Animal Emergency #7: Hit-and-Run Retriever

Overview

Pets in Peril? It's Stella to the rescue!

On each of the first three days of school, Stella is late because of a wounded or sick animal, and her teacher is not at all pleased. But Stella must find the time to help a wounded turtle, a gravely ill cat, and a golden retriever that's been hit by a truck. What's more, she's beginning to realize that somebody needs to do something about the bend in the road where the dog was injured: It's unsafe for animals, and maybe for people, ...

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Overview

Pets in Peril? It's Stella to the rescue!

On each of the first three days of school, Stella is late because of a wounded or sick animal, and her teacher is not at all pleased. But Stella must find the time to help a wounded turtle, a gravely ill cat, and a golden retriever that's been hit by a truck. What's more, she's beginning to realize that somebody needs to do something about the bend in the road where the dog was injured: It's unsafe for animals, and maybe for people, too. Stella, her friends, and her veterinarian aunt, Anya, save the animals in Gateway, Montana, in one exciting new adventure after another.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780380816002
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/30/2000
  • Series: Animal Emergency Series , #7
  • Edition description: 1ST AVON E
  • Pages: 128
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.12 (w) x 7.50 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Emily Costello is a journalist and the author of many books for young readers, including books in the Nancy Drew, Sweet Valley Twins, and Sweet Valley Kids series, as well as her own series on ballet school and girls soccer. She writes about science for Scholastic's classroom publications. She lives in Boston, MA.

Larry Day grew up in a small town in central Illinois with five train lines but no floating icebergs. He is the recipient of the Golden Kite Award for best illustrated picture book for Not Afraid of Dogs by Susanna Pitzer. His books have received many starred reviews.

Day has worked as a storyboard artist for a large advertising agency in Chicago since 1987 and has drawn storyboards for such clients as Walt Disney and Hallmark.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Stella Sullivan was grumpy.

Somehow, summer was already over.

It was the first day of school.

Stella liked school-that wasn't the problem. The problem was Rufus, Stellas puppy. She couldn't stand the idea of leaving him alone all day.

So Stella was sitting on the kitchen floor, hiding her face in Rufus's fur and trying to pretend it was June-not September.

Rufus knew Stella was unhappy. He kept twisting around and licking her face with his tiny pink tongue. Getting licked made Stella giggle, but it didn't stop her from feeling grumpy.

Rufus was a small dog-about the size of a Maltese or a miniature poodle. Nobody was exctly sure what breed he was because he had been abandoned at a rest stop when he was just two weeks old.

Stella had adopted Rufus right around the time school let out that spring. They had spent practically the whole summer together. Over the summer, Rufus had grown into a sleek, healthy dog.

"Come eat your cereal, Muffin," Stellas mom, Norma, said from her spot at the kitchen table. "You don't want to be late."

"Why not?" asked Cora, Stella's big sister. "I want to be late."

"I'm not going to school," Stella said. "Rufus will die of loneliness without me."

Norma sighed and yawned. "Don't be so dramatic so early in the morning," she said. "Come on, Stella. Get a move on. You only have ten minutes to eat."

"What about Rufus?"

"He'll be fine for a few hours while you're at school," Norma said.

"Cereal," Stella's dad, Jack, said. "Now."

Reluctantly, Stella went to sit at the table. She ate, made her lunch, and put on her shoes. The very last thingStella did before leaving was give Rufus a kiss on his sweet furry face.

"Be a good dog," she told him. "I'll be home right after school."

Rufas trotted after Stella to the kitchen door.

Stella stepped outside.

Rufus tried to follow.

Stella pushed the dog back with her toe and quickly slammed the door. She could hear Rufus barking sharply as she galloped down the back steps and pulled her bike out of the shed.

It was a sad bark.

School stinks, Stella thought. But she steeled herself, hopped on her bike, and headed toward school.

Route 2A was peaceful in the early-morning sunshine. The leaves on the aspen trees that lined the road were still green.

Stella rode down to the junction and stopped, at the stop sign. Trucks and RVs were whipping down Route 98-the road that led into town.

Stella made the right turn, being careful to stay on the shoulder of the road. She stood up on her pedals and pushed the bike faster, anxious to get the ride over with.

Riding on Route 98 scared her a little especially in the summer when there were so many campers and sport utility vehicles coming hi and out of Goldenrock.

Goldenrock was the national park that surrounded Stella's hometown of Gateway, Montana. The park attracted tourists from all over the country. They came into Gateway to eat, buy groceries or get fishing licenses.

Lots of the drivers on Route 98 went way too fast--even though the speed limit was only twenty-five miles per hour.

Stella rode hard for five minutes with trucks and campers zipping by on her left-hand side. She passed a sign that read WELCOME TO GATEWAY, MONTANA. POPULATION: 9,812.

Just past the sign was a sharp bend in the road. Stella followed the bend. A few feet further on, she spotted something in the road.

Stella slowed her bike, squinting at ... whatever it was. Oh. A turtle!

He was on the double yellow line, facing Stella's side of the road. She could make out the yellowand-brown dome of the turtle's shell. As she watched, his thumblike head appeared. Then four flat legs. He started to crawl slowly toward Stella

WWWHOOOSH!

"Ah!" Stella screamed. She jumped back as a big white camper barreled down the road.

A moment later, the camper was gone. The turtle was still in the road.

Stella couldn't see if any more cars or trucks were coming. The bend in the road cut off her view.

She listened. She couldn't hear any cars.

Stella took a deep breath, dashed into the road, and looked down-at-the turtle.

He'd drawn his head almost completely back in his shell. And he had withdrawn his legs. Now Stella could see that the turtle was injured. His shell looked like a mashed M&M.

Had the camper that had just passed hit himor a car that came before?

Stella wasn't sure.

It didn't matter.

What was important was getting the turtle off the road.

Stella hesitated. What if she picked up the turtle, and his shell fell completely off.? Would that kill him? She couldn't remember ever seeing a turtle without his shell.

A low humming. A car was coming!

Stella dashed off the road.

WWWHOOOSH!

An enormous truck came barreling around the bend. Stella closed her eyes as the truck passed. She opened them cautiously.

The turtle was still there. Apparently, the truck had passed right by it.

Do something! Stella told herself. Now.

Everything was quiet.

She ran back into the road. Gritting her teeth, she picked up the turtle.

Nothing bad happened.

The turtle tried to pull his head inside, but that was impossible with his smashed shell. Poor guy. Stella hurried back to her bike and climbed on.

She cradled the turtle in one hand and steered the bike with the other. Two minutes later, she pulled up outside her Aunt Anya's animal clinic.

She left her bike on the front lawn and rushed inside. "Aunt Anya!"

Anya was Gateway's one and only veterinarian. That meant she was one busy lady. She spent most of her time on the big cattle ranches that were spread out across the county, giving vaccines to cows and caring for horses.

Animal Emergency #7: Hit-and-Run Retriever. Copyright © by Emily Costello. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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