Book Review: A Dog’s Purpose

dogs_purpose_smYou don’t have to be a dog fancier to enjoy A Dog’s Purpose, but if you do love dogs, you won’t want to miss this amazing book by W. Bruce Cameron. The heartwarming story brings the reader into the lives of one soul reincarnated into several dogs’ lives.

The author shows real understanding of how a dog thinks and how he views the world and his sometimes strange humans. The dog’s first character, Toby, born of a feral mother, develops the skill of survival. The soul comes back as Bailey and he learns unconditional love and loyalty. As Ellie, now a female, she learns search and rescue. Finally, as Buddy, he finds himself at a loss to find his purpose until his search brings him to his ultimate destination and fulfillment.

I’ve had dogs all my life and I found this book a fascinating study. I wish I could have read A Dog’s Purpose years ago. One of our favorite dogs was Bo, a yellow Labrador Retriever. Now that I’ve read this book, I believe Bo’s soul had been around a long time. On the other hand, our current dog, Toby, a Chocolate Lab, has a newer, undeveloped soul. Even though Toby is a very immature 10 years old, he’ll never in this life achieve the enlightenment of the older, wiser soul of his predecessor.

One of the things I loved about this book was the author’s view of how a dog interprets our vocal and body language. The bottom line, what’s in it for him, is so true to life. Yet, a wise dog will perceive what his human needs and will do everything he can to make that happen.

A dog accepts us “as is,” unconditionally. Any dog needs basic training, and perhaps even more specialized training. Still, his wisdom and depth of personality likely will depend on his past experiences. After reading A Dog’s Purpose, I now know to be more accepting, to treasure and respect my dog’s current station in life.

Author Cameron not only draws believable dog characters, his humans are also realistic and well developed. A Dog’s Purpose is a memorable book.