Author-illustrator Hazel Mitchell lost her heart to a dog
rescued from a puppy mill. The temporary foster home she initially
offered turned into a forever family. She undoubtedly discovered that
the road from neglect to loving care is not always easy going for
either critter or humans. In her lovely picture book, Toby, fiction
based on real life, readers, listeners, and parents are privy to the
snags and the wonderful rewards of rescue adoption.
A boy and his dad, moving into a new home, adopt a dog from an
animal shelter. Much to the boy's consternation, Toby is initially
afraid and hard to get close to. The father's patience is tried by
Toby chewing things up. But then a special thing happens and you know
the trio is bonded for keeps.
Toby is a perfect read aloud. I can't imagine anyone, parent or
child, not falling in love with this canine cutie.
On a personal note, my marriage family's first cat, Murray, was given
to Eugene and me after three years of impermanence and possible
neglect. It took her awhile to realize she was part of a forever
family. We moved twice while she was with us. She came to us as an
outdoor/indoor cat. Every time she saw us pack she started bringing
in all kinds of small dead creatures and dropping them at our feet,
probably demonstrating her love and usefulness in hopes we'd keep her.
A great big shout out goes out to rescue animals and their human
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