Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Fido and Friend in Five: Susan Goodman and Ella!

Susan Goodman
One of the many things I love about Susan Goodman's website is it says, "Who says research can't be fun?" As a librarian and bloodhound of a researcher, I couldn't agree more! So how great is it that she's passing that message along to kids with her wonderfully fun and fascinating non-fiction books. I mean, how can kids resist titles like It's a Dog's Life, All In Just One Cookie, The Truth About Poop, Life on the Ice, and many more? How many more? Susan has written 30 books for kids, plus (are you sitting down?) approximately 225 articles for kids! She's also written many articles for the adult audience in National Geographic Traveler, Modern Maturity, Redbook, Glamour, Parents, Self, and many many other periodicals.

Susan was nice enough to send me a signed copy of her new book (which she knew would be near and dear to my heart), It's A Dog's Life: How Man's Best Friend Sees, Hears, and Smells the World. I wish I'd had a copy when I was research doggy senses for A Dog's Way Home! Susan is running a really fun contest on her website that you can enter to win a copy of It's a Dog's Life! Be sure to check it out.

Susan does an awful lot of traveling with all her research, so she doesn't have a dog herself. But she is the very proud "grandmother" to her son's dog, Ella. She and Ella spend as much time as possible together when Susan is home. I'm sure she does what every good grandparent does: spoils that grandchild rotten and then send her home.

Let's help her spoil Ella in today's Fido and Friend in Five:

1. How did you and Ella find each other?  I got a phone call right after my son, Matthew, adopted her from the City Pound in Manhattan. She was a five-month-old pup who came right up to the front of her cage and licked his hand. He was seriously thinking about another dog from a no-kill shelter, but when Ella was released from her cage, she jumped right into his lap. That was it for Matt. It didn't take much longer for her to jump onto our couch/bed/arm chairs/laps the first time she visited us.

2. What makes Ella's tail wag?  The people she loves. When I haven't seen her for a while, that tail is going so fast it feels like a drumstick solo playing its beat against my leg. Of course, any new toy has tail-wagging potential until its been demoted to "old toy" status or has been chewed to bits.

3. What's your all-time favorite dog story?  That's like asking which of my children I love best; it's unanswerable. The story that had the most effect upon me? Old Yeller. Just mention it to any kid of my generation and we all get that traumatized look (that would be me). Since I don't want you to think I'm always into pathos, I won't say anything about Hachiko, which is such a poignant story. Let's go with Balto, the hero dog, and Toto too!

"I love my Boy"
4. If Ella could change just one thing about you, what would it be?  Since Ella is my grand dog, this question should really be asked about her true love, Matthew. Then she'd be very clear: give me people food and take me on longer walks! Since I get to play the indulgent grandparent, I already do both of those things!

5. In five words, tell us what Ella means to you:  Matt would say, "She's my sidekick" and not to worry about the word count. I'll just say, "Ella makes my son happy (and me too)."

Many thanks to Susan and Ella for joining us today on Fido
and Friend in Five. And thanks to Matt for sharing Ella
with us too. Be sure to cruise Susan's website. You'll be glad
you did!

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