Teddy is a stray who loves his life. When he gets the chance to be part of a family he begins to see that life isn't so bad with others. But one night he runs away.
Title: Teddy the Shelter Dog
Author: Tony Feeherry and Maridee Feeherry
Illustrator: Margot Rogers
ISBN: 9780998702025 Language: English
Themes: responsibility, pet ownership
What's it about?
Meet Teddy. Teddy is a stray dog who loves nothing more than running and chasing things but there were times when he wondered if there was something more out there. Then one night Teddy is in an accident and ends up at a shelter. As luck would have it Teddy is adopted and loves his new family but now dreams about the time before when he was running free - so he runs away.
This story looks at things from Teddy's perspective. The storyline is clear and well thought out. Each paragraph has a faded out box behind it (so the text doesn't get lost in the illustrations) making it very easy to read visually. The illustrations are just gorgeous.
When I first saw this book I was reminded of Buddy Unchained that I read a few years back which is of a similar nature of dealing with the subject of a shelter. However, Buddy is an abused animal that is rescued whereas Buddy is a stray dog. It draws a good comparision for students as to how, depsite the differences in lifestyle they both end up in a shelter and subsequently in a family environment. This is a plus if you are wanting to teach using Text-to-Text comparison.
I liked that this book chose a different perspective for animals. Teddy likes his life doing what he wants, when he wants it but there is that something more he feels is out there. The other feature of Teddy that I like is when he runs away and sees the "Lost Dog" poster - which he doesn't get because he knows exactly where he is! A bit of humour really does break the seriousness of the book and provide a good giggle or two.
What I like about this book is the ability for children to connect with it via Text-to-Self. A lot of kids have either had a pet go missing or know someone who has lost a pet. My kids aren't even 4 years old yet and we had one of our silkie chickens disappear. After 3 days we made up a little letterbox sign and started going around the neighbourhood and we were lucky enough to be reunited with our little girl who had been taken in my an elderly lady who also had chickens. So for my kids they made a lot of connections between their missing chook and Teddy going missing.
And bit of discussion about the illustrations! I love the illustrations. They are drawn in pencil and there is a lovely unique quality to them that really suits this story and makes it about family and all warm and fuzzy. I'm sure that digital drawings would have been good, but the authors made a wise decision with their illustrator choice.
Overall, a good book to companion up with Buddy Unchained or even the Hairy McClary books.