"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language." Martin Buber

What happened when I asked some Facebook friends to donate just a dollar to a great group called Project Pets – Spay, Neuter, Love?  Stay tuned for a posting sometime next week with the gratifying results and enjoy an interview with the President of this organization.  Its Vice-president, animal advocate, “Willie Wonka” has launched an informative blog, too.  You can read the current post at http://askwilliewonka.blogspot.com/2011/12/i-need-to-help-thomas.html?spref=fb

The other day, someone on Facebook posted about a young woman who was promising the owners of aging horses that she would (for a fee) take their beloved horses to an animal sanctuary.  Turns out, she took their money and then sent their horses to a slaughterhouse.  This deceitful and arrogant “human” then said there was nothing illegal about what she had done…but ahh…she has now been charged with Theft by Deception. At least it is something.  In my next post I will introduce some material on the things all those who wish to be involved with only honest and reputable rescues and Chip Ins, should know.  It hurts animals, and good causes, when these groups are allowed to continue with deceptive practices.

Now, back to good thoughts and words….Yesterday, my husband said he  didn’t know what to read next.  I told him about Beautiful Joe, a book I had down loaded when I had received my Kindle as a gift last fall.  I loved the book so much, I always recommend it to others.  Rich  started reading it that day and commented on how it made him think about the feelings that animals are capable of. I noted that it is striking how issues regarding the welfare of animals,and the resultant literary works, appear to endure; always touching the heart and inspiring us to be better humans.

In my last post I mentioned that I had three writing projects in various stages of play…my short story collection became a soft cover book last month (See ABOUT for LINK) and my Young Adult Novel, Full Snow Moon, found a home and will be e-published next month (loving the cover the publisher has designed) and I’ve recently signed with McFarland Publishing  for the publication of my Biography of Will Judy and his National Dog Week Movement (2013). This blog was lovingly launched two years ago to build interest and support of this national celebration that occurs each September.  Busy times are in store, but I do have several new blog posts in development…please enjoy this “repeat.”

NOTE: Since launching the National Dog Week Community Page late last summer, we’ve added many new members.  Go on over and LIKE us.  I’ll be giving away a free copy of my book SOMETHING’S LOST AND MUST BE FOUND at the end of the month to a randomly selected LIKER.  http://www.facebook.com/mobileprotection#!/pages/National-Dog-Week/218596591491974.

Now, here is a post (slightly updated) borrowed from last year.

The other day, a Facebook friend sent me a message asking me if I’d ever read the book Beautiful Joe.  She said that the book reminded her of me.  I have to admit, I’d never even heard of it.  Discovering that it was available as a free Kindle book, I made it the first download on my new device. Beautiful Joe was written in 1893 by Marshall Saunders as an entry for a Humane Education Society writing contest. It is a fictionalized autobiography of a “cur” name Beautiful Joe, told from the dog’s point of view. The real story took place in Ontario, but the author “relocated” it to a town in Maine.

At its heart, a little terrier-mix is rescued from the hands of a brutal dairy farmer and becomes part of the menagerie of an animal-loving family.  Turns out author, “Marshall,” was actually a woman named Margaret who thought she had a better chance of winning the writing contest using a man’s name.  Not only did she win, but her novel was the first Canadian book to sell over a million copies, going on to sell millions around the world.

I am only half-way through, but the story is so moving and well-done.  But two things strike me most.  How the lessons from our animals can make us, especially young people, more sensitive and caring and that things haven’t really changed that much since 1893. One of the heroes of the story, a young woman named, Laura, is a saint to all animals.  She sees to it that the brutal dairy farmer is punished by law, while caring for the unfortunate animals that have suffered at the hand of bad humans, something I see a lot of people doing today.

Back in the 1940s, National Dog Week Founder, Will Judy, knew how important animals were for the development of care-taking behavior in the young. He wrote, “Caring for animals, which depend knowingly upon humans, pulls a child or an adult out of his selfishness and away from his own narrow cell.”  This summarizes the true message behind Beautiful Joe.

Because I teach, and write, I think my Facebook friend saw similarities between Margaret Saunders and me, something that is very flattering. However, I will say “write” here, I see myself more as a reporter of events, someone trying to give the “quiet heroes” a place where they can reach out to others.  They don’t have a glossy magazine, or a popular TV or splashy Radio Show.  But these people are the real deal, on the front line of meaningful reform and new ideas.  And most of the time, by the way, not only are they not making any money, but using their own funds to make things work. If you scroll back in the “Archives” you’ll see what I mean.

I’ve enjoyed learning about Will Judy, the man behind the National Dog Week Movement, a man responsible for making the world better for both dog and human.  At one time, National Dog Week was so popular that over 200 cities, including New York, went over the top to truly honor American dogs.  The week had slogans and posters with themes like “A GOOD HOME FOR EVERY DOG…” and celebrity spokespersons.  We are slowly but surely restoring its place of honor on the American calendar and hope you’ll  be joining us in September (and year-round), embracing its message.

Yesterday, I received an e-mail from an author about the recent sale of his book to a publisher.  We happen to be represented by the same Literary Agent.  I asked him about his writing “path.”  It turns out that he is 84 years old and has had three agents.  He started writing using an old Underwood typewriter and wrote every single day of the year, even if it was just one page a day. He actually has three other books written and ready to go.  I congratulate him on his success and as he said to me, “Never give up.”  I thank him for this uplifting story…It is never too late to achieve what you’ve set out to do. Never forget this!

In closing, I would like to thank all of you who do so much, in the “real” world and on-line, for animals and people.  I thank you for taking the time to visit this blog, and for commenting here, in e-mails and on my Facebook page.  It really does mean the “dog-word” to me and it might even do some good.  I sure hope so.

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