If you want to instill good reading habits to yourself, then make sure that you engage books that you’ll be interested in. Maybe you should consider reading dog tales. Whether or not you are a dog owner, or even a pet owner, dog tales are always good reads. It’s something that you can easily relate to since the stories are full of companionship, loyalty, and lessons.
You will most likely get hooked with it, and it might also motivate you to later on expand your reading horizons! Maybe at first you will read animal tales in general, then you switch to other books and materials related to these topics.
To guide you with this endeavor, the Furry Companion gives you a list of the dog tales that you can enjoy during your home quarantine.
Table of Contents
A Big Little Life: A Memoir Of A Joyful Dog Named Trixie by Dean R. Koontz
This dog tale revolves around Trixie, a fantastic dog who surprisingly entered the life of the author, Dean Koontz, and led him to live his life differently. His experience with this four-legged creature even inspired him to draft his very first nonfiction book!
When Trixie came into his life, she was only 3 years old by then. What made her so special was the way she behaves and loves her owners even if she was already a retired service dog. Prepare to explore the heartbreaking and amazing stories of Koontz’s on how Trixie’s existence sparked his marriage, taught him to appreciate things more, and take on adventures out of his box.
Rest assured that most dog lovers will be able to relate to A Big Little Life is a book full of love and compassion.
The Art of Racing in the Rain, Dog Tales by Garth Stein
If you want a dog tale that will melt your heart and make you cry, this book will definitely not disappoint you. The Art of Racing in the Rain is poetic and moving writing, which tells the dog tales of Enzo, the loving dog of an up-and-coming race car driver named Denny Swift.
What makes these dog tales offering unique is that this story comes from the perspective of Enzo on the eve of his death. It significantly captured the sad exchange of Swift with Enzo and how they displayed the concept of what it means to be family.
The Friend: A Novel by Sigrid Nunez
This narration opens with a woman unexpectedly losing her longtime mentor and best friend in a snap of a finger. Because of this, she finds herself in a tight spot, burdened with the problem that she has to take care of a dog that her idol left behind.
She felt that this was a big task to carry since she has to keep up with the dog’s mute suffering. The said Great Dane was traumatized by the sudden demise of its master and the threat of dog eviction in the woman’s apartment building. Although she saw this scenario as a burden in the middle of her grief, she was surprised that it became a massive part of her healing process. This also provided her with enjoyment and happiness in the times that she was isolated from the rest of the world.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Dog Tales by Mark Haddon
Are you a big fan of mystery novels? The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time is an exciting dog tale where the protagonist investigates the reason behind the death of his neighbor’s dog.
What’s surprising about this is that he is known to be a happy-go-lucky guy that is full of mischief ideas. But when he put his heart into solving this mysterious case, his investigation turned 180 degrees. He runs into a thoroughly unpredictable narrative that centers on the death of the dog.
Chaser: Unlocking the Genius of the Dog Who Knows a Thousand Words by Hilary Hinzmann and John W. Pilley
Do you always talk to your pet and secretly wish that they would converse with you? Do you wonder what runs in their head and what they think about you? Chaser allows you to explore this idea.
When a retired psychology professor, John Pilley, bought a Border Collie puppy named Chaser, he slowly realized that the communication between these two creatures has endless possibilities. This breaks the belief that dogs and humans cannot understand each other at its fullest.
Believe it or not, this dog tale describes Chaser as a gifted dog that does not only identify a thousand toys by its name, but she also has the ability to understand complex human language. Professionals learned this extraordinary fact, and Chaser then eventually changed the mindset of people regarding the intelligence of dogs.
How Dogs Love Us, Dog Tales by Gregory Berns
One lifelong wish of neuroscientist Gregory Berns is to understand the way dogs think and whether they are capable of feeling love. This quest turned into a more serious scientific research project that produced intriguing insights about the canine brain.
Aside from these discoveries, Berns and Callie, his adopted dogs, also strengthened their bond and love throughout the experiment. It’s a must-read if you want to integrate intelligence with the realities of a dog-human relationship.
Take note that this book is not just tailored to science geeks out there. It’s for everyone since it’s remarkably free of jargon.
Lost Dogs and Lonely Hearts by Lucy Dillon
This dog tale features a fictional character called Rachel. She is a 39-year-old woman who was having a really unlucky year. Aside from breaking up with her cheating boyfriend and losing her longtime dream job, she felt the burden of inheriting her late aunt’s house, a border collie, and a crowded rescue kennel. This is something she was firmly against since she knows nothing about dogs. What’s more, she is not familiar with how to run a rescue kennel. It’s something new and taboo to her.
Despite this, she takes up the challenge to fulfill her aunt’s wishes. When she started slowly finding new homes for these strays, she realized that this task is not only for these creatures. It might also be for her, realizing that she also needs rescuing.
Biloxi, Dog Tales by Mary Miller
This is an entertaining and funny dog tale about an unlucky guy who keeps receiving bad news this year. His dad died, his wife dumped him, and he retired from his job, expecting that he will be able to establish a successful business. He just can’t seem to take a break. On the verge of breaking down, he then meets a dog named Layla.
As time passes by, his bond with Layla contributes to a positive change within himself. He started transforming from an irresponsible individual to a more passionate person, full of positivity in second chances.
My Dog The Paradox: A Lovable Discourse About Man’s Best Friend by Matthew Inman
Source: Public Domain Vectors
Does your dog engage in weird actions such as going outside to potty, only to find themselves sniffing around the grass at 2 a.m. instead? Do you experience handling a very hyper and enthusiastic dog whenever you enter the house from a long day at work? Notice how dogs are goofy and impulsive in most of these scenarios. Half of the things they do literally make no sense at all. Despite this, dog lovers can’t see themselves without these furry companions beside them.
What this dog tale explores are the funny little stories that owners experience with their pets. It takes on a hilarious approach, without having to sacrifice the small details that make the narrative more genuine and relatable.
My Dog Tulip, Dog Tales by J.R. Ackerley’s
Dog owners are altogether different from one another. Some are born dog lovers, but others develop their compassion with these pets later on in their lives. The latter was the experience of the famous BBC writer K.R. Ackerley, a long-term literary editor of the studio’s weekly magazine entitled The Listener.
Upon the adoption of a high-strung German Shepherd named Queenie, he quickly changed his life for the better. He devoted himself to becoming a good person, even if people kept stepping down on him at his work.
Because of the heartwarming narrative approach of this dog tale, network executives decided to transform this into an animated movie. It featured the voices of Christopher Plummer, Isabella Rossellini, and Vanessa Redgrave.
The Call of the Wild & White Fang by Jack London
These dog tales centers around a canine hero called Buck. He is a pampered pet in California who was stolen by the Alaskan wilderness. These people then trained and forced him to be a part of the team of sled dogs. In this experience, he suffered brutal treatment from his masters and extreme training that led him to improve his discipline skills. These individuals only stopped this approach when he learned how to be disciplined and turned his back on the civilized life he had before.
White Fang, on the other hand, had a reverse journey. He started as a fierce wolf-dog hybrid in the wild environment but later adapted a tamed life.
A Dog’s Way Home, Dog Tales by W. Bruce Cameron
As a longtime dog lover, try imagining a scenario where you would lose your dog somewhere far away and not having the means to find him. What would you feel? Of course, you’ll be scared and terrified! With reading A Dog’s Way Home, you will be able to experience this range of emotions through its convincing storytelling.
This dog tale is written from the perspective of Bella, a persevering pooch who faced various challenges just to be able to find her wake back home. She entered this situation after her owners left her in the wilderness 400 miles away from home. Aside from the act of discipline and perseverance, the book also discusses the value of love and family in inspiring you to be the best version of yourself.
Travels With Casey: My Journey Through Our Dog Crazy Country by Benoit Denizet-Lewis
Source: Wikimedia Commons
Benoit Denizet-Lewis is a columnist in the New York Times Magazine who decided to showcase pet lovers who are too obsessed with their dogs. He featured his adventures with Casey, his sweet Labrador, during the time they packed up the RV and traveled over 32 states in a span of 4 months. That’s basically 13,000 adventurous miles altogether.
In the span of their thrilling adventures, they were able to experience sleeping in a dog-shaped bed and breakfast along Idaho, run away from a pack of wolves, and spend time with the famous Cesar Millan of California. Aside from these adventures and misadventures, they treat this as a memorable experience because of all the life lessons they got from the various animal advocates and pet psychics they met along the way.
The Genius of Dogs: How Dogs Are Smarter Than You Think, Dog Tales by Brian Hare
Admit it. You have been tricked by your dog at least once in your life. They’re pretty witty, don’t you think? With this in mind, Brian Hare offers you a unique perspective on the science behind a dog’s behavior. It discusses how dogs plan their mischief on us and the top reasons why we should never underestimate them. At the same time, Hare also delved into the social intelligence of dogs, and how this aspect improves their development.
King: A Street Story by John Berger
The narrator, King, was introduced as the primary guardian of a homeless couple. This dog steals meat from the butcher’s shop and shares the flesh with his owners. His canine sensibility is the central topic of this book since it gives him the amnesty from all of the human hardships and provides deep insight into what’s happening with his companions’ lives.
This book attracts a big audience since it covers the importance of strength and dignity in this world full of pain and chaos.
Dog Is Love: Why And How Your Dog Loves You, Dog Tales by Clive D.L. Wynne
A canine behaviorist called Clive D.L. Wynne explores the idea of whether the obedience of dogs comes from their feelings and nature, or just because they are trained to be submissive. He starts the book with this: “It really seems like our dogs love us, too. But for years, scientists have resisted the conclusion, warning against anthropomorphizing our pets.”
This concept bothered the dog lovers out there. Luckily, Wynne proved throughout the book that the heart of the human-canine relationship is not submissiveness or intelligence, but love.
Dog Songs: Poems by Mary Oliver
Mary Oliver’s works attract many audiences because a lot of parts in her poetry have been translated into memes on the internet. Take note, however, that it’s not because it’s hilarious. In fact, her poems are visceral, direct, and full of visions, something that users get fond of.
Before her death, she compiled several poems and turned it into a collection entitled Oliver’s Dog Songs. Readers treat this as a poetic meditation since it only focuses on one idea, human-dog bond. Experts believe that these are the kinds of readings that will only take you little time to finish, but you’ll find yourself coming back from time to time.
The Call Of The Wild by Jack London
This dog tale classic by Jack London was initially tailored to adults. But because of its relatable story, it became a staple reading in high school English lessons all over the world. So, what makes it this big?
The setting of these dog tales was in Yukon during the Klondike Gold Rush in the 1890s. It tells the stories and adventures of Buck, who slowly shifted its personality from a domesticated pet to a wolf. The way London told the story was very detailed, so even though the texts are written in plain paper, you still get to visualize and imagine what’s happening inside.
Lily And The Octopus by Steven Rowley
This debut offering by famous screenwriter Steven Rowley narrates heartbreaking dog tales of the primary protagonist named Teddy, alongside his dog counterpart Lily. Upon hearing the title, you will expect this to revolve around an octopus and dog, right? It may be a valid point, but it’s far from the real story.
The said Octopus in the title is a representation of the cranial tumor that is threatening Lily’s life. It traverses the struggles and pain of both the owner and the dog in these trying times. Despite this, Rowley still blended fantasy and humor in this autobiographical fiction to add some spice into the dog tales. It’s definitely a moving novel which shows the impact dogs have in our lives.
To make your journey with these dog tales more memorable, why not enjoy these books with the company of your dog? You may even read these out loud in front of your pet. This way, you’ll be able to bond more and communicate better with each other.
A fitness junkie and a cosmopolitan traveler, Kathy is the mom of peppy baby Malaya and mixed beagle Holly. She’s a capable businesswoman who balances work with living a wanderlust life with her hooman and fur babies.