This is not the book you typically see me talk about -- and when I was approached to give it a read and review, my initial response was to give it a pass. But we adopted an 11 year-old dog this Spring, and I've been thinking a lot about canine health. Which makes me right in the target audience for this book, actually.
I sort of have to assume that the medicine and science behind this book is right and/or responsible. Because really, unless the book called for the use of Windex to treat common maladies or something as useless as "mild doses of physic to work on the bowels," there's zero chance I'll be able to suss out the problem. Instead, I can talk about a couple of things: is it useful? Can it be understood by lay readers?
Yes, to both, thankfully.
Yes, you have to be a dedicated reader -- focused and concerned -- to get through a little of the language. But what pet owner with an ailing companion isn't focused and concerned? Yes, there was a lot of what Davis talked about that was Greek to me, but if I had a dog/cat/lizard/whatever that had a problem along the lines she was talking about; or had received [technical term X] as a diagnosis, I'd know right where to go. Part of the problem for me at the moment, is my old girl isn't a prime candidate for Canine Hip Dysplasia, so it was hard to connect to those pages -- it's not a book to read cover to cover. It's a resource. But from what I can tell, she gives some pretty decent sounding advice for working with puppies to head off that problem.
Not only some pretty decent sounding advice, there's some handy photographs with good diagrams added so you know just what to do. There are plenty of nice anecdotes and illustrations from Davis' casework throughout the book to anchor the instructions. Both of these features cannot be overstressed as valuable.
My favorite part comes from Chapter 8, "Embracing the Warrior Mentality at Home," discussing the attitude and approach that pet owners should take when helping their ailing/injured pets. I wish this chapter -- or at least the initial sections of it -- had appeared earlier in the book. I just think it would've flowed a little better. But I'm glad it was there.
Was I able to get something to help my girl? Maybe. I definitely know where to look if it comes to it. I can see this as a valuable tool in the toolbox for every pet owner.
<i><b>Disclaimer:</b> I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion and this post.</b>