Aug 6, 2009

Tales From a Dog Catcher

by Lisa Duffy-Korpics

This book was so good I read it in just two days. Lisa Duffy-Korpics is a high school teacher, but when she was in college she worked for the police department as the animal control officer. Tales From a Dog Catcher is a collection of stories from those years serving as ACO in a town north of New York City on the Hudson river. It was interesting to read about the inner workings of the police department, and how well she got to know many of the local residents due to her job. Her experiences include the usual calls to deal with abusive and uncaring owners, stray dogs, old ladies hoarding cats, dog bites, etc. But then there are some uncommon ones as well. A white dog who for twenty years haunts the grounds of an old convent. A dog who- to all appearances on purpose- lures other dogs to their death in a game of chicken on a busy street. A feral cat who escapes from his cage and keeps the officer "hostage" in her own home. A bereaved family who wants to bury an elderly man's dog with him- even though the dog is perfectly alive and healthy. A wealthy foreign woman who- because of a language barrier- thinks she is buying mink coats but ends up with four manx kittens, and has no idea how to care for animals. Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction. The stories in these pages were entertaining, curious, sad and heartwarming all together. I laughed some, I almost cried, I smiled a lot. It was that kind of book.

I received a copy of this book from the author.

Rating: 4/5                  252 pages, 2009


  1. I get pretty emotional with animal books. I absolutely know we couldn't make this stuff up if we tried. I'm liking the sound of this one. I bet my daughter would like it too.

  2. I love animals, so this book sounds wonderful to me! The cover is great too. Thanks for the review.

  3. Sandy Nawrot- This book can be tough. It's not as depressing as I expected, actually, but many of the situations did not turn out as the author had hoped, which is very sad, and frustrating.

    Bermudaonion- Isn't it a great cover? It reminded me of another one I saw going around the blogs a while ago- a dog (beagle I think) laying on the grass, his ears spread out. But I think the book wasn't about animals, and I can't remember the title, so I couldn't find it again... anyway, I think any animal lover would really enjoy this book. I hope you do!

  4. This sounds like a book I would love. Great review!

    I think the book with the similar cover is Secrets to Happiness.

  5. This sounds great. I'm a sucker for a book with a dog on the cover, but this one has some intriguing short stories in it. I wanna know about this white dog that lures other dogs to their deaths in a game of chicken.

    Great Review.

  6. Anonymous8/07/2009

    I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  7. This sounds wonderful! I saw "dog-catcher" and immediately had a vision of the one from Lady and the Tramp - evil! Actually, though, I'd love to read this. I call Animal Control all the time, and I don't really know anything about how they work. Great review!

  8. Nan- that's it! the cover, I mean.

    Serena- I think that one was my favorite story, because it was such a puzzle.

    Abagale- thanks for visiting! I'm glad you like it here.

    Jenny- Nothing evil about this woman! I was surprised about the different things people would call her for, and she would willingly go help- I think, I would only call Animal Control about a dangerous or nuisance animal, but she would go help elderly people take their pets to the vet, and things like that. Wonderful.

  9. Thanks for the review Jeane! There is a similarity between the cover that you mentioned - I had no idea. I had no input on the cover. I got to see it when it showed up on Amazon one day - that's how it usually works unless you're Stephen King or someone like that! I did get to see the wet cat on the back before they added it and I really loved that. Thanks again - take care!

  10. ldk- You're welcome! Thanks so much for the book. I'm surprised they don't even let you see the cover until it shows up on Amazon. I guess that's so you can't complain, if you get no input? It really is cute, though.


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