly unreadable, though. Her editor has done her no favor by allowing repetitive sentences and paragraphs to take up valuable space. I plowed through nearly a third of the book while wishing for clarity of expression, and finally gave it up. Careful editing could make this book both more helpful and more understandable.
I recently adopted a senior rescue and this book was exactly what I was looking for. Towards the end, Clothier describes several beautiful end-of-life stories related to her and others' canine friends and the lessons she learned from each experience. I may have 5 years with my dog, or only another month, but each day is precious and she deserves the fullest life I can give her!
Clothier draws from several other writers and sources for quotes and inspiration which I thought was very neat for a book about dogs. My only "half star" complaint was that at times, her prose became long winded and repetitive. Besides that minor issue, it was wonderful and a must-read for any dog owner!
Not a training manual, Clothier lays the foundation for understanding why your dog behaves the way it does. Perhaps more importantly, through many examples, she lets us see how our dogs see our behavior. A relationship is not a one way street, and the sooner we understand this about our relationship with our dogs, the better and more intimate our relationship can be.
I really cannot recommend this book enough. Even if you have no behavioral problems with your dog - do yourself a favor and read it. It has completely changed the way that I see my dogs, and our relationships have already improved.