Perfect Pairing – for the Dogs (Rescue)

Sadie, our “island girl”

As the mother of a rescue pup,  I know how much these pups are loved and how much we all enjoy reading heartwarming furever home tales. Today, I’m pairing two wonderful recent dog rescue picture books.

 

A Dog Named Haku: A Holiday Story from Nepal 

Authors: Margarita Engle with Amish Karanjit and Nicole Karanjit

Illustrator: Ruth Jeyaveeran

Publisher/Date: Millbrook Press (an imprint of Sterling Publishing Group)/2018

Ages: 5-8

Themes: dogs; rescue; Nepal; holiday

Short Synopsis (from Goodreads):

It’s the Festival of Lights in Nepal, and today is the day to honor dogs! Brothers Alu and Bhalu wander the streets of Kathmandu, passing by twirling kites and bamboo swings, looking for a dog to feed. But as night falls, their task begins to feel hopeless, until they spot a small black dog who is in need of a friend. This sweet story presents an important Hindu holiday through the eyes of two young boys, making it relatable for both those familiar with the holiday and those reading about it for the first time.

Read a review at Kirkus Reviews.

 

Operation Rescue Dog

Author: Maria Gianferrari

Illustrator: Luisa Uribe

Publisher/Date: Little Bee Books/2018

Ages: 4-8

Themes: dogs; rescue; missing family

Short Synopsis (from Goodreads):

This sweet story about a girl named Alma and a stray dog named Lulu shows how a girl and a dog can rescue each other.
Lulu’s ears flap in the wind
as the rescue truck rolls into the lot.
Lulu’s tail thumps—
Everything smells . . . new.
Lulu sleeps under the moon, drinking from mud puddles and covered in ticks until she is rescued. She waits for the Operation Rescue Dog truck, scared and uncertain.
Alma misses her Mami, who is far away in Iraq. Alma wears Mami’s scarf around her like a hug. She wonders: Can a dog feel like a hug?
In this heartwarming and moving picture book, a lonely child and a lonely dog come together and find warmth, companionship, and love in each other.

Read a review at Picture Books Help Kids Soar.

I paired these books because both involve bringing a new dog into the family and both feature diversity. The story in A Dog Named Haku takes place in Nepal, a mountain kingdom in the Himalayas. We learn that dogs are honored there during a holiday, and the two brothers in the story find and bring home a homeless puppy, Haku, and share their family’s feast with him. In Operation Rescue Dog, Alma misses her soldier mother and thinks a dog will be the perfect “surprise friend for Mami’s return”. Alma and her Abuela set off to meet the Operation Rescue Dog truck as, in a parallel story, pup Lulu journeys to meet Alma and find her forever home.  Reading these books together shows that the human-animal bond is universal and that families of all types have room for four-legged friends. Both books also feature helpful back matter.

Looking for similar reads?

See Toby (Hazel Mitchell, 2016), Found. (Jeff Newman & Larry Day, 2018), The Story of Moose: How a Big Dog on a Little Island Found Love…After Nearly 5 Years in a Shelter (Laurie Damron, 2016).

2 responses to “Perfect Pairing – for the Dogs (Rescue)

  1. Lovely pairing. Learned something new about dogs in Nepal. We rescued our last dog from a breeder and sex slavery. He was a 4-year-old male toy poodle and very skinny. The minute he came home with us, he put on weight, physically grew — a miniature poodle now. Beautiful dog – the smartest dog we’ve ever had. He was so happy to free from his cage, run around the house and have his diaper removed. He’ll be 13 yrs in June.

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