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Little Dog, Lost

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  432 ratings  ·  109 reviews
From Newbery Honoree Marion Dane Bauer comes the tale of a boy who needs a dog, and a dog who needs a boy—a match made in heaven, if only the two can meet.

Mark is a boy who needs a dog. But he can’t get his mom on board with his plan.
     Buddy is a dog who needs a boy. Buddy has an owner already, but not one
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published May 1st 2012 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
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Wonder by R.J. PalacioThe One and Only Ivan by Katherine ApplegateThe Fault in Our Stars by John GreenLiar & Spy by Rebecca SteadThe Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Levine
Newbery 2013
61st out of 116 books — 1,132 voters
Little Dog, Lost by Marion Dane BauerThe Fast and the Furriest by Andy BehrensThe Year of the Book by Andrea ChengThe Ghost of Graylock by Dan PoblockiLiar & Spy by Rebecca Stead
Iowa Children's Choice 14-15
1st out of 16 books — 2 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 840)
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Jan 27, 2013 Sparrow rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Linda
I want a puppy so bad!!! But, I think if I had to go through all the drama of this book in order to get a puppy, that might not be worth it to me.


boxer puppy climbing rock

Sad puppy wants its own girl:

Like Mark, I can’t have a puppy right now. Unlike Mark, I do not spend every waking hour researching puppies. I don’t think I have the devotion or sense of responsibility that Mark seems to have, but maybe when I grow up, I will, and then my mom HOA will let me have a puppy.

This story is in verse, and it is very
Review of an advance copy:

In a lot of ways, this is a fairly typical dog book. Boy (Mark) desperately needs a dog. Dog (Buddy) desperately needs a boy. However, the telling of the story is quite lovely and what makes this stand out from other dog books. Buddy has lost her boy when his family moves to the city in an apartment which doesn't allow pets. Buddy is left with a friend, a well-meaning woman who doesn't understand dogs. But Mark understands dogs. He has understood them forever, and even
Dec 12, 2013 Emma added it
This book is a very easy and quick read, but I did enjoy it. I really like reading books that are in poetic form, and this one was perfect. The author added a really cool layer. She describes this little dog in detail (poetically). Then she repeated this part throughout the book, which added a nice layer to the book. The only part that I did not like about this book is how the author spoke to you. Sometimes she said things like: "do you know what I am talking about... Maybe not... So I will tell ...more
Victoria Whipple
Buddy must be left behind when her family moves to the city, into an apartment that will not accommodate a dog. The family leaves her with a friend in the small town of Erthly, and while that friend had good intentions, she does not know much about caring for a dog. There's a boy, Mark, in Erthly who wants a dog, and has asked repeatedly for one with the repeated answer of "No." Finally Mark has an idea not to get himself a dog, but to make Erthly a better place for his friends and their dogs. E ...more
Angela Kidd Shinozaki
I'll start out by admitting that pet stories aren't usually my thing. But there was something about the forlorn looking little puppy on the cover that just tugs at your heartstrings. And most of us, especially children, can relate to being lost. I think it makes a good early chapter book. I'm not sure it was necessary to be in verse though. It didn't really add anything to the story, given that the language was not very lyrical or poetic. But it will probably interest reluctant readers with its ...more
Lola G
Mark wants a dog. Buddy's owner moves away. There's a lonely old man who lives alone in a mansion. Their paths cross.
It was a great book. I like animal books and this book was no exception.

This book is on the 2014 Children's Sequoyah Book
Award list for 2014. It is written in blank verse and is a quick read. Young readers will like it because is it the story of Mark who wants a dog when his mother says he can't have one. Enter Buddy who has gone to live with a "salt-and-pepper-haired" lady who has half-heartedly taken in when Buddy's family moves to a city apartment-building and can't keep him. Mark ad his friends lead a campaign to get a city dog park which means they have to pre
Christopher Noh
I recommend the book "Little Dog Lost" to elementary and middle school students because the vocabulary in this book is quite easy and it's a perfect book to read before going to bed. This book was very interesting, attracting and cute because in my case I had the same feelings that the main character had. The main character, Mark really wants a dog because of loneliness in this book but her mom doesn't buy him one because they make extra work and they mess up the house, although I have a dog, I ...more
This book is told in verse, which really sets a cool tone. It's heartbreakingly beautiful in the pain of the little dog separated from her boy, but you know by the parallel stories that there will be many resolutions, and the book delivers on that promise. I love happy, triumphant endings, and this book has a great one! And there's a cat named Fido - bonus!

A lovely excerpt:

So much longing
So many lives
with longing.

It's what stories-
all our stories-
are made of.

And what is longing
made of
I greatly enjoyed this book. I'm so glad the spine stuck out at me at the library urging me to check it out. The story seems so simple, but has so many underlying themes. It would be great for reluctant readers or early mg readers, but I think older mg readers might like it as well. As an author, it was a great lesson in description and subtle yet powerful word choices. The more and more I read novels in verse, the more I enjoy their type of storytelling, and realize how hard they must be to wri ...more

"But nothing,
not even the sweetest love,
can be certain
of lasting

Little Dog, Lost, P. 3

What does longing feel like? What makes up the urge we recognize within ourselves as longing, both when it's gentle, sweet, a soft tug on our hearts in the direction we feel inclined to go, and also when its desperation is darker and stronger, a storm of unstable inner intensity that will not be quieted by anything short of receiving the object of our longing, the catalyst behind the swirling
Buddy is a little black dog with four brown paws and a brown mask. She has a ruffle of fur beneath her whip of a tail and ears like airplane wings that droop just so at the tips. Her coat is satiny smooth. She used to have a boy who loved her and took care of her, but now she is a lost little dog who only hears “Hey you!” and “Shoo!”

Mark is a boy who lives with his mom, the mayor of Erthly. He has no dad so mostly he is home alone. He is cared for and planned for but alone. He wishes for a dog -
Ms. Yingling
Mark has always wanted a dog, but his overworked, single mother has always said "NO!" very firmly. He decides that since he can't have a dog, he should get the town where he lives (and where his mother is mayor) to put in a dog park so that at least the dogs he knows are happy. At the same time, Buddy the dog is left with a woman in town by his loving boy who has to move to the city. While the woman takes care of his needs, she doesn't understand Buddy, who know that her boy is out there somewhe ...more
Deb Tyo
Marion Dane Bauer’s recent book, a novel in verse, is one that all children will love. Little Dog, Lost is about Buddy…

“Little black dog with brown paws
and a brown mask
and a sweet ruffle of brown fur on her bum
just beneath her black whip of a tail.
Satiny coat.
Ears like airplane wings
that drop
just at the tips.”

Buddy once had a family. She had a boy, a mom, a dad, grandparents, aunts and uncles, too. But her family has to move to the city. Buddy is left with a strange woman who doesn't see
Buddy is ecstatically happy with her boy. He throws her ball, chases her and gives her kisses. But one day her boy is very sad and they leave their house with lots of stuff in the car. Buddy is left with a little old lady who's nice enough but is not her boy.

Buddy is not happy in her new home. No one plays with her or scratches her ear. And she gets yelled at a lot. Buddy breaks out of her new home and goes looking for her boy.

In the meantime, Mark, the mayor's son, has been bugging and bugging
To start with, I only picked this book up at the library because the cover illustration caught my eye, and I vaguely recalled reading Bauer's book Runt and thinking it was all right. I was rushing and skimmed the summary on the cover and checked it out with hardly a flip through the pages. Somehow I failed to notice it was written in verse.

I like a lot of poetry, but thinking about it, there isn't a lot of free verse stuff I like? And what I do like tends to be short poems. Most of the time the
I love novels in verse for reluctant readers who are daunted by longer novels. Still rich with vocabulary, imagery and poetic language, the novel in verse captures story of both dog-who-needs-boy and boy-who-needs-dog as well as lonely, misunderstood elder neighbor. She gives a decent story, although characters fairly simplistically drawn. I think students will relate with Mark and cheer for the little brown dog in an achievable read for many students. I look forward to recommending it.
4th, 5th, 6th, 3rd I loved reading this book! The style of Bauer's writing gets the reader straight to the emotions swirling through the characters' lives. Mark longs for a dog-having no father, siblings or cousins close enough to count. Buddy, the dog with "brown paws and a brown mask and a sweet ruffle of fur on her bum just beneath her black whip of a tail," has been given away to a woman (that knows nothing about dogs), after her boy had to move to the city. And Mr. Larue who lives alone in ...more
Jul 06, 2014 Marcia rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Marcia by: MCBA
Lonely people long for a pet to fill the empty void. Boy wants a dog. Dog wants a boy.Common themes are shared in this easy, breezy story. I love a well done story in verse, but this one just seemed to simplify the narrative in its sparse word choice leaving nothing to sink your teeth into. Cute drawings throughout will appeal to a younger audience. A good third grade choice, but as a MCBA nominee, not a contender.
Vincent Desjardins
Anyone who has ever desperately wanted a dog will identify with Mark, the protagonist in Marion Dane Bauer’s sweet novel written in verse. Mark is an only child who has wanted a dog for as long as he can remember, but his mother has always refused his request telling him that “Puppies piddle,” and “Puppies chew.” The author intertwines Mark’s story with that of several other characters including that of Buddy, a dog who once had a boy of her own but, through various circumstances, ends up being ...more
When Buddy's family finds her a home since they are moving to an apartment and can't have a dog, she misses her boy a great deal. To add to her misery, her new owner seems to know little about how to take care of a dog. Buddy digs a hole under the fence that surrounds the yard, and ends up hanging out on the street. But there's another boy in her small town, a boy named Mark, who is desperately seeking an animal companion, and Buddy just might fill the bill. This heart-tugging story describes th ...more
Taylor E
This book is a loving story built in poetic form. It is a adventurous tale of a puppy's journey from a little boy, and to a new little boy of her own.
Buddy, is lost. Lost in the village, lost in the world, lost in herself. But she wanders into Mark's town, trying to find her home. All Buddy wants is a little boy of her own.
All that Mark wants and needs is a dog of his own. A dog to jump up on his bed with him. A dog to lay by him while he completes his homework. A dog to have like all of his fr
Karen Arendt
Beautifully written story of a dog named Buddy who is given away when his owners move to an apartment. Buddy's new owner is nice enough, but does not know what to do with a dog. As a result, Buddy becomes unhappy, eats less and less, then runs away. Meanwhile, a boy named Mark wants a dog more than anything else, but mom always says no. A third part of the story is an older man named Charles LaRue who has spent his life taking care of an elderly woman. She passed away. left the house to LaRue, a ...more
Little Dog, Lost is written in prose. A dog is living in the country with her owners. She is loved and well cared for until the family has to move to the city. They leave her with an older woman in a small town who doesn’t really like dogs or know how to care for them. Meanwhile, Mark, a boy in town has always wanted a dog. His mother is afraid of dogs and will not allow him to own one. The dog digs his way under the fence and goes looking for his old owner. Mark decides to go to the town counci ...more
Joanne Palin
I don't get why this was written in the form of a poem. It read like a story...a very quick story. Nonetheless, it was a heartwarming and delightful tale of a boy, a misunderstood recluse, and a lost puppy who all hope for something and find that they can all help each other and all get what they desire.
This book is up for the 2015 Nene Award. Very very easy read. I finished it in one day. Written in a poem style but not rhyming. Very cute story from 3 points of view. Common theme of all 3 characters having a unfulfilled need, a longing. Sweet ending. Great story for animal lovers.

Conversation topics: (there is a group reading guide at the back) pets, meaning of longing for something, communicating your wants or needs with others, cooperation
I know it was written by Ms. Bauer, and for that I wanted to love it. However, I just didn't. I think the artwork is what makes it confusing for appropriate age level -- the book cover and illustrations are more picture book, but the vocabulary and content are higher level, it seems to me. I suppose as a read aloud, with adult perhaps filling in gaps or explaining something, children may enjoy it. I just don't really see many kids picking it up; unless they love dogs. And that is one reason I di ...more
A boy desperately wants a dog and his mother says, NO! Can he change her mind? The boy is persistent and a problem solver. This is a quick read and a good book to show how a town council works and how people made their ideas known to their town leaders. Precious!
A sweet story about wanting a pet to love more than anything and finding the bravery in yourself to make it happen.

Mark loves everything about dogs and he knows everything about dogs. He has wanted one ever since he could remember, but his mother has always said no.
Buddy had a boy that loved her and a family that took care of her. Then they moved away and left her with a woman who knew nothing about dogs. Buddy did the only thing she could think of- she ran away to find her owner.
Mark did the on
Cordelia Dinsmore
The title and cover art lured me into picking this one, and I am so glad it did. Ms. Bauer manages to pack so much emotion and so much story into a sparsely written text that is quick and easy to maneuver. I read the entire book in one short setting, and think the style and simplicity of language would be very suitable and appealing to reluctant readers.

The story is one of love and longing, and manages to weave the lives of three needy souls into a tale of realized dreams. The predictability of
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Marion Dane Bauer is the author of more than eighty books for young people, ranging from novelty and picture books through early readers, both fiction and nonfiction, books on writing, and middle-grade and young-adult novels. She has won numerous awards, including several Minnesota Book Awards, a Jane Addams Peace Association Award for RAIN OF FIRE, an American Library Association Newbery Honor Aw ...more
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“So much longing.
So many lives
with longing.

It's what stories―
all our stories―
are made of.

And what is longing
made of
except hope?”
“But never
in his saddest dreams
had he thought he'd spend
his last years
this enormous old house
for no one
at all.”
More quotes…