Book Review – Rufus Finds a Home
Rufus finds a home
By: Theodore Jerome Cohen
Publisher: TJC Press
Release date: January 2017
Rufus is a beautiful golden retriever who lives with Charlie, a wonderful and caring man. Charlie loves his dog but the man is getting old and can no longer take care of Rufus. What will happen to this special dog?
Rufus is full of energy and wants to play. He loves chasing sticks, taking long walks and exploring his surroundings. While Charlie would love to run with his dog, the man has grown old and tired – he can’t play with his dog anymore. The two are sitting by a tree on a beautiful fall day, as Charlie worries about his dog. Soon Charlie will be moving into his daughter’s house and Rufus won’t be able to follow his landlord to the new house. Charlie remembers many funny moments the two shared, but his thoughts keep returning to his dog’s future. What will become of Rufus?
As the two friends sit quietly near the tree, a young boy approaches Charlie. He asks the man about his dog – what’s his name, can he do tricks – and Charlie’s face lights up. There’s nothing he likes better than talking about Rufus. Charlie tells Jimmy about the tricks Rufus can do, how the dog went to dog school and was a star student, and how Rufus helps around the house. Jimmy is quickly joined by his sister Heather, and their mother, and all three are intrigued by the handsome golden retriever.
As Charlie talks about his dog, Heather notices that he is quite sad.
“Then why are you sad? asked the boy’s sister, Heather,
“A beautiful dog like Rufus should bring joy forever.”
“I know,” the man said wiping tears from his eyes,
“but old age took my youth by surprise.”
It’s obvious that Jimmy and his family like people who adore Rufus. Will they be able to give the dog a new home?
Although I have read and reviewed many dog stories dealing with rescues and finding homes for abandoned dogs, this is the first that deals with a very difficult, but seldom discussed subject of what happens when an elderly person is no longer able to care for their pet. Having to part with a beloved pet is difficult for everyone, but for an older person who may have already lost a spouse or other loved one, the event can be particularly stressful. Told in rhyme, with beautiful photographs of Rufus that perfectly match the action on each page, the story is easy to follow and heartwarming too. Rufus Finds a Home is a book kids will love to read, while also educating them on how/why dogs sometimes need new homes.
Quill says: Tough subject matter, approached with sensitivity, makes Rufus Finds a Home a wonderful story that children will enjoy and want to read again and again.