A delightful dog forever changes the life of a physics professor in this true-life tribute to man’s best, and most forgiving, friend.
It was just after New Year’s 1978 that Deck (Development of Quantum Theory from Physical Principles, 2009) received an unwanted Christmas gift from a friend in Iowa. A call from the Toledo, Ohio, airport informed him that a dog had been air shipped to him and was awaiting pickup. A quiet, somewhat shy bachelor accustomed to his own routine, Deck had no intention of bringing a dog into his rather tidy life. Unable to immediately ship the 7-month-old puppy back to its sender without first retrieving and then resending him a day later, he decided to find someone to adopt the frightened canine. Dodger-McGee quickly worked his way into Deck’s life and heart. Over the next 14 years, man and dog strove to adjust to the other’s unique lifestyle through a journey taken by two independent souls inexorably connected by that special bond between human and dog. A cheerful, affectionate dog, Dodger-McGee displayed exceptional sensitivity to the specific needs of the humans in his environment. Greeting each and every comer individually, he politely discriminated between those who appreciate up-close contact and those who prefer some personal space between man and dog. He knew without being told that Bob’s frail mother could not endure his usual jumps, so he quietly rested his chin on her lap. He was also meticulous in observing rules he set for himself: only one meal per day, specifically after dark; one effusive greeting per day to the next-door neighbor; never enter the living room. Deck recants the story in third person, with “Bob” playing the protagonist. An observational quality in the writing lends a strange air of detachment, even though it’s clear Bob deeply loves the dog. There are several touching moments and a few that are absolutely heartbreaking, as when Deck takes a sabbatical and an aging Dodger-McGee must weather a year with indifferent caregivers, without the most important member of his pack.
Likely to bring smiles and tears to dog lovers.