Daisy to the Rescue: True Stories of Daring Dogs, Paramedic Parrots, and Other Animal Heroes

Daisy to the Rescue: True Stories of Daring Dogs, Paramedic Parrots, and Other Animal Heroes

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Overview

Who rescued who? This popular animal-shelter bumper sticker captures an enduring emotional truth: With their love and companionship, animals save our lives every day. But sometimes, to our utter amazement and everlasting gratitude, animals literally save our lives, and this heartwarming book collects over fifty real-life stories of animals rescuing people, in which their bravery and compassion have meant the difference between life and death.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781936976621
Publisher: Zest Books
Publication date: 10/07/2014
Pages: 336
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 14 - 18 Years

About the Author

Jeff Campbell is a freelance writer and book editor. For twelve years he was a travel writer for Lonely Planet, coauthoring guidebooks on Hawaii, Florida, the Southwest, and other US destinations. As an editor for the past twenty years, he has specialized in animal intelligence and emotions, among other topics. In particularly he has worked with Dr. Marc Bekoff on several books, such as the highly regarded The Emotional Lives of Animals. He also teaches creative writing to grade-school students. He lives with his wife, Deanna, and his children, Jackson and Miranda, in Morristown, New Jersey.

Read an Excerpt

LuLu the Pot-Bellied Pig Stops Traffic

Name: LuLu
Species: Vietnamese pot-bellied pig
Date: August 4, 1998
Location: Presque Isle, Pennsylvania
Situation: Woman suffering a heart attack
Who Was Saved: Jo Ann Altsman, 57-year-old wife and mother
Fame Meter: Hall-of-Famer

Quick: Which is smarter, a dog or a pig?
 Bzzzzz.
 Wrong.
 If you’re Jo Ann Altsman, or George Clooney for that matter, the answer is as simple as it is hard to miss. Pot-bellied pigs are the smartest, and you don’t need a bunch of scientific studies to prove it. Just listen to this:
 In August 1998, Jo Ann and Jack Altsman were summer vacationing on Presque Isle, Pennsylvania, a beautiful sandy peninsula that juts into Lake Erie. The couple had brought along their American Eskimo dog, Bear, and their pet Vietnamese pot-bellied pig, LuLu. A type of miniature pig, LuLu then weighed about 150 pounds, about the average adult weight.
 The Altsmans had originally purchased LuLu in 1997 as a fortieth birthday present for their daughter, Jackie. Imagine her surprise? Strangely enough, Jackie never got around to taking LuLu home, and as the four-pound piglet grew, so did the Altsmans’ love for her. They kept LuLu, and Jo Ann is eternally grateful they did.
 On the morning of August 4, while her husband was fishing on Lake Erie, Jo Ann suffered a heart attack in their vacation home. It was her second heart attack in eighteen months, and she fell to the floor, gasping, and couldn’t get up. Jo Ann threw an alarm clock through the window, breaking it, and yelled for help, but no one heard her.
 Meanwhile, her dog, Bear, was barking his fool head off, and LuLu “made sounds like she was crying,” Jo Ann said. “You know, they cry big, fat tears.”
 Then LuLu decided to do something. She crashed through the trailer’s doggie door--breaking it open wider but cutting her stomach in the process--knocked open the enclosed yard’s gate, and ran to an adjacent road.
 “I didn’t know that she knew that I was in dire trouble,” Jo Ann said. “I just kept telling her to go night-night.”
 Once at the street, as witnesses described later, LuLu decided to play “dead piggy.” This was one of LuLu’s favorite games, one in which “she knows she’ll get attention,” Jo Ann said. LuLu lay down in the middle of the road, forcing cars to drive around her.
 But no one would stop.
 So, for the next forty-five minutes, LuLu kept returning to the trailer to check on Jo Ann, and then returning to the road to play “dead piggy” until she got someone’s attention.
 What about Bear? The stupid dog just kept barking. 
 Finally, an anonymous man pulled over and got out of his car. Seeing the bloody injury on the animal’s flank, and concerned for her safety (and perhaps her sanity), he followed LuLu as the “little piggy” ran wee-wee-wee all the way home.
 “I heard a man hollering through the door, ‘Lady, your pig’s in distress,” Jo Ann recounted. “I said, ‘I’m in distress, too. Please call an ambulance.’”
 The man did, and Jo Ann was flown to a nearby medical center, where she had emergency open-heart surgery. Doctors told her that if another fifteen minutes had gone by, she probably would have died.
 How do you thank a pig who saves your life?
 “She got a jelly doughnut,” Jo Ann said.
 Of course. 
 
LuLu Is Loved to Death
Tragically, LuLu’s story doesn’t end there.
 As author E. B. White understood, when you have a terrific, radiant, humble pig, the whole world wants to meet them. Afterward, back at their Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, home, the Altsmans and LuLu were overwhelmed with media attention. The New York Times ran a front-page story. LuLu was featured in USA Today and People magazine. TV programs from Germany, Australia, Italy, and Japan came calling. National Geographic did a TV segment, and LuLu appeared on the Regis & Kathie Lee Show, The Late Show with David Letterman, and Oprah.
 Each year, the story never got old. Ripley’s Believe It or Not showed up, as did Animal Planet, the Discovery Channel, Good Morning America, and 20/20.
 The highlight, though, was most certainly meeting George Clooney and his own beloved pot-bellied pig, Max, when LuLu received the 1999 “Trooper Award” from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. It’s not clear whether LuLu and Max hit it off, but Clooney was smitten.
 After all, Clooney’s infatuation with his pig Max was by then famous. He had been known to lose girlfriends over his pet, whom he called “a big part of my life.” Clooney once said, “You get a lot of grief from people when you sleep with a pig. I’ve had different reaction over the years. But I always say, ‘Love me, love my pig.’ What can I do?”
 People certainly marveled at LuLu, and particularly at what her actions indicated about her intelligence and depth of feeling. Pigs have always been considered smart, but could a pig really understand what was at stake, respond creatively, and persist at it for nearly an hour? As Marc Bekoff said, “What LuLu did was amazing, but it would not be beyond the cognitive or intellectual power of a pig. She was on a mission.”
 But also, with each passing year, LuLu kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger. Four years later, by 2002, she had grown dangerously obese, ballooning to 335 pounds.
 “We put her on diets constantly,” Jo Ann said. But as LuLu had demonstrated, she was no dummy, and she liked to eat. “She’d sit at the gate and cry for people to feed her. Everyone thought they were the only ones.” Strangers fed her hamburgers, Pop-Tarts, ice cream, pizza, soda, candy--anything to thank this remarkable animal for what she’d done. 
 On January 30, 2003, LuLu died at home after suffering a heart attack, one that was most likely brought on by her weight. She died prematurely, at age five and half. Pot-bellied pigs have a life expectancy of twelve to twenty years.
 “She was the smartest, most special pig,” Jo Ann said. She and her husband contemplated getting a new pig, but “whatever we do,” she said, “we’ll never have another LuLu.”

Table of Contents

Foreword by Dr. Marc Bekoff............................................................... 8
INTRODUCTION ........................................................................ 12

PART ONE
DOMESTIC COMPANIONS
LuLu the Pot-Bellied Pig . . . Stops Traffic...................................... 27
Dory the Rabbit . . . leaps into action.............................................. 32
Mkombozi the Dog . . . Rescues an Abandoned Baby.................... 36
Frisky the Dog . . . Kisses His Owner.............................................. 41
Honey the Cocker Spaniel . . . Meets the Neighbors........................ 45
Shana the Half-Breed Wolf . . . Digs a Tunnel of Love..................... 49
Toby the Golden Retriever . . . Performs the Heimlich Maneuver.. 53
Khan the Doberman Pinscher . . . Tosses the Toddler..................... 58
Willie the Quaker Parrot . . . Learns a New Word.......................... 62
Inky the Cat . . . Knocks on the Door............................................. 66
Angel the Golden Retriever . . . Wrestles a Cougar.......................... 70
“Free-of-Charge Mutts” . . . Fend Off a Suicide Bomber.................. 74
Stormy the Quarter Horse . . . Drop Kicks a Feral Boar................... 79
Kabang the Aspin . . . Stops a Motorcycle....................................... 83
Pudding the Maine Coon . . . Plays Doctor....................................... 89
Lilly the Pit Bull . . . Confronts a Freight Train................................... 93
Czarue the Stray . . . Keeps a Lost Girl Warm................................... 97

PART TWO
TRAINED TO SERVE, INSPIRED TO HEAL
Fonzie the Dolphin . . . Makes a Boy Laugh...................................... 107
Dakota the Golden Retriever . . . Predicts Heart Attacks.................. 112
Endal the Labrador Retriever . . . Becomes Endal, the Wonder Dog!. 118
Roselle the Seeing-Eye Dog . . . Leads the Way Out.......................... 124
Trakr the German Shepherd . . . Finds the Last Survivor.................... 130
Rocky the K-9 . . . Catches an Armed Fugitive.................................. 135
Cheyenne the Pit Bull . . . Keeps a Vet from Suicide.......................... 139
Betsy the Quarter Horse . . . Bows to a Child................................... 145
Molly the Pony . . . Loses a Leg and Inspires Hope........................... 152
Chancer the Golden Retriever . . . Calms the Storm........................... 158
Treo the Labrador Retriever . . . Sniffs Out a Bomb........................... 164
Ricochet the Surfing Dog . . . Rides with the Disabled........................ 169
Daisy the Labrador Retriever . . . Detects Breast Cancer.................... 176
Cairo the Belgian Malinois . . . Assists Navy SEAL Team Six............ 180

PART THREE
WILD SAVIORS
Jambo the Gorilla . . . Comforts a Fallen Boy...................................... 187
Ugandan Vervet Monkeys . . . Adopt a Runaway............................... 192
Binti Jua the Gorilla . . . Consoles an Injured Child............................... 198
Donna Nook Gray Seals . . . Keep a Woman Afloat............................ 204
Lulu the Kangaroo . . . Saves a Farmer................................................. 209
Bottlenose Dolphins . . . ROUND UP THE Lifeguards........................ 213
Ningnong the Elephant . . . Runs from a Tsunami.................................. 216
Ethiopian Lions . . . Rescue a Girl from Kidnappers.............................. 221
Bottlenose Dolphins . . . Stop a Shark Attack..................................... 224
Mila the Beluga Whale . . . Lifts a Drowning Diver.............................. 231
legends and folktales

PART FOUR
LEGENDS AND FOLKTALES
Mediteranean Dolphins . . . Give a Greek Poet a Ride..................... 247
Gelert the Wolfhound . . . Saves the Baby....................................... 252
Moustache the Poodle . . . Joins the French Revolution................... 255
Barry der Menschenretter . . . Saves Travelers in the Swiss Alps.. 260
Pelorus Jack . . . Guides Ships Through Rocky Straits.................... 265
Sergeant Stubby . . . Sniffs Out Gas in WWI................................... 270
Wolves in India . . . Raise Two Girls in Their Den............................ 275
Togo the Siberian Husky . . . Goes the Extra Mile............................. 282
Chips, Dog 11-A . . . Takes Italian Prisoners..................................... 288
NOTES AND FURTHER READING............................................... 295
INDEX ................................................................................................. 310

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Daisy to the Rescue: True Stories of Daring Dogs, Paramedic Parrots, and Other Animal Heroes 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
ImaginaryReads More than 1 year ago
As a child, I was obsessed with animals and read many nonfiction books about them. I'm still very fond of animals today and was delighted to be presented with the opportunity to review a book about animal heroes! I was surprised to find that the stories were narrated like a report. I was expecting a little more narration. It does make sense though given that there are over fifty stories covered in this book. I like how the report style of narration helps to keep the author's bias and imagination from infiltrating the stories while leaving room readers to ask questions. If Campbell had taken liberties with embellishing the stories, it would be difficult to tell fact from fiction. The lack of embellishment doesn't take away from the emotions of the stories. In fact, many of them brought me to the verge of tears. I like the layout of the stories. The opening page provides the story title and a cute drawing of the animal hero. Beneath the picture, the following information is provided: the animal's name, species, the date and location of the heroic event, the situation, who was saved (name and age), and the fame meter (how famous the animal became). In the story itself, bold heading divide the story into segments for clear reading. As I mentioned earlier, the stories are really like reports, and Campbell often provides backstory, other angles, and epilogues to the heroic tales. At the end of some of the stories, Campbell provides abbreviated accounts of similar incidents that have taken place; he does this in bullet points at the end of the "report." It is clear that Campbell put much time and effort into the research for his book. Campbell compares tales of animal heroes and asks important questions about the validity of such tales. He also provides supplementary information on related topics to enrich the reading experience. For example, he provides a segment on mirror neurons as a possible reason for some accounts of animal heroics; another segment provides accounts of life-saving animals in pop culture. He also references some other books in his discussions of the heroic tales. I looked some of them up and plan to check them out in the future. Though I would have liked to see more time spent on each individual story, the broad range of stories covered in this book make it a worthwhile purchase. I recommend this book to readers who love animals and reading about true tales of animal heroism.
book4children More than 1 year ago
This book has some of the most touching animal rescues I've ever read. Some were heartwarming, like the pony that lost a leg and became an inspiration to sick people of all ages. Some, like the African lions that chased off a young girl's kidnappers and stood guard until the police arrived, defy explanation. One of the stories that got to me the most was about a young veteran that almost took his own life, but stopped himself when his sweet dog showed him unconditional love. The stories in this book are beautiful, inspiring, and a must read for any animal lover. This is the kind of book I would have devoured as a young adult. I devoured it as an adult, so what does that tell you? If you or your teen likes animals and want to read something that will warm your heart, pick this book up. It is like Chicken Soup for the Pet Owner's Soul. Content: Some intense situations and a few mild curse words. Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Compelling, heartfelt animal stories Human and animal bond. Pot-bellied pig save a woman having a heart attack . Mixed breed dog found an abandon baby and kept the baby safe. Feral children in the company of wolves, "The Wolf Children." How animals have a six sense, trouble arises they seem to know when danger is near. Beluga whale saved a whale trainer from drowning. Can wild animals in captivity become acclimated to humans? Domestication is a mystery. Asian Elephant with a girl rider on its back started act strangely as they strolled near the shoreline. The elephant anxiously tried to get as far away from the shoreline when the tsunami wave rolled in, the elephant sense out running the wave was of no use so what did it do? Hunker down and let the wave wash against them. The girl was saved before the second set of wave came crashing through. Dolphin sense a child's disability, so what does the dolphin do? The immobile side of the child the dolphin nuzzle it, and by doing so the child could move along with the dolphin. The dolphin present its dorsal fin for the child to hold on to pull the child around. A child raised by monkeys? Monkeys fed him and they gave the child bananas and cassava roots, sweet potato, nuts, roots and other fibrous plants. There's so much stories to read in this one book. I was completely baffled by some, sounded so far fetch but, hey who am I to say. I enjoyed the cute black and white sketches of the animals. I noticed something here in the book saying animals behavior, doing something only to get something in return. What? You will read about what animals feel and think. Mirror neurons, monkey see, monkey do? Animals think in pictures like autistic people, they see the actual things themselves. Is it legends and folktales? If you are a scientist, there's a problem. Story has a way of growing and changing each time it is told and retold. The writing and information with depth of questions to an answer very good. Did any of you see 60 minutes October 5, 2014? They had a segment about a dog who can identify over a thousand toys. Dog and humans make eye contact and releases this hormone called, "Oxytocin," on 60 minutes they call it the love hormone. Dogs are hugging you when they look into your eyes. Aww........ :D I recommend reading this book because the stories whether you believe it or not will grab a hold of your heart, plus it is wonderfully written. Received a hardcover book for a review and blog from ZestBooks, (Awesome publicists) Thank you, Darlene Cruz