real and fictional

For further information on each dog, see Statues

A Dog
                of FlandersAlways Faithful: A Memoir of the
                Marine Dogs of WWIIBeautiful JoeGreyfriars BobbyHachiko WaitsHachiko Waits
Jock of the Bushveld - Ad Donker
                PublishersJock of the
                Bushveld - Penguin ClassicsRed Dog -
                VintageRed Dog - PantheonYorkie Doodle DandyWhere the Red Fern GrowsMumuKashtanka

A Dog of Flanders (Maria Louise Ramé) 

Heartbreaking novel written by English novelist Maria Louise Ramé (under the pseudonym of Ouida) in 1872.

Orphan Nello and his grandfather one day find a dog, Patrasche, almost beaten to death (he had been abandoned by a mean owner who used and abused the poor animal) and take him home. Patrasche recovers and they, boy and dog, become inseparable friends. They live in a small village near Antwerp, Belgium, and Patrasche helps Nello and his grandfather to deliver milk there, pulling a small green cart. The three of them are poor, constantly hungry, but they, being together, are happy. When Nello becomes a teenager, however, things start deteriorating. Because of prejudice, he is forbidden to see his long time friend and neighbor, Little Alois; and to make things worse, after a misunderstanding, ends up being accused of arson by her father.

Nello has a great admiration for Flemish painter Rubens and his great dream is to see two paintings of his, the The Elevation of the Cross and the The Descent from the Cross, which are at the Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp. However, for one to sees it, one has to pay, and Nello doesn't have the money. As Nello is good at drawing, he believes he can improve his life by becoming an artist - but things go wrong all the way, for him and Patrasche.

A Dog of Flanders has been adapted for television and cinema (1914, 1924, 1935, 1960 and 1999); plus, 2 Japanese animated television series (animes) were produced: A Dog of Flanders (1975) and My Patrasche (1992) as well as an animated movie: Gekijôban Furandaasu no inu (1997) — the story is very popular in Japan.

Publisher: Book Jungle (2007)
Also in this edition: Rab and His Friends and Marjorie Fleming

Available for free at the Project Gutenberg

Always Faithful: A Memoir of the Marine Dogs of WWII (William W. Putney)

Retired Marine Corps captain and veterinarian, William Putney writes a moving and heartrending account of his days as commander of the 3rd Marine War Dog Platoon, in which some 72 dogs and their handlers were his responsibility.

Publisher: Free Press (2001)

Beautiful Joe (Margaret Marshal Saunders) paw

Beautiful Joe was a real dog who lived in Meaford, Ontario, Canada, and was almost killed by his first owner after having his ears and tail cut off without mercy. Rescued in 1890 by William Moore, from then on he lived a good life among his family. Joe became famous after Margaret Marshal Saunders (1861-1947), visiting her brother and his fiancee Louise Moore (William's daughter), become very fond of the gentle dog: touched by his story, she wrote a novel as it were an autobiography by the own Beautiful Joe. As Marshall Saunders (she didn't want people to know she was a woman), she entered her story into a literary contest sponsored by the American Humane and Educational Society — and won; the book, published in 1893, turned out to be a best seller. It was the first Canadian book in history to sell over a million copies.

Publisher: IndyPublish

Available for free at Project Gutenberg

Greyfriars Bobby (Eleanor Atkinson)

Atkinson's novel is based on the story of a real dog, Scottish Bobby.

Publisher: Echo Library (2006)

Hachiko Waits (Lesléa Newman) paw pawpaw

Grade 3-5 - Newman tells the story of the famous Japanese Akita Hachiko.

Publisher: Square Fish (2008)

Illustrator: Machiyo Kodaira

Hachiko: The True Story of a Loyal Dog (Pamela S. Turner)

Also tells the story of Hachiko; illustrated for kids.

Publisher: Sandpiper  (2009)

Illustrator:  Yan Nascimbene

Jock of the Bushveld (James Percy FitzPatrick)

Sir James Percy FitzPatrick tells his adventures with his dog Jock, traveling around their home country, South Africa.

Publisher: Ad Donker Publishers (2002)
Publisher: Penguin Classics (2007)

Online scanned copy of the first edition: Children's Library

Kashtanka (Anton Chekhov) pawpawpawpaw

Short story. Kashtanka is a female dog who lives with a carpenter and his son. One day, master and dog go for a walk and the master ends up losing Kashtanka, after they pass by a military parade. A kind man named George finds Kashtanka and brings her to his home, where he keeps a goose (Ivan Ivanitch), a cat (Fyodor Timofeyitch) and a sow (Havronya Ivanovna); the animals are trained to perform in a circus. Would  Kashtanka (renamed "Auntie") stay with George (who treats well his animals), or will she return to the not-so-nice carpenter?

Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books (1995) and others

Mumu (Ivan Turgenev) pawpawpawpaw

Short story written in 1854; it tells a tale of a deaf and dumb peasant (Gerasim) who is forced to drown the only thing in the world that brings him happiness, his dog Mumu. Mumu is an adorable female cocker, whose presence troubles Gerasim's mistress, hence she has to be destroyed. This story, along with other Turgenev's works, was credit with having influenced public opinion in favor of abolition of serfdom in 1861.

Publisher: Sovereign (2011)

Red Dog (Louis de Bernières) 

While passing through Dampier in the Australian outback, British novelist Louis de Bernières discovered the statue of Red Dog and decided to write about him, a dog that had no owner (after losing his beloved John), but had many friends that cared for him.

Publisher: Pantheon (2001)
Publisher: Vintage (2002)

Where the Red Fern Grows (Wilson Rawls) pawpawpaw

Novel about a boy who buys and trains two Redbone Coonhounds.

Publisher: several

Yorkie Doodle Dandy - Or, The Other Woman Was a Real Dog (William Wynne) 

Corporal William Wynne was an aerial photographer serving in New Guinea during World War II with the 5th Fighter Command of the 5th Air Force when he first saw her — a tiny Yorkshire Terrier who had just been found in a foxhole in the middle of the jungle by his buddy Ed Downey. The little thing was then under Sergeant Dare's care, and Bill immediately offered 2 pounds Australian for her; from then on, he and Smoky formed a team, one that split up only when, almost 14 years later (on February 21, 1957), the little dog died of old age.

From day one, Smoky was always with his master (even flying in dangerous missions!); in his spare time, Bill started to train Smoky to obedience trials and tricks. The little one turned out to be very intelligent, and soon they were making performances from Australia to Korea — everybody adored Smoky. Back home, Bill and Smoky continued to perform for audiences in clubs, circuses and even on TV, for many years.

In this book, Wynne tells his story with his beloved canine pal as well as remembers the difficult times during World War II (and after the conflict), Hollywood, its canine stars, their trainers and the big names from the movies (who, sometimes, didn't like to work with animals...), plus the beginning of the television. And he does answer the question: how did a Yorkshire Terrier end up in a New Guinea jungle???

Publisher: Top Dog Enterprises, LLC (1996)