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Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love    by Larry Levin order for
by Larry Levin
Order:  USA  Can
Grand Central, 2010 (2010)
Hardcover, CD
* *   Reviewed by Lyn Seippel

The Levin family meet Oogy at the veterinarian clinic when they go to have a beloved cat put to sleep. The puppy's face is a disaster, with scars demolishing one entire side. They fall in love anyway. Gentle and sweet, it's hard to believe this could be a fighting dog. Barbaric as it sounds, dog fighting is a major underground sports event that spawns numerous other illegal activities including drug and gun trafficking.

The vet explains that the pup's role was not as a fighter. At his young age and with his disposition, he was a bait dog, given to fighting dogs to tear to pieces as part of their training. Levin later tried to trace how Oogy came to be at the clinic but there was no record of a dog fight raid at about that time and the name of the police officer who dropped him at the clinic wasn't included in his file.

Oogy wasn't rescued by Levin's family alone. The Ardmore Veterinarian Clinic cared enough to perform surgery on his horrendous injuries even though they'd be out of pocket for expenses; the police officer dropped him there instead of at the county dog shelter; and the administrator at the clinic saw to it that Oogy was treated and later gave the dog some training before sending him to live with the Levin family. Oogy is adored by his new family. Levin compares Oogy's adoption to that of his twin sons.

Although Oogy's story begins with Levin's morning routine, Levin's casual person-to-person style is so easy to read that you don't mind waiting for Oogy's story to get moving. The dog's history alone is enough to make this a good read.

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