The Dog in the Dentist Chair, and Other True Stories of Animals Who Help, Comfort and Love Kids
By Peggy Frezon
Released in celebration of National Change a Pet's Life Day—January 24!
This is a heartfelt look at real-life animals who visit, cuddle, and help kids in unexpected and amazing ways: JoJo the golden retriever who calms anxious kids at the dentist, Gracie the therapy cat who encourages reluctant readers, Parfait the service dog who helps a boy with seizures, Magic the miniature horse who comforts children in hospitals, Ricochet the dog who surfs with special-needs kids, and others.
Each chapter, kids will recognize animals’ great capacity for love and devotion, which reflects God’s enduring love for us all. This book strengthens kinships with animals, encourages humane treatment, and helps kids build lifelong bonds with animal friends. Includes beautiful color photos of the actual animals, relevant and easy-to-read Bible verses, and ways children can give back and help animals.
“I loved all the marvelous animals Peggy Frezon writes about in this book. Her engaging style is every bit as kid-friendly as the stories she tells. This will make children smile, cuddle up, and be comforted and inspired, even as they learn wonderful things about our animal friends. Highly recommended!” —M.R. Wells, coauthor of Four Paws from Heaven and The Cat Lover’s Devotional
“The Dog in the Dentist Chair is filled with beautiful stories of hope, love and compassion to support the powerful bond between children and animals. This book is paw-tastic!” —Robin Ganzert, President and Chief Executive Officer of American Humane
“Peggy Frezon loves animals. More than that, she also understands children. While this book is full of touching true stories of animals and kids together, it’s Peggy’s heartfelt empathy and friendly voice that makes them shine.” —Aline Alexander Newman, National Geographic author of How to Speak Dog and How to Speak Cat
“With great warmth Peggy Frezon shows young people that companion animals can be more than companions. They can also be our guides, bringing us to greater kindness, courage, and well being.” —Gayle Boss, author of All Creation Waits
“The Dog in the Dentist Chair is also valuable for an adult reader. It's an inspiring resource for parents, teachers, and caregivers looking for ways to reach and heal the children in their care.” —Melinda Johnson, author of Piggy in Heaven
“Pet lovers look no further for your next book purchase. Everything about The Dog in the Dentist Chair by Peggy Frezon is delightful. Cheer radiates from the cute but true animal stories. Joy bursts from the colorful and well-designed pages. There are perks throughout and at the end.
From dog and cat to horse and pig to camel and dove, what do all these animals have in common? Each of them helps children in one way or another. They might visit children at school during reading class or exam week, they might visit children who are stuck at the hospital or in a group home, or they might even visit children at the dentist or in an airport. Sometimes the animals simply help children relax such as two hairless guinea pigs that help kids at school who are having a bad day to feel good again. Other times animals help children perform tough tasks such as Oliver the draft horse who provides physical therapy to a girl with cerebral palsy. At times animals help keep children safe such as Parfait the dog who alerts adults to when Joseph will have a seizure.
Each chapter features a different animal who “helps, comforts, and loves kids.” Frezon starts with a fun anecdote, continues to engage with a gentle and upbeat narrative, and wraps up with a moral and a scripture. One particularly touching story is of Lentil, the cleft palate dog. Frezon starts the chapter with an anecdote of Lentil being hugged by a boy who observes, “He looks just like me.” She next explains that Lentil was small like a bean when born and that his mouth looked different from that of other dogs. From there, she proceeds to tell how Lentil can do something special—teach children to accept their differences. After sharing a few examples, she succinctly wraps up the chapter with this little lesson: “Do you think Lentil is the best dog-camper around? He helps kids see that everyone should smile. Because no matter how it looks, a smile is always beautiful.”
Although the Dog in the Dentist Chair will be enjoyed by all readers, its lively design will especially appeal to children. The large print is easy on the eyes. The colored titles and bold backgrounds draw one’s eyes to the page. The large framed photos make the text come alive. Silhouettes of paw prints and flowers also add to the fun. Every chapter also includes a vibrant textbox with info about the featured animal.
There are perks throughout and at the end too. These include an idea page for how children can help animals, resources for information on animals who assist others, and an author’s page.
Careful readers will pick up little details. They’ll realize that animals who assist must have a friendly personality. Many of them will receive training to do their job. Several of them will wear some kind of identification. Children will love the inspiring stories and adults might find themselves wanting to become a handler.
Ever since my cat and I became certified as a therapy pet team, I’ve been collecting books on therapy animals. This is an outstanding addition to my collection!” —Allison Hunter, Lincoln Pet Center
Author Peggy Frezon is contributing editor of All Creaturesmagazine, and the author of Faithfully Yours. Her inspirational and animal stories appear regularly in Guideposts and Angels on Earth, Chicken Soup for the Soul books, and All Creaturesdaily devotional (Guideposts Books). She lives in upstate New York where she enjoys sharing her love of animals with her two granddaughters. She and her husband rescue senior golden retrievers and are involved in therapy dog work. They share their home with two faithful golden retrievers, Ernest and Petey.