A wise, witty, alternative history of humanity, Dog's Best Friend reflects on how our relationship with dogs has changed over the centuries, exploring the universal desire for non-human companionship.
One of the first words we learn. Perhaps the best friend we'll have. An animal so much a part of our lives that we speak to it like a child and spend small fortunes on its wellbeing and wardrobe. Dog.
In the last 200 years, no inter-species relationship has developed so fast, nor come so far, as that of man and dog. Dogs accompany us in every walk of life, usually three times a day. How and why did this relationship begin? How has it changed over the centuries? And who's getting the upper hand?
Dog's Best Friend investigates this unique bond by revisiting some of the most important milestones in our shared journey. It begins with the earliest visual evidence on ancient rock art and ends at the laboratory that sequenced the first dog genome. En route, we encounter the first Labradoodle in Australia, a misguidedly loyal Akita in Japan, an ill-fated Poodle trainer in the United States, and a hilariously disobedient Romanian rescue dog named Kratu at the Birmingham NEC. We also meet Corgis and Dorgis at the Palace, the weightless mutniks of the Soviet space programme, a Dalmatian who impersonates Hitler, and an owner who claims his Border Collie can remember the names of more than 1,000 soft toys.
If you own, or once owned, a dog, you'll know that our relationship can be as rich, complicated and rewarding as the relationship we have with other humans. This book reflects this diversity, with the aid of trainers, breeders and psychologists. Above all, it explores the extraordinary ability of dogs to enhance so many aspects of our lives.
Dog's Best Friend is as entertaining as it is informative, as eccentric as it is erudite, and all told with Simon Garfield's irrepressible gift for witty and insightful storytelling.
About the Author
Simon Garfield is the author of 20 books. His previous titles include the international bestsellers Just My Type, On the Map and Mauve, while To the Letter was one of the inspirations for the theatre shows Letters Live with Benedict Cumberbatch. His study of AIDS in Britain, The End of Innocence, won the Somerset Maugham prize.
Dog's Best Friend is as fascinating, funny and wise as we've come to expect from Simon Garfield. More than that, it's a book that asks profound questions about what it means to be canine.
Funny, fascinating and endearing - this is a book that will make your tail wag!
A fascinating, informative and highly entertaining expedition through the highways and byways of dogdom.
Byron, Sassoon, Woolf, Charles Schulz... many have managed to express the love we have for our dogs, but until now, no one has adequately explained it. Simon Garfield has written a book every owner will lap up with the same delight and enthusiasm their Fido would a discarded box of fried chicken. That is to say, with great pleasure.