Thursday, May 29, 2014

How Fiji's Most Famous Dog Got Saved

Playful Poppy, the famous Fijian dog who grabbed headlines two years ago, is back again with her very own book, The Poppy Project. Poppy shot to fame when animal lovers world wide contributed to her reconstructive surgery after a hunting accident left her maimed and on the brink of death. Poppy got a new nose, a new life, and a new Happy Ever After family in Australia.

Although Poppy is now famous in her home country of Fiji and her new country Australia, I had never heard of this brave little dog until I saw an episode of Bondi Vet on Animal Planet, dedicated solely to Poppy’s story of rescue and reconstructive surgery. I cried and laughed alternately through the show as I watched Poppy’s tale of woe unfold and then turn to joy. Despite the horrific injuries to her snout, and the pain and discomfort she must have felt many times during her long road to recovery, that tail never stopped wagging and her wonderful doggy smile never left her face. Poppy showed love and joyfulness at all times. She was just ecstatic to be with people. I was moved by the number of people who formed a chain of love stretching from Fiji to Australia and, indeed, the rest of the world in an effort to give one dog a chance at life. Poppy grabbed that chance between her teeth and ran with it. Poppy’s miracle began the day someone spotted her foraging for food, malnourished and clearly suffering. Without significant and drastic help, Poppy would never have survived. That help came.

Poppy on arrival at Animals Fiji
Julie Hoskison of the West Charity Trust Society says: Poppy’s story shows what is possible when people refuse to look the other way. This poor little creature was just holding on to life and could not have lasted more than a few more weeks without food. In Fiji, thin, unwanted dogs are a dime a dozen and Poppy was just another one of these. My thanks go to Headmaster Segran Pillay who was the first to notice her and took time to help; and to the hundreds of others who then played their part in her miraculous journey. I hope Poppy’s story inspires others to go out of their way to help creatures in need.”

This book is a must for readers who enjoy heart-warming animal stories and who would like to do more for animals but do not know how. Included are easy tips on how to make a difference, a wonderful poem written by Poppy about her Pretty Ever After life, Poppy’s Classroom Capers quiz, and a short story fiction for younger readers. Poppy makes public appearances as the spokesdog for Animals Fiji and inspires even more people she meets in person.
Poppy in her role as Ambassadog for Animals Fiji!
Poppy has never forgotten her friends left behind in Fiji and, as Ambassadog for Animals Fiji, this playful pooch is doing something to help the many needy animals in Fiji. Animals Fiji’s motto is “No animal is turned away” but they need help and Poppy’s book aims to raise both awareness and funds for this worthy cause.

Poppy’s miracle is now complete.  Please share her message of happiness and, by doing so, in some small way you will be helping other animals—the ones left behind.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Book Review: Little Bird Lost

Little Bird Lost by Steve and Kate Larkinson is the story of four little birds (baby swallows), discovered by Steve in the eaves of a bakery in south-west France. One of the little birds seems to have disappeared. Is he safe? Has he fallen out the nest? Can he be rescued? Do his parents know where he is? This delightful story in photographs (by Steve) and rhyming couplets (by Kate) will absolutely enchant readers aged 3-5, but actually, adults will also just love this little tale from the world of nature. What I especially enjoyed about this book is the beautiful photographs. I love children’s illustrations but the unique angle of actual images really struck me. Not only are they absolutely first-class and clear, but it is the perfect way to teach young readers about the real world of birds.
Children are generally interested in animals and wildlife, and parents and relatives could use this delightful book as a springboard to other books involving wildlife. This is a great book for bedtime reading, and I would also encourage children’s libraries to include a copy. Children will enjoy the images as well as the captivating story. What a lovely start to getting your child interested in reading! As an added bonus, there is a delightful little cartoon book video on YouTube to really round off an enchanting reading experience.