Peacegal's Reviews > Lady Cool

Lady Cool by Marie Brewer
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's review
Jan 01, 2012

did not like it

** spoiler alert ** Lots of typos and poor snapshots define this free e-book "narrated" by the titular 65-pound, brindle pit bull terrier. It's a book that struggles to find its audience--it contains very simplistic facts about dogs (such as how they use their eyes to see and noses to smell), as well as out-of-place lessons like "Good hygiene can help keep us healthy!" However, children learning such simplistic facts would likely be overwhelmed by some of the more complex ideas.

Such as, the author's belief that her dog can feel the effects of prejudice.

Some people don't like me because of the name that somebody gave me. Pit Bull. What is that? Does it mean fear? That is a name that humans gave to me.

No, it's a catch-all term for "gripping dogs" bred for a similar task: to battle other animals (first bulls, then other dogs) in a fighting pit.

My brain is small and does not understand when people act afraid in my presence.(only a few)They don't know me. I have not growled at one human since I have been alive. I have a small brain and do not know that people hate me for no reason.[sic]

Perhaps Lady Cool is indeed a fine and gentle dog, with none of the "gameness" that has defined her breed. However, it seems rather unethical to lay this grandstanding on children, who have the most to lose from approaching strange dogs out of the mistaken belief that they all must be as kind and misunderstood as the one in this book. 33 fatal dog attacks occured in the US in 2010, 20 of them on children 11 years old and under; 67% of the offending dogs were guess what breed.

I cannot speak for other dogs, but I do not know how to fight.

And a greyhound might not know how to run fast and a Labrador might not know how to retrieve, but put 'em in the right situation and you might be surprised how those genes start working. Responsible pit bull groups are aware of this and alert owners accordingly. The Phoenix Rescue group states:

Never trust a pit bull not to fight. It is not a hate of other dogs that causes pit bulls to fight, but rather an "urge" to do so that has been bred into the dogs for many generations. Pit bulls may fight over hierarchic status, but external stimulus or excitement can also trigger a fight. Remember that any canine can fight, but pit bulls were bred specifically for their drive, intensity, and determination to win.

Pit bull owners must be aware of the remarkable fighting abilities these dogs posses and always keep in mind that pit bulls have the potential to inflict serious injury to other animals. A pit bull may not even be the one starting a conflict, but he has the genetics to finish it.

Countless other groups have similarly-worded statements.

Some passages in this book unwittingly showcase problematic behavior. Early on, we see the famed "escape artist" ability when Lady Cool wriggles under a fence to get at a rabbit. Later, we read how she will "pull and pull" on her leash, but her owner always "manages" to hold her back. When an escaped pit bull "charges" Lady Cool, they stare each other down but then begin playing. The author concludes,

I have never met a dog or human I didn't like. Can you say the same?

A better statement would be: "I'm a nice dog, but not all dogs are, so please don't approach ANY strange dog without first asking the owner. I've been bred to not get along with other dogs, so it's good for my owner and those with dogs like me to handle us responsibly at ALL times, and not put us in situations with dogs we don't know, even if we at first seem to get along."


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