"For those of you who do not know, the dog world has lost one of its greatest defenders this week. Vicki Hearne, author, trainer, and defender of dogs everywhere, has lost her battle with cancer, at age 54."
Anyone who has any interest in relating with animals, and has a reasonably literate streak, would enjoy Adam's Task. Be warned: although it's not a large book, it's more than a little dense. If your taste is more for the straightforward tale, try Bandit: The Dossier of a Dangerous Dog instead.
I find I have to end this entry with a poem you can find at http://www.dogtrainingarts.com/poetry/apology.html :
Apology for Canis familiaris
Not best of all, perhaps, but best
For us, though dogs lack the true lupine
Voice, towards which we yearn at dusk,
Wanting its timbres for their own sake,
Despising safety and the shabby sounds
That humble themselves nearly to words
For our ears.
In the chill snowy woods
At night we are glad of a dog if it is
Our own. There was one leaped once
To deflect death from me with feebler jaws
Than a wolf may live with and I wept
And shook and shook his hide and rugged bones
Ecstatic with belonging. The silly beast lay
His shaggy skull on my leg, hard
And clumsily, the gift of one who is
My home, who never had a home except
My home. I've never since preferred
Any voice more wild and wary than his.
A dog is a dog despite ourselves, the one
Who chose to dance within our reach; they stay
When they could run,
their feet laughing.
They have their generous ways we yet may lose
Full rights to if we never find and learn
To say at last their individual names.