Next Door's Dog Is a Veteran's Dog
|By||Gina Dawson, Illustrations - Vivienne Da Silva|
|Book Size||256 x 256 x 9 mm (H x W x D)|
|Imprint||New Holland Publishers|
|Release Date||1 Apr 2021|
|Subject Classification||Picture books, activity books & early learning material / Picture books|
Next Door’s Dog is a Veteran’s Dog is the fourth book about working dogs, written by Gina Dawson to educate children about the roles of Assistance and Therapy Dogs in modern society and the invaluable work they do.
Veteran Joe and his family have moved in next door to Lucas. Dad and Joe are good mates who served in the military together. They both look well and healthy, but Joe is troubled by memories that make him anxious, angry or sad. That’s why he has Poppy, an Assistance Dog, who goes with him everywhere.
When Lucas sees Joe getting off the bus with Poppy by his side, he wants to know more. He listens to Dad but doesn’t really understand how Poppy helps Joe – until he sees it for himself.
At a café Lucas looks on while Poppy keeps watch, stays close to Joe, and allows him to relax and enjoy the celebration without worrying about what is happening behind him. That’s when Lucas begins to understand the wonderful work that Poppy does to help Joe to live a full life. He also learns that the way people look does not always tell the whole story.
Next Door’s Dog is a Veteran’s Dog is a sensitively written, unique children’s book with many messages, including educating children about PTSD and anxiety, invisible disability, the work of veterans and first responders, correct behaviour around Assistance Dogs, and most of all, about the unique bond between a man and his dog, and how they look out for each other.
Written in a way that shows compassion and respect, this book is educational and relevant in a time where PTSD, anxiety and mental health issues are becoming more prevalent, particularly in Veterans and First responders.
From the Author:
I chose a veteran for this book as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), is disproportionately prevalent in Military Personnel and First Responders. It can, however, affect anyone who has had exposure to traumatic experiences.
Although difficult concepts to explain to children because we can’t see them, most children understand the feeling of feeling scared or threatened, and wanting to run, fight or hide. People with PTSD often feel in danger and may live in states of high alert and depression.
This may result in a person wanting to isolate to feel safer, thus affecting all aspects of life. The benefits of being able to re-join society can be life-changing for the entire family.
Gina Dawson is a teacher who spent fifteen years presenting programs on a variety of social and personal issues to students of all ages across all school sectors. She knows how to present facts on a range of topics and promote discussion in a way that is fun, non-threatening and entirely comfortable. As well as her interest in youth well-being, Gina is a lifelong lover of dogs, an experienced trainer and is cognizant of the disability sector. She volunteers for a Service Dog organisation and is keen to educate children about the many roles dogs play in society. Now retired, Gina’s passion is writing children’s books that educate and promote awareness, as well as ghost writing memoirs. Her other interests include reading, walking, architecture, travelling, and spending time with family, friends and of course her dog.