In her chapbook memoir, The Mortality of Dogs and Humans, Victoria Waddle explores her (our) relationship with dogs, the joy and comfort of their companionship, and the lessons they can teach us about being better humans. By sharing her memories of Fletcher and Zainy, she shows everyone else what dog people already know: that dogs are individuals (with specific personalities, quirks, and anxieties, just like the rest of us) and how our relationship with them changes from one dog to the next. She shows how it is through their interaction with dogs that the truth of a person is revealed. This book is an examination of our responsibility to those we love, and the (sometimes impossible) difficulty of taking care of them, especially those who are beyond our communication. Waddle captures the pain of deciding when, exactly, a dog is suffering more than living and, in comparison, forces the reader to wonder why we allow our beloved elderly to suffer more than our beloved pets. Dog people, as they read this book, will instantly get it. Cat people will get it. Non pet owners, those poor lost souls, will get it (and they might even be converted).
—Tim Hatch, poet and author of Wild Embrace

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