Or Should Have Read
This book does more than just tell people not to breed or buy wolfdogs. Part Wild will touch the hearts of everyone not just owners of exotic pets because it is a story about love and loss.
I read PART WILD by Ceiridwen Terrill.
It's "One Woman's Journey with a Creature Caught Between the Worlds of Wolves and Dogs".
I would definitely recommend this story to anyone who loves animals, has dogs or is even interested in wolves and/or dogs. It's a good story and well-written, with moments of humor and heartfelt sadness. Plus, I thoroughly enjoyed the scientific explanations of the differences in dogs and wolves (call me a nerd, it doesn't bother me--in fact I'll take it as a compliment ;)
And, I could totally sympathize with Ceiridwen's frustrations at having an "escape artist" hybrid. Believe me! And, if you don't think I can relate, read about Sasha my Siberian Husky who has escaped my totally fenced-in yard on too many occasions.
So, you might think that (since I have a notorious escape artist) I'd totally sympathize with Ceiridwen. And, although I think she tried to make a good home for Inyo, I couldn't feel as sympathetic as some other people might. One reason is that I find it difficult to understand why anyone would want to have three VERY large dogs, especially someone renting a tiny place.
My backyard has a fence that is over six feet high, all the way around. And my dog can leap like a deer. Luckily she can't scale our backyard fence but that doesn't mean she won't dig. We keep an eye on the tunnels and fill them in with bricks (and my yard used to be so pretty:(
I would think any renter would have serious trouble renting a home, apartment or trailer with a Wolf hybrid then add in a Cathoula leopard dog-pit bull cross and a German Shepherd/Doberman mix and I would think it would be nearly impossible to find a home with those three large dogs as pets.
I have one mid-sized dog in a house that is fully fenced and it can still be a humongous challenge keeping her contained (and I make sure she gets plenty of exercise. I take her with me on my marathon training runs).
So, one thought that kept running through my mind as I turned the pages of Part Wild was, "What were you thinking?"
It also bothered me to read how often Ceiridwen chained Inyo up. I've read that animals who are kept chained up get terribly frustrated and sometimes turn that frustration into anger, which can manifest itself in harmful and dangerous ways. So, I kept thinking, this is a recipe for disaster.
Plus, Ceiridwen had other challenges facing her. She and her husband were dealing with issues like obsessive compulsive disorder and bipolar disorder - then top that with the stresses of serious financial woes and studying for an advanced degree and it wouldn't have taken a wolf-hybrid to send me over the edge.
What I took away from the story was that love can't fix everything no matter how much we wish it.
I'm not saying that Ceiridwen had many options available to her in the end, which is what makes the story so horribly sad but I also think, in other circumstances, Inyo might have done much better.
But...I'm not recommending that anyone get a wolf/dog hybrid. I have a husky and I wouldn't recommend that breed to anyone who isn't training to run a marathon (and willing to take their dog with them on training runs), and has a fenced yard with someone home during the day to keep an eye on those Houdini hounds.
Still, I think this is a good book and I would recommend it to anyone who loves animals.
Did you read any books in 2011 that you WOULD recommend? Please share them in the comments section, as I'm always looking for another good book to read :)
Horizon: Scott Westerfeld
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