Reviews for Saving Audie : A Pit Bull Puppy Gets a Second Chance

Booklist Reviews 2011 March #1
Michael Vick may be back making millions in the NFL, but the pit bulls left behind by his infamous dog-fighting ring are still striding toward normalcy. The Bad Newz Kennels were raided in April 2007, and while Vick was sent to trial, the 49 pit bulls were moved into a shelter as evidence, after which they were scheduled to be put to sleep. But several animal-rights groups intervened, leading to six months of socialization tests. The results surprised everyone, writes Patent--all but one was ruled safe. Once landing with a family in San Francisco, the black puppy known as Number 86 was renamed after WWII war hero Audie Murphy and then underwent knee surgery--paid for by a fund created by Vick--allowing it to begin agility training. Muñoz's photographs range from moody (the opening spread of Audie cowering in the dark) to adorable (Audie wearing striped pants postsurgery). Patent wrings emotion from her understated text and remains nonjudgmental about Vick's reemergence. Interest in the case, plus strong back matter, makes this a must-have. Copyright 2011 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2011 Fall
Patent tells the story of puppy Audie, one of forty-nine dogs rescued from NFL player Michael Vick's Bad Newz Kennels in 2007. The text describes Audie's physical and behavioral rehabilitation, his socialization, and his participation in agility work; the writing is mostly straightforward with some anthropomorphizing ("Audie loves to see his Vick dog friends"). Vivid photographs accompany the text. Reading list, timeline, websites. Copyright 2011 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2011 April #1

What happens to the dogs when dogfighting rings are broken up and the trials are over? Typically, the dogs are put to sleep, thought to be too dangerous to re-enter society. Because of the wide publicity of the Michael Vick case, animal activists were able to work to rescue all but one of his dogs; this is the story of one that survived. The little black pit bull puppy, later named after World War II hero Audie Murphy, thrives in his foster home. Soon he goes to live with a family that wants to train him for agility competitions. Audie needs surgery on his bad knees though, so not only does he still need to learn how to be a safe and social dog, he also has to recover from an operation. Audie goes through Canine Good Citizen classes and does so well he eventually helps train other dogs. He also excels in his agility training once his knees have healed. Color photographs chronicling Audie's journey are placed on vibrantly colored pages; Muñoz captures the dog's personality in frame after frame. Patent's text is straightforward, expertly providing just the right level of background and choosing kid-friendly details to illustrate Audie's experiences. Ample backmatter provides further background and resources. Audie's inspirational story is a case study in rehabilitation, one sure to appeal to animal loving children. (Nonfiction. 8-11)

Copyright Kirkus 2011 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2011 March #2

This polished photo-essay by frequent collaborators Patent and Muñoz (The Right Dog for the Job) will tug at the heartstrings of readers--especially those sympathetic to the plight of the often-maligned pit bull. In cogent, conversational prose, the author chronicles the rehabilitation journey of one of the dogs rescued in 2007 from NFL quarterback Michael Vick's illegal dogfighting operation. Named Audie by his eventual owners, the dog first spent months caged in a shelter until animal rights groups successfully petitioned the courts to allow the rescued pit bulls to be tested to determine if they were safe to handle. Placed in a permanent home, Audie gradually learned to trust people and get along with other dogs. After undergoing knee surgery, he began training for agility competition and, in a satisfying cap to his success story, now acts as a "canine coach," helping shy and fearful dogs. Muñoz's crisp, candid photos include many endearing shots of Audie--both solo and interacting with humans and other rescued dogs. Bright backgrounds and captionlike commentary keep this uplifting and informational book lively. Ages 6-9. (May)

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School Library Journal Reviews 2011 May

Gr 2-5--This is the story of one dog's journey from NFL star Quarterback Michael Vick's insidious dog-fighting kennel to a good home. With the help of animal-rights groups like the ASPCA and BAD RAP (Bay Area Doglovers Responsible About Pit Bulls), Audie was tested, trained, and taken into foster care. His foster family identified his needs and potential, and continued his training until they found Linda and William, who loved and adopted him. Patent and Muñoz bring to life each step of progress and show how the bandy-legged, shoe-chewing puppy grew and graduated from Canine Good Citizen and obedience classes. Due to court-ordered reparations pertaining to the Vick case, the pup received knee surgery that allowed him to participate in agility work that turned out to be one of his talents. From cowering against a wall to learning self-esteem, the pit bull became a coach to other dogs learning to live with people and animals. This book has a positive impact to counteract the myths about the breed. The back matter includes information about pit bulls, BAD RAP, advocates of the breed, the Vick case time line, and a list "for further reading and surfing."--Nancy Call, Santa Cruz Public Libraries, Aptos, CA

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