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A Day, a Dog

4.23  ·  Rating Details  ·  104 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
An abandoned dog's life ends in a triumph of resourcefulness in this wordless picture book.
Hardcover, 72 pages
Published November 10th 1999 by Front Street, Incorporated (first published 1986)
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The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth SteinMarley and Me by John GroganA Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce CameronWhere the Red Fern Grows by Wilson RawlsThe Call of the Wild by Jack London
Great "Dog" Books
302nd out of 792 books — 1,513 voters
A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce CameronIf I Should Die Before My Dog -- by Joe ConnollyThe Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth SteinMarley and Me by John GroganThe Call of the Wild by Jack London
Dog Lovers
106th out of 403 books — 492 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 182)
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Aug 26, 2014 arcobaleno rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cristina
Un silent book molto comunicativo. Con la sola forza di immagini essenziali, a veloci tratti in bianco e nero, esprime la tristezza di un abbandono. Affascinante e suggestivo. Triste e dolce insieme.
Dec 03, 2015 Blake rated it liked it
it was OK. there are no words and no color and the pictures don't have much detail but it has a good story. I think I like the Ernest and Celeste stories by this author more than this book but I got it on Amazon for a dollar so can't complain.
Amanda Pemberton
Oct 18, 2014 Amanda Pemberton rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books4children
This pictures only book is absolutely priceless. The black and white drawings are both simple and complex at the same time. One day in an abandoned dogs life is portrayed all in pictures, from being thrown from a car, to causing a wreck, wreaking havoc, wandering and lonely, to finding a new friend...a great story for all ages.
Syndi Flores
Nov 19, 2014 Syndi Flores rated it really liked it
This story is told in all pictures. It can be interpreted in many ways. This story seems to start out with a dog getting left behind and the dog decides to follow till the car out runs him. Even though he is left all alone, the dog still tries it's best to follow the family that left him behind. In search of that family he doesn't notice cars and causes many car accidents. The dog doesn't really let anyone get near him. Despite having caused some accidents, the dog continues his mission to find ...more
Beth K.
Nov 03, 2009 Beth K. rated it did not like it
Spoiler Alert

Ok, the illustrations in this book are fabulous and incredibly moving. The ones of the dog, particularly so, BUT it's totally depressing. Heart-wrenching! The illustrator is just too good.

Even though the ending is "happy", it's not certain if the dog gets to stay with the boy or not. Good god, don't share this with your children.
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
Jul 08, 2011 Randie D. Camp, M.S. rated it really liked it
Vincent, Gabrielle. (1999). a day, a dog. Asheville, NC: Front Street.

Annotation: For children in fifth grade and up. Vincent Gabrielle’s simple pencil sketches tell the story of an abandoned dog. The colorless sketches are straight forward, yet they still allow the sophisticated child to tell the story in great descriptive detail. As the dog travels along the reader follows the sketches to the next page to see what will happen to the dog next. In the end, the dog encounters a boy and the child
Kathleen Behrendt
This wordless story is told through expressive charcoal drawings. The first drawing of the dog being tossed from the car is heartbreaking. The dog runs after the car, but can't cath up. To me, the most disturbing picture is of the driver looking back at the dog - with others in the car - and speeding away. The dog is confused and lonely. The story does have a happy ending, though - the dog finds a child to love! This is not a story for a young child to read alone, but don't shy away from sharing ...more
Jan 06, 2013 Peacegal rated it really liked it
Shelves: humane-education
At first, the scribbly illustrations in this wordless book may look hard to decipher, but look closer, and you'll see the diamond in the rough. This is a beautiful and affecting little story in which a dog makes his way through a confusing and frightening world after being abandoned along a roadside.

A Day, a Dog urges readers to look at the plight of an abandoned pet with empathy. It ends on a hopeful, but not completely unrealistic, note. Although the the illustrations have a rough, sketchbook
Judy Lindow
Nov 12, 2013 Judy Lindow rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
A very good story. Very important subject matter that is difficult but useful for preteens. I would definitely consider using this, especially with older kids ( 4-5th graders).

Ironically I checked it out for the gentle and simple graphite drawings that display so much with so few strokes. Initially I thought, there's not enough here, where's the story? Then, I began to understand how sad it was that this dog was abandoned ... the subject matter became more complex the more I looked and thought
Mar 29, 2013 Angelica rated it really liked it
Completely wordless the story pretty much is about how the dog's owner leaves him behind. So the dog goes about his day. Left on a road and abandoned the dog walks and winds up running across the road and causes an accident. The dog seems like he is trying to help but winds up being a burden. So he continues his journey and finds a town but he is not welcome. Finally the owners come back for him but the dog is unsure if he's wanted but the owner is excited to see him.

Pretty much, plain and simp
May 04, 2013 Brigida rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-books
How often do you find yourself giving up on a loved one be it animal or person for whatever reason and not care what happens to them? How often do you look back in regret and think what have I done? Unfortunately, in this story, this family take a trip and throws a dog out of the car. They don't even bother to look back to see if he is okay. They leave the poor dog to fend for itself. This dog roams around and inadvertently causes a severe car wreck. When will things look up for him? When will s ...more
Maeve Mcgill
Feb 03, 2016 Maeve Mcgill marked it as to-read
Shelves: fiction
This book is heart-wrenching and unique. With no words and only black and white drawings we are free to fill in the missing pieces. It begins with a dog being abandoned by what we think are the dog's owners. We then predict that the dog is lonely and sad. The dog wrecks havoc in town and causes problems but ends up finding a boy who gives him hope. I would not recommend children to read this book by themselves, especially at an early age. This book is probably better for grades 5 and up in teach ...more
Amber Jenstad
Feb 13, 2013 Amber Jenstad rated it it was amazing
This wordless picture book is great to read to children. It is simple enough for them to understand and they can come up with their own sentences. I love how it tells a story without one word. The story ends up happy, but starts out sad. I love this book because everyone can take it in a different way. An activity you could do in your classroom is show everyone this book and then have them write a story about what they think happened in the book. That way you can see all the different versions o ...more
Marissa García
This minimalistic, wordless picture book packs a lot of power in its sparse charcoal illustrations, which tell the tale of a dog abandoned, frightened, and perhaps, found.

This is emotion much unlike the type a child will find in the average picture book. Emotions are often depicted with great volume in picture books, but here we see emotion that is both up for interpretation for the child and less easy to identify with a simple label like "sad" or "mad".

Suggest to patrons looking for wordless p
Marissa Garcia
Jun 19, 2013 Marissa Garcia rated it it was amazing
This minimalistic, wordless picture book packs a lot of power in its sparse charcoal illustrations, which tell the tale of a dog abandoned, frightened, and perhaps, found.

This is emotion much unlike the type a child will find in the average picture book. Emotions are often depicted with great volume in picture books, but here we see emotion that is both up for interpretation for the child and less easy to identify with a simple label like "sad" or "mad".

Suggest to patrons looking for wordless p
May 11, 2014 Artemis rated it really liked it
A thought-provoking picture book!
Aug 20, 2015 Meegan rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
This book appealed to me because it was about a dog. It wasn’t until I had brought it home from the library that I realized there were no words. But the lack of words make this a great picture book for children of all ages. The simple sketches show the wanderings of the dog without a complex story. This book could also come in handy in the classroom for an exercise where the teacher asks the students to write words for the pictures. This exercise could be used in elementary school all the way up ...more
Oct 09, 2012 Sally rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-book
Brilliant concept (line drawings only, no words or color), and well-executed, but harsh subject matter. A dog is left (abandoned? for the day?), causes and is desperately confused by a multi-car-accident, wanders endlessly, and finds a boy at the end. Sad, slightly disturbing for the unprepared. Not for very young children without adult support, in my opinion.
LaRaie Zimm
This is a fiction picture book about one amazing day in the life of a dog. The story is told evocatively, without words, and beautifully illustrated in pencil. This book would be suitable for children and adults. I would recommend this book to readers who are artists or would like a book that tells a story in an unusual way.

Jul 01, 2012 Queenmangin rated it it was amazing
Beautiful book of pictures.... showing how the simplest of brush strokes can tell an entire story. Simple black and white sketches filled with such emotion.... just a special little book. Me and my son found this in the children's section of the library and just loved it for its simplicity and its power.
Darrin Cayatineto
when reading this book I thought it was great for me and the students. when reading this book you can have a group discussion on what kind of animals you have at home. or if they don't have animals at home you can have them write a paragraph or so on what kind of animal they would like to have in the future.
Nov 30, 2010 Leigh rated it it was amazing
Poignant wordless picture book about an abandoned dog trying to find a new home. The black and white pencil drawings are amazing, telling the whole story and evoking an emotional response with just a few strokes. A story that will stay with you for a long time.
Lynn Siler
Jul 18, 2009 Lynn Siler rated it it was amazing
The drawings are absolutely amazing--so much information and emotion are conveyed with just a few pencil (charcoal?) marks! A regrettably accurate portrait of our society's view of disposable pets and how one particular disposable pet reacts to being disposed of.
Once you get past the story (it tugs at your heart), and are able to really see the drawings, you will be blown away. This book most poignantly illustrates the power of a line - even underlining the simple power of a scribble. One of my all time top favs.
Apr 24, 2012 Vivian rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
a heartbreaking story about "what is not seen". A family abandons their dog by the side of the road. Black and white pencil sketches unadorned with words follows the events which ensue.
Jan 05, 2012 Belaam rated it really liked it
Not a single word in this book, but still a good story.

Simple pencil sketches about a critical day in the life of a dog.

May use it to teach narrative at some point.
Aug 09, 2009 Kelsey added it
This is such a great book, and one I can relate to. I have a puppy who I rescued from the side of the freeway.

*picture book
Shala Howell
Sep 28, 2007 Shala Howell rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens-books
Pictures show a rather tragic day. Reserve this one for older kids or enjoy it yourself. The drawings are amazing.
Oct 21, 2009 Stephanie rated it really liked it
Beautifully done illustrations.. they are so simple, but so artistic. I love it!
Sep 19, 2011 Patty rated it liked it

I read this today, and I'm not sure how to rate it. Provocative and melancholy.
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