“Seattle’s Second Chance Shelter smelled of damp fur and dog breath. Frantic barks and whines pierced the air and assaulted Anna’s ears. She shrank back from the desperation that hung in the air like mist. All the sad eyes begging for a home. The furry foreheads rumpled with anxiety. Anna’s tender heart slid to her feet.
‘We shouldn’t have come here,’ she shouted to her boyfriend, Jeff.
‘You wanted to check out the dogs,’ he said.
Anna was clutching the Second Chance flyer she’d found that morning on Jeff’s windshield. Coming here had seemed the best way to goad themselves into action after weeks of talk about adopting a dog. But now, engulfed by the dogs’ distress, Anna wasn’t so sure.
‘We could have looked for a dog on Petfinder,’ she said. In their rented condo, they could have studied photos on the computer screen.
‘You can tell a lot more of you see a dog in person,’ Jeff said.
‘Yes, but I want to take all these dogs home.’
‘We can only afford to care for one.’”
“My alarm clock failed to ring, but by skipping morning coffee I manages to be only fifteen minutes late. As the elevator crawled to the eighth floor of the Animal Medical Center I hoped that perhaps Clancy too had overslept. It was 7:20. The elevator door opened and I stepped into the hall to find him waiting.
“I know I’m late, Clancy, but it happens occasionally.” He looked angry. “If you would just wait until I come get you, you wouldn’t have to pace in the corridor.”
I unlocked the office door, and he brushed past me as he entered. I opened the drawer immediately, knowing there would be no peace until he got what he wanted. Clancy was not a finicky eater and promptly concentrated on his breakfast.
“Our dog has special needs, the greatest being the need for a lobotomy. After that, he could use a good dose of Prozac. Add some Ritalin and he’d approach the vague semblance of a well-adjusted canine. Feels almost doable.
Except for his tail of freakish accidents and half-baked suicide attempts.
Sometimes I think Henry—that’s the dog—had ended up in a different family, we’d all be better off. Some combinations just don’t mix. Take Mentos candy and diet cola. Put them together, and you get a carbonated geyser blowing your bottle cap.
Pets are supposed to be fun. A pleasant enrichment of your life. Dogs especially. Loving, loyal, sleeping by your feet.
I don’t believe in divine misprints. But life with Henry makes me wonder.”
Surviving Henry: Adventures in Loving a Canine Catastrophe by Erin Taylor Young is a story that will have you laughing constantly. This amazingly touching story about all the mishaps, accidents, and disasters that come from one boxer named Henry. Through the ups and downs, Henry helps his family see what is truly important in life, thus bringing the ultimate happiness of having a canine companion in a family.
We have included a video by the author because we know you’ll want to see the legendary Henry that inspired the book.
“Can you imagine your life without a cat? Not if you’re reading this book. Now and then you will find a book that’s difficult to put down. And this is one of them. The stories cover a wide spectrum. Memories of your own cat history will surely be activated. At times you will find yourself smiling or even laughing as you connect with a story. You’ll remember the sounds of a purr or a hiss or a quiet meow. You’ll remember long-lost images of your cat climbing up the drapes or hiding in the shower or stealing that piece of fish from the counter. You might even remember the panic you felt when you couldn’t find your cat for a few hours, or even several days. And you might remember the feel of that dead mouse under your foot, which was really a gift from your proud hunter.