Dogged Pursuit: My Year of Competing Dusty, the World's Least Likely Agility Dog

Overview

Best in Show meets Marley and Me in the hilarious (mis)adventures of an unlikely duo competing for glory on the pro dog circuit

An urban intellectual and a scruffy, disobedient Sheltie team up to conquer the Canine Agility pro-circuit in this hysterical account of the quest for glory in the competitive dog world. A cousin to the popular best-in-breed show, agility competitions resemble doggie boot camp: dogs scamper across teeter-totters, jump tires, and scoot down ...

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2009 Hard cover Book Club Edition. New in new dust jacket. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. With dust jacket. 273 p.

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Dogged Pursuit: How a Rescue Dog Rescued Me

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Overview

Best in Show meets Marley and Me in the hilarious (mis)adventures of an unlikely duo competing for glory on the pro dog circuit

An urban intellectual and a scruffy, disobedient Sheltie team up to conquer the Canine Agility pro-circuit in this hysterical account of the quest for glory in the competitive dog world. A cousin to the popular best-in-breed show, agility competitions resemble doggie boot camp: dogs scamper across teeter-totters, jump tires, and scoot down tunnels-without leashed guidance from a human. Taking home ribbons requires a focused handler and a cooperative dog.

Robert Rodi is a self-proclaimed Blue-stater who prefers fine wine and Italian literature (in Italian) to SUVs and suburban sprawl. His dog Dusty's scrawny build and skittish personality make him an unnatural competitor. Nevertheless, Rodi recounts a year filled with victories, failures, and hysterical personalities, and the loving bond between one man and his bug-eyed dog.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594630545
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 6/11/2009
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 9.38 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 1.05 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert Rodi is the owner of three dogs and the author of seven novels. He's also written short stories, literary criticism, and works for the stage. He divides his time between Chicago, where he was born, and Siena, Italy. In dog years he is 350.

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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 25, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Hilarious and Full of Heart

    This book really sneaks up on you. Though I was laughing from the get-go, there were also pages that had me in tears. Rodi's memoir is full of heart, not only for his dogs but especially the people that would never have entered his life, if not for his canine adventures. Even if you're not a dog nut, "Dogged Pursuit" still makes for a great read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 16, 2009

    Hilarious and well written

    Being an agility enthusiast, I had to pick up this book - and so glad I did. The author brings this world of competitors, camaraderie, characters and dog fur to life with hilarity and sensitivity. This book manages to put into words what so many of us have realized- that working closely with a beloved dog creates such a deep bond, and is full of wonderful surprises; that we are not really training the animal; we are training ourselves to work with the dog. In doing so, we are so lucky to oftentimes develop a deeper understanding of their behavior and emotions, as well as an appreciation of the gifts they give us. Mr. Rodi, for all of his fancy tastes and appreciation of culture, acknowledges that some of the simpler pleasures (a smiling dog; surprise support, quick weave poles!) are really the stuff and wonder of life.
    The author shows us what the agility world has to offer - not just the ribbon obsession- but the lessons one learns from other people, and from their 'furpeople'- and how funny they are!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Gotta love them pups...

    Rodi is completely crazy, but he does get a laugh every chapter or so. This is a good read for other crazy people who entertain the idea that your dog may like to get out and run an obstacle course every other day. Also a good book for those with short attention spans or schedules broken into little segments. You can read to a laugh and put it down on a high note every couple pages. Keeps you coming back.

    At the end, I was rooting for Dusty and Rodi as though they were relatives--that must be the "group-thing", or community, that Rodi talks about. It seems his insight is useful to all of us in our daily lives: "...acceptance isn't something you wait for--it's something you actively claim. And more importantly, something you give."

    Whatever. I was belly-laughing by the end, and wishing that I 1) had a dog, and 2) had an agility location near me. As a matter of fact, a relative of mine has a dog that is just the right size and temperament, and I've already started searching agility centers...I am not interested in competition, but the exercise and mental focus (for the pet) sounds like just the ticket.

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