I was recently honored with the request to write a book review! My friend, K.B. Lacoste, co-authored “One Unforgettable Journey” with Dan Stallings, and my obvious interest in all doggies meant I had the privilege of reading and commenting on their story. Pregnancy made reading the book take longer than I had hoped, but better late than never, right?
The first few pages of “One Unforgettable Journey” reminded me of many stories I have read over the past few years. They introduced a man whose life was changed by a dog. Some may think that dogs are just pets, or just animals, or simply companions that keep us from being lonely. But then there are men like Dan, who prove that just one dog can start a chain reaction that will completely change your life. He met a Weimaraner puppy who tugged on his heart’s strings, and the rest, as they say, “is history.”
Meeting this puppy turned into adopting the puppy, which turned into owning two puppies so the first puppy wouldn’t be lonely. (It’s funny how that happens – *cough-Fred&Angel-cough*)
Eventually, Dan abandoned his “real” job and became a certified dog trainer and opened a rescue for Weimaraners. Any man who opens a rescue for dogs gets the seal of approval, in my book.
Although it was hard to read about Dan’s first meeting with Maverick, I consoled myself with the fact that the story had a happy ending. What started as simple interest in a Weimaraner listed for sale turned into the rescue of a lifetime. The ad described the dog as a show dog, and that sparked Dan’s interest, since dog shows were a foreign idea at the time.
But the “show dog” he met was far from show-worthy. He was thin to the point of being emaciated, and every bone showed through his neglected frame. His nails were overgrown, his body showed wounds and sores, and it was clear he was terrified of his owners, especially the child who should have been his best friend.
I have grown to look at dogs as more than just pets, and the idea of poor little Maverick in this condition was heart-breaking. I have seen too many dogs and read too many stories of the disgraceful condition that’s a direct result of abuse and neglect. Have you ever met or seen a Weimaraner?
They are athletic and proud, and are truly a beautiful creature. The mental picture painted in this story still makes me angry, for no pet should ever get to this point. But that mental picture proved that Maverick needed an intervention, and thank God Dan answered that ad.
The next few months were challenging and difficult, but Dan powered through. He made Mav his number one priority and pretty much neglected his “real life” in order to nurse the poor guy back to health. But he didn’t stop at just seeing Mav healthy again; he wanted his new buddy to thrive.
Dan knew that Maverick had originally been a show dog, and he wanted to give him a chance to compete again. I couldn’t help but admire him for taking on such a mysterious world, just because he wanted to see Maverick in his element. The stories of the dog shows are heart warming and humorous. There is just something about a dog’s happy ending that makes my heart smile, and Mav’s is no exception.
I strongly encourage you to read Dan and Maverick’s story. You can head over to Maverick’s Facebook page and give him a good “like.” The pictures alone will make you smile! You can also read more about where Mav is today, and see how far he has come on his journey.
That journey truly was unforgettable, and I hope you will read more. Who doesn’t love a good doggie story?