As many of you know, I have been very hard at work researching and writing my next book, Soldier Dogs, which goes deep into the fascinating world of military working dogs.
It has been a very exciting few months of immersing myself behind the scenes with these four-legged heroes and their devoted handlers and trainers. I’ve traveled to some incredible places during my research, and have seen some amazing things. I’ve been told dozens of riveting stories of military dogs during both wartime and peacetime. Some are gripping adventures, others are heartrending, and a few are even quite humorous.
The book looks at every facet of the lives of military working dogs, from breeding to training to deployment to what happens when they are no longer able to serve. Soldier Dogs even explores dogs’ senses â€” some of which may surprise you, and all of which are groomed by the Department of Defense to help save lives.
The focus always returns to the deep bond between most dogs and their handlers. We all know how well bonded we are with our own pets, but imagine being in a war zone and having your life and the lives of possibly dozens of others depending on your dog’s nose and your ability to read its signals. Add to this the fact that in war settings, dogs can be with their handlers almost 24/7, even sleeping in the same sleeping bag or cot, and the bonding is profound.
I’m getting a little sidetracked from my main reason for writing this post, because I am so intrigued by the subject (which is always handy when writing a book), and could talk about it for hours. But now the reason for this post:
I want to let you know that because my deadline is so fast upon me, I have to devote every possible moment to the book. You may have noticed I’ve already cut back on the number of blog posts I’m doing, but it’s getting to the point where I am going to need to march off with the Soldier Dogs for a few weeks with no other writing obligations. Dogster’s supergreat managing editor, Janine Kahn, is very supportive, and will be in charge of making the blog an awesome place to visit in my absence. (Thank you, thank you, Janine!)
Well, off to my “deployment” to my writing cottage in the backyard. I’ve got Jake at my side, so I am in good hands. (He could never have been a military working dog … or could he? Find out next spring when the book comes out! Jake isn’t telling a soul before then.)
I will miss the blog and all of you, but will see you again in late October/early November.
If you’re interested in pre-ordering Soldier Dogs so you can be the first on your block to have it, do so via this Amazon page.