Dog House: A Love Story

Dog House: A Love Story

by Carol Prisant

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Dog House wasn't supposed to be a book about love. It was supposed to be a hugely funny account of the dogs in Carol Prisant's life. And not just the dogs, but that first bird she found at Woolworth's, the monkey that fell in love with her husband's leg, the thankless tiny turtle, and the goldfish her pet- challenged mother flushed down the toilet. Somehow though, this straightforward telling got a little blindsided by things like making marriage work and home- owning and children and a profession and her dear, supportive husband, Millard. Which is why the goldfish will just have to wait for the sequel.

This book is still about cold noses, warm bellies, four on the floor, and a snuggler or two. Your basic fur family. It's also about the love of a mother for her son, a wife for her husband, a husband for some dogs, and the love it takes to make a haunted house a home. Your basic family furnisgings. Throw in a lot of antiques, a couple triumphs over adversity, and a more-than-seems-fair share of heartbreaking loss and you have Dog House--the warm, absorbing, and humorous tale of dogs and marriage, love and marriage and life.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101427415
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/06/2010
Sold by: Penguin Group
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 256
File size: 323 KB
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Carol Prisant is the author of Good, Better, Best; the New York Times bestseller Antiques Roadshow Primer; and Antiques Roadshow Collectibles. Prisant is the American editor of the Condé Nast publication The World of Interiors and has written frequently for The New York Times, New York magazine, and Martha Stewart Living, among many others.

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Dog House: A Love Story 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
morningwalker on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I think if you are truly a dog lover - this book will leave you disappointed with the author. She tells the story of her life with her husband, son and pets honestly (which I give her credit for) but I don¿t think she truly understands dog love as she writes about it on the second page. ¿Dog-love is steadfast, unreserved and genuine. It¿s wholehearted. It¿s uncritical.¿ She only seemed to heed these principles with the dogs who conformed to her standards. She stresses in the beginning how much she is not like her mother (who said she liked dogs, but really didn`t) but I believe she is more like her mother than she cares to admit. There are many issues one has to deal with when making a commitment to a pet, and one has to be willing to love the good and live with the bad. That¿s just the way it is when you decide to bring an animal into your life. However, this author, even after doing research, seemed to go out of her way (literally, many times) to make choices for pets that were less than ideal, and then when things just didn¿t work out, she gave up on the commitments. The author admitted to her shortcomings several times, but it didn¿t make up for her behavior. I¿m not sure how I would classify her, but I don¿t think it would be as a dog-person.Overall, if you want to read a fairly well written memoir, this book is all of that. If you want to read a compassionate dog -love story, this book doesn¿t come close.
theeccentriclady on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I just recently joined Library Things "Early Reviewers" program. I thought it might be fun. Well I got a book my first time choosing and what a perfect book it was for me!Carol's story of her 42 year marriage and the 10 different dogs they had through the years sounded so much like my life!I have only had 4 dogs and I hope I am a better chooser of breeds than she was at times. Her quick wit with the stories of her dogs made me chuckle out loud many times to where I was annoying my husband. Which leads me to her relationship with Millard, her high school sweetheart! It is so refreshing to read about a real couple. The things they loved and shared and the things they just put up with. Their love was deep and special and I am glad Carol chose to write about their life.If you love dogs, fixing up houses, antiques and especially have a good long lasting marriage, I think this book will give you a few good evenings of pleasurable reading!
knitwit2 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ms. Prisant opens her life to the reader by sharing stories of her human and her animal family. Her adored only child, her long-suffering husband, and the crazy mix of pets, consisting mainly of dogs, but also including a bird and a monkey guaranteed to make you laugh out loud. Her long standing marriage was common and yet uncommon at the same time. They had a quiet "normal" life, with an amazingly uncommon bond. The book was a pleasure to read, filled with humor and the bitter-sweet taste of love.
kreativiT on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was a good read and well written. The author leads you through her lifelong experiences with dogs. I found it entertaining and interesting, particularly since the author was not brought up in a "dog house", a house that always had a dog. She tells of her few experiences with dogs as a child and how she came to have her first dog as an adult. The author leads you through the acquisition, training, and various ups and downs with the dogs. She and her husband learned a lot about dog ownership and at the same time, you are able to see her wonderful relationship with her husband over the years. It was a warm, touching story.
4daisies on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is a very honest look at pet ownership at the very least. It's also a story of a love between a husband and wife. I have read many books relaying heartwarming stories of families and pets and was expecting this to be similar pie-in-the-sky type of story (not to say that's a bad thing) but the difference was evident almost from the begining. At first I was taken aback at Ms. Prisant's willingness to "give up" on some of her pet choices so quickly. I wanted her to be a "better" pet owner than me. I too have had to return a problem pet when I knew it was beyond me to deal with the particular problem the pet presented, and I always felt so bad about it, like I was not very responsible or something. The reality of loving dogs (or cats) though is that each one has their own particular personalities and sometimes the fit is right and sometimes it isn't and it's best to know and recognize the problem sooner rather than later for all concerned. Anyway, the second part of the book focusing on the later years was heartbreaking yet encouraging. It's a picture of a real life, an honest life, a life well lived and by no means at a standstill. I would look forward to reading a sequel.
monzrocks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Dog House is a memoir of Prisant's life with her reserved husband, the dogs they adopted throughout their years together, and the fixer-upper homes they lived in and renovated. It was a short, enjoyable read, but I felt Prisant was, for most of the story, somehow holding back. Her passion for her dogs and husband somehow doesn't carry through in the writing.One thing I didn't like was the ease with which she seemed to re-home her pets, especially in the beginning of the book. Overall, I think that someone more similar to her (older, fond of antiques and renovation) would enjoy the book more than the general dog person.I'd recommend "A Three Dog Life," by Abigail Thomas, for a more engrossing read 'dog memoir.'
berylweidenbach on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A delightful, honest, heartwarming book! It reads like a memoir about the writers married life, motherhood, her career choices and the unfolding of her love of dogs through the years. She is above all, honest about her shortcomings and questionable decisions especially where it involves her pets. That honesty is what makes the book so charming. It is also about the ebb and flow of life, accepting with grace and dignity that which is before us. She had a lovely marriage, though she makes it clear that it wasn't an especially romantic union but rather based on mutual respect and deep affection along with the shared enthusiasm for their son, dogs, gardening and renovation, in that order I believe, the last four which were cultivated over time. Like all of us she adapted to her circumstances. The reader feels a part of this story including the shock and sadness at the untimely death of her husband, who died in his own bed with his dogs nearby, his wife at his side and her shaky attempts to find a way through her grief, as if a best friend is confiding her thoughts. Through her story interspersed with the acquisition of many beloved dogs are the anecdotes, often hilarious, about their adjustment, readjustment and adaption to the wildly differing personalities and challenges placed before them by their various pets. The stories of the dogs, of longing, love and loss ( and yes, occasionally forfeit) enlarges our understanding of how we deal with all of life's uncertainties, facing love head on, letting go. Being a dog lover, animal lover and book lover, this story was well suited to me. For someone who had not grown up with dogs, the writer adapted quite well. I could really identify with her frustration as various dog "issues" arose and though I didn't wholly approve of her giving the "problem" dogs up, I know that sometimes that is the best choice and much harder to come to than you realize. She was able to find them very good homes and that is all anyone could ask. A lovely, satisfying read!
nightprose on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a beautiful book about love, joy, loss, and life. Ms. Prisant takes us into her home and her life, and shares with us both the people and dogs who filled it.Dog lovers will especially love "Dog Hosue". It is easy to identify with the situations that are portrayed. It is also easy and enjoyable to get to know the cast of "characters" that revolve through Ms. Prisant's "House" .This book reminds us of the different ways love teaches us, and that the more it grows, the more we do. Ms. Prisant has indeed given us a treat to savor.
bc104 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
No doubt Carol Prisant love dogs - loves getting dogs that is. However, it seems that she loves giving them away more (along with a pet monkey). It seemed that every time a dog posed a problem to Prisant's human or canine family - she at one point had three dogs at once - she would give it away. The reader is teased into loving the vibrant personalities of each of her four-legged family members, but then shocked by the seeming swiftness of her decision to part with them voluntarily. Prisant's husband Millard becomes the true star of the book, but only at the end as Prisant faces his ensuing death from Pancreatic Cancer. Overall, the book was disatisfying. I'm sure Prisant did not lightly give away her dogs, but she did leave her reader unconvinced as to the need to do so.
samaree on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This poignant and sparse memoir is an absorbing read. A tale of marriage via the dogs the couple adopts, it is, at times, unsettling in the offhand way the dogs are treated, as if they are property to be obtained and given away, like unwanted furniture. But, at times, it made me think of how my life would have been different with or without a pet. Would I have met him without that cat? Could I have moved there if I had not been tied down to a dog?Ultimately, I think the writer makes mostly correct, if selfish, decisions, about the dogs she keeps. And, overall, dogs enrich and influence her life.
agirlandherbooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
While Carol Prisant's story of devoted family life with her husband and son is moving and vibrant, her tales of the dogs who shared their lives falls short. After complaining about her mother's refusal to allow her canine companionship as a child, she gets rid of her son's first dog -- and lies to him about the dog's fate -- just like her mother did decades earlier. Her affection for four-footed friends is shallow, which makes the choice of title confusing and misleading. For a real story of love, loss and dogs, read Abigail Thomas' Three Dog Life.
rawlski on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Carol Prisant vividly tells the story of her life, love and dogs throughout this short, easy read. From her first pets ¿ a bird and a monkey ¿ to her 10 dogs, the book illustrates a person that truly wants to be an animal person. I found myself frustrated with the ¿memoir¿ (which the author says often that this book is not) as Prisant relived the stories of pet ownership. While her accounts of her life through the dogs that came into it were honest, some of the choices made by Prisant and her husband did not show that true dog lover that she claims to be.
nobooksnolife on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Some people have comfort foods¿usually something not too healthy for the body but soothing to the 'inner child.' I have "comfort reads"¿books that don't do much for my intellect but provide non-demanding interludes as I climb Mt. To-Be-Read. As a comfort read, Dog House: A Love Story by Carol Prisant is as good as they come¿a soft cushion upon which to rest a tired psyche, a friendly package of canine devotional anecdotes, a humorous, warm tale of tails¿sprinkled with house refurbishing and gardening, and, as the title promises, love. If books were strawberry shortcake, this one would be a towering mound of frothy indulgence, topped with the freshest berries.I am unabashedly a dog person. I also love nest-making, sprucing up houses, furnishings and gardening, mostly by watching the Home Network, but at least my intentions are good. Anyone who shares these traits will probably love this book.There are losses, partings, and deaths in this story, straightforward but gentle reminders of the inevitability of love and loss. Taken as a whole, Dog House is my 'macaroni and cheese' type of book--so good in the reading but sad when the end comes.
nyiper on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was a little confused about what the author was trying to do but she definitely grew on me as the book progressed. She held absolutely nothing back from the reader, telling "me" exactly what she thought about events in her life from the point of view of her current age. I was particularly appreciative of the description of her husband's illness and what she and he went through. That experience alone could have become an entire book. Once her husband was gone, the sparkle in her life disappeared---something she perhaps didn't fully understand until he was no longer there----a good lesson for all of us. Although the book kept coming back to the dogs in her/their life, it included lots more and the dogs sort of filled in the spaces.
susanahern on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
In this true account, author Carol Prisant tells her life story via all the different dogs she has owned through the years. A heart-warming tale, the reader becomes acquainted with the breeds and personality traits of these furry members of her family. With a delightful sense of humor, Carol also relates her experiences concerning motherhood, the renovation of old houses, antiques, running a business, becoming a writer, and ¿ most importantly ¿ her 42-year marriage to husband Millard. This lovely book touches upon all the things that make a life worth living: love, family, home, devotion and, finally, the heartbreak of losing those you love.
tldittmer04 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
At first, I wasn't sure about this book. I was pleasantly surprised. It's a wonderful story about life, love, and human foibles. I love the way this author writes. Because of this book, I think I found my next dog. Just have to convice hubby that we can handle a dog, two cats, and a 3 yr old.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found the book to be interesting, well written and surprisingly entertaining. Ms Prisant has an excellent wit and, as both a dog lover and a person who enjoys a good story, I found the book a very easy read. I think this would be a very good book club book or one that certainly brings back memories of of all the dogs you might have owned in your life and how you and your family grew around them.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago