Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Doggerel (The Moving Memoirs of Rescue Dogs and Their Second Lives) – Book Review

“Doggerel - The Moving Memoirs of Rescue Dogs and Their Second Lives, in Poetry and Prose”
By Angela Patmore

Foreword by Joanna Lumley. Inside this book are the portraits and true stories of discarded dogs that were not afraid to love again. These wonderful characters, fifty out of over 100,000 dogs a year that are unwanted and abandoned by their owners in this dog-loving nation, have sad stories of abuse, neglect and dereliction to tell. Often rescue dogs have been thrown out by owners who could no longer afford them, or who found them inconvenient or naughty, or who simply could not be bothered with them any more. Many have just seven miserable days behind bars before they are put to permanent sleep by council-appointed agencies. Unwanted dogs are desperate. They yelp and whine and cry out for someone to love and save them.

These lucky fifty have emerged triumphant and wagging, often against apparently insurmountable odds, to make their new owners very happy. The rescue charities are at crisis point. They need kind people to come forward and give these dogs a chance. Rescuing a dog can change not only the dog's life but yours, if you are willing to give it a try. This book explains how. It also tells you everything you need to know about finding the right dog at a shelter near you, and getting him or her used to you and your home. There are lots of other books about dogs. This one is about the ultimately lucky ones that were in dire need of help and love, and who got both.

DOGGEREL is being sold in aid of the Association of Dogs' and Cats' Homes, which embraces many of the UK's animal charities large and small. Right now they need your help.

This is a fabulous and very moving little book.  The first half of the book has poems about some wonderful dogs that have been rescued, some of which were still waiting for homes at the time of writing.  Each poem is accompanied by a photo of the dog, which helps you relate more to the subject of the poem. 

Some of the poems made me laugh; lots brought a tear to my eye when you heard what these lovely dogs had been through.  But these dogs were the lucky ones who have been rescued by some of the wonderful rescue organisations in this country, sadly there are many more who aren’t so lucky and many, many more who are still waiting for homes in rescue kennels.

 Busco, Sarah's parents' rescued greyhound.  She is Henry's girlfriend!

My favourite poem in the book is about an ex-racing greyhound called ‘Kesha’.  When she was no longer any use to her trainers, no longer earning any prize money, her owners got rid of her.  Luckily she found a loving new home thanks to the Retired Greyhound Trust, and is now very happy.  Her poem reminded me of a dog that my sister in law's parents rescued from the RGT, a beautiful brindle greyhound called Busco.  She was also a successful racer and was raced hard until she was six.  She’d had a difficult life, but now lives in the lap of luxury just like Kesha.  The last, and saddest, poem in the book, is called ‘No Name’ and is about the hundreds of stray dogs that are put to sleep every year after serving their 7 days waiting time.  This one had tears rolling down my face, but it’s so well written and unfortunately is very accurate.

The second half of the book is about adopting a dog and is full of really good information and advice about rescuing a dog.  It leads you through finding the ideal dog for you and it includes lots of contact details for UK rescues.  It then follows you through the stages of rehoming your dog, including coping with any ‘problems’ it may have, settling him or her into your home, training etc.  It is well written and informative; it has great advice for both newcomers to dog rescue and experienced dog owners.

Overall, this is a fantastic little book; I really enjoyed reading it, especially the poems.  It definitely gets 10 out of 10 from me.

To purchase this book online and to find more interesting books from How To Books please visit

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I've sent you a message on Twitter @YeOldeRockChick I won two Cinch-It collars for our dogs.Unfortunately there too big,one packet has been open to try on the other is sealed.
    They are large size fit Labrador type size dog.Anyway would they be any use for you to take to the dog rescue centre,I can post out to you.Heres a pic of them on my Blog half way down page.

    Paula xxx