Let the Dogs Speak – And a Contest!

Hu-dad here to interupt pictures of The Herd for a plug for a great book (and announce a contest at the end of this post).  Every week, I receive offers to send us products for review on the website. Unfortunately, most of those products are things that I am not really interested in, so I have routinely declined those requests and rarely endorse products, except for those that I actually purchase and truly use.

When I heard that my friend Penny Blankenship was illustrating a new book, I knew that this was a book that I needed to read. In case you don’t know Penny, here are some blogs or websites you should check out:

Meeshka’s World

Everyday Tales of Woe

Squishybags.com (which really shows off Penny’s wit and talent)

The Husky Review

So with the desire to see some of Penny’s great cartoons, I downloaded the book, “Let the Dogs Speak! Puppies in Training Tell the Story of Canine Companions for Independence,” authored by Marianne McKiernan.

Let the Dogs Speak

So here is the really cool part.  I loved the book. You see, with a Herd of rescued dogs, I have tremendous respect for all of the people involved in the chain of guiding a lost dog to its new forever home.  I admire the people who scour the shelters for the dog’s that can be saved (and, somehow, can walk away from the ones that they know can not be saved).  I respect the people who volunteer their time to transport dogs to parts of the country where homes are more readily available.  I salute the people who staff adoption days, clean kennels, offer vet services, etc.  But, I am most impressed with the people who foster a dog knowing that at some point, they will have to allow their hearts to break so that that dog can move to its forever home.  How can anyone do that?  But I am so thankful that they are that strong.


But what about the people that are puppy raisers – the people that take in assistance puppies and groom them for months, only so that they can be later be trained to assist a human with some challenge?  How can you raise a puppy to adulthood – and then give it up?  Over and over and over.

This book, based on a great blog, follows the stories of several puppies as they grow up in their puppy raiser home for Canine Companions for Independence.  And the stories are all told from the point of view of the dogs.  Many of the stories will make you laugh, a few will make you cry, and all will give you tons of respect for those people who volunteer their time to be puppy raisers.

Puppy cleaning

Oh – And did I mention contest?  We have been given a copy of the book to give away. Yep – Free!  The contest is really, really simple.  Simply post a comment here at the end of this blog (or in the comments section on our Facebook Page of this blog post) saying you would like a free copy of Let the Dog’s Speak. We will put everyone’s name into a drawing and select one name.  Viola – free book winner!

In the meantime, you can buy your own copy from Amazon (including a Kindle version like we read) by going here.  I highly recommend it and thoroughly enjoyed reading the book.

P.S. – Full disclosure.  I paid full retail price for the Kindle version of this book.  Subsequent to reading the book and deciding to do a review, I requested and received a free hard copy of the book for use in the giveaway.  I receive absolutely no compensation of any sort for the sale of any copies of this book.  And, as I mention above, I do know the illustrator of the book.  Oh, and the cartoons above are all copyrighted by Penny Blankenship and the book and I have used them with her written permission.


  1. holly on February 8, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    We would love a copy of the book too! Thank you for the kinds words about fostering dogs. We have done is several times and it is always hard to let them go to their new homes,but we know its best for them to go to a good home and in our hearts they will always be with us and we know we saved another dog. We have adopted 2 we have fostered because they just fit in our pack and family so well and I wouldn’t trade the experience of saving a dog’s life for anything. It is very rewarding for them and us.

  2. Michelle on February 7, 2013 at 9:04 am

    We would love to win the book!

  3. Amy on February 7, 2013 at 8:49 am

    Would love a good book to read & I love to read anything involving dogs.We have 1 sibe & 1 mutt, which are spoiled rotten. Our lives revolve around them & they’re worth it.

  4. Shelby's Rescue on February 7, 2013 at 7:46 am

    We would love the book! If we don’t win, we will just have to buy it! Thanks to you for giving forever homes to these wonderful animals!

  5. Sandy on February 7, 2013 at 3:41 am

    Would love to read the book. We have enjoyed our rescue dog, and he is the lovingest I have ever seen

  6. Beth and Bailey on February 7, 2013 at 3:31 am

    We would love a copy of the book! 🙂

  7. Sibes Rock on February 7, 2013 at 3:22 am

    We’d love to enter your contest. If we don’t win Mum will buy it.

  8. siku marie on February 7, 2013 at 12:13 am

    We have nothing but the highest of praise for everyone even remotely connected with rescue…especially the small organizations that pay for expenses with personal checkbooks. The White Dog Army would not exist if it were not for a WHOLE LOT of angels in rescue, transport, fostering, vetting, and more. We are eternally grateful.

    Yes, we would love a copy of the book, “Let the Dogs Speak” and will pass it forward when we are done.

  9. Robert Johnson, Sr. on February 6, 2013 at 11:31 pm

    Would love to have a copy of the book ” Let the Dogs Speak”. Sheila and I do both transport and foster for As Good As Gold and this sounds like a book right up our alley.

  10. edith on February 6, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    I would like a free copy of Let The Dogs Speak. Thank you.

  11. Sylvie on February 6, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    I would love to win this book.

  12. Ice 'n Ayla on February 6, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    Ayla sez: Our hu-Mom would just love to have a copy of this book, too. She is part of the NorthWapiti News Group (Karen Ramstead), and she follows Penny’s work there, and you can see our hu-Mom sitting in front of her computer, crying with happiness when she reads articles about Rescue Sibes finding their “forever home” after months or years of being mistreated.

  13. Lisa Myers on February 6, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    I would just love a copy of Penny’s illustrated book. I love all her stuff she does on Karen Ramstead’s North Wapiti blog as Ms. Bet the magnificent, etc. My great-niece and her Mom & Dad have been raising Companion dogs for years & I get so attached to them that I am the one crying when they graduate & go to their forever homes. Hu-Dad, you are so right when you say it takes a very special person, or persons, to do this very important job. I salute all who foster an animal or raise a companion animal! Sitka’s Mom

  14. Christine Oberg on February 6, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    I would love a free copy if Let The Dogs Speak’

  15. Laura on February 6, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    What a fun book, and such cute illustrations — your friend Penny is very talented! Having had the pleasure of knowing a few guide dogs in my time, I have nothing but admiration for the puppy raisers, so I’d love to be picked to win this book.

  16. Dani on February 6, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    I’d love a copy!

  17. All Things Collie on February 6, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    I would like a free copy of Let the Dog’s Speak, would you please add me to your raffle? Thank you so much!

  18. Alana Jensen on February 6, 2013 at 11:55 am

    The book looks wonderful!

  19. Erin on February 6, 2013 at 11:27 am

    Count me in. I am a puppy raiser for Guide Dogs for the Blind on my sixth puppy. It’s an amazing mission/journey.

  20. Melanie Winston and Mae Smith on February 6, 2013 at 11:06 am

    Count me in please.
    Doggie Foster Mom

  21. Deborah on February 6, 2013 at 11:02 am

    Would love to read this book so please put my name in the drawing. I checked and it is available for my nook, if I don’t win.

  22. Margaret Beatty on February 6, 2013 at 10:46 am

    My sibes and I would love a copy of the book, “we” are huge fans of Penny’s work!

  23. Marianne McKiernan on February 6, 2013 at 10:45 am

    WOW – thank you to the Herd for a fabulous review! I am delighted that you enjoyed the book. Penny’s cartoons are hilarious and truly show the spirit of the book. And please check out my Facebook fan page (set up by the Amazing Penny!) for the chance to win one of her signed color illustrations:
    Thanks again for the heartfelt review.

  24. Donna Wolfe on February 6, 2013 at 9:29 am

    Would LOVE to have a copy of this book. Love all of Penny’s cartoons, go out of my way to hunt them out :O)

  25. jack & moo on February 6, 2013 at 9:17 am

    We’ve been fans (and subjects) of Penny’s fabulous cartoons for years, and her wit is dog-gone unmatchable!

    “We want this book”, but if we don’t win, that’s ok too. We’ll get it when mom’s got extra green papers again.

  26. Diana & Leika W on February 6, 2013 at 9:00 am

    Thanks for the review! Please enter me in the contest for a free copy of Let the Dog’s Speak. 🙂

  27. Paula Rector on February 6, 2013 at 8:53 am

    Ooh Penny is a great artist & I love all things dogs, especially Sibes (ok, kitty’s too)! Both of our dogs are rescues (husky & husky mix). Some people are very special to do what they do! We’d love a chance to win the book!

  28. Susan and Wrigs on February 6, 2013 at 8:53 am

    Sounds like a great book! Count us in. 🙂

  29. Tracy F. on February 6, 2013 at 8:47 am

    We have a rescue Husky, as well as many other rescues, past and present. Would love to read this book!

  30. jane niederstadt on February 6, 2013 at 8:46 am

    I would like a copy of the book. I too have a rescue dog from a shelter, but i also like to think i recued both my husky (who is gone now) and my german shepherd. Aries, my husky had severe epilepsy and who knows how he would have been treated by some one else. I have bought my last 2 dogs becuase Roxy, my pound hound come to us with parvo and when I called the shelter to let them know so they could check the other dogs around her they gave crap. Now my shepherd I bought from some bad people and he lost some of his sibs. He is healthy and happy and had that leg growth diease. He use to yip just getting down from the couch. I have had a lot of problems with my dogs and still want more. I found a tumor on Roxy and will bbe taking her to the vets soon. Lovely. I know too many people with dogs who have gotten a tumor and it doesn’t end well. Hugs and kisses to the herd.

  31. houndstooth on February 6, 2013 at 8:43 am

    Oh, I bet that book is fantastic! I would love to read it, and I may have to look for a nook version!

  32. Daisy Reed on February 6, 2013 at 8:39 am

    We would like to win a copy of the book. Looks fun.

  33. Karen Casey on February 6, 2013 at 8:31 am

    I have a 9 month old husky that I fostered and couldn’t part with. Please add my name to the list.

  34. Barbara Morgan on February 6, 2013 at 8:30 am

    I would really love to have a free copy of Let the Dog’s Speak.

  35. Vivian Kuhn on February 6, 2013 at 8:23 am

    I want the book too!!! I’ve always admired (and wondered too) the people who raise these puppies, give them love and training, knowing that too soon they will have to be turned in. As a former volunteer (in FL) for CCI, I attended “graduations” and experienced for myself the sights of people crying as they said good-by to their fosters. Even knowing the puppy you raised is going to be “special” to someone who really needs him/her, it’s not easy. I’ve also foster Siberians and it hard to let them go, even when you knew this when you took them in… that’s why I’ve “failed” with two.

  36. Zoe (and Marilyn) on February 6, 2013 at 8:16 am

    My mom would love to have a free copy of Let the Dogs Speak!

  37. Barbara on February 6, 2013 at 8:06 am

    I have a rescue Husky named Loki whom I adore. I would like to be a part of the contest.

  38. Wild Dingo on February 6, 2013 at 2:07 am

    Well, I don’t want a copy. Because I just bought it. Twice. I was signed in under MWD’s kindle. Ooops. So now we both have a copy. won’t he be surprised! it’s his birthday this month. so I guess my work work here is done!

  39. Mallory Dilworth on February 6, 2013 at 1:56 am

    I want the book!!

Leave a Comment

Read Another Story

← Back One Story ◊ OR ◊ Forward One Story →

Hu-Dad's Novels

His books pay for our food!