19. Martin Kihn – Bad Dog (A Love Story)

So, good news! Tomorrow I have no classes and I’m going home for the weekend because Sunday is my 21st birthday! Yay!

I finished this book the other day (and I’m almost finished another one before I’ve even gotten around to writing this!), Bad Dog (A Love Story) by Martin Kihn. I was drawn to this book by the picture of a Bernese Mountain Dog on the cover as an avid puppy lover. The last book I read about dogs was Inside of a Dog, so I was looking forward to reading more of a story about dogs instead of an analysis.

Martin Kihn - Bad Dog (A Love Story) [photo taken by me]
Martin Kihn – Bad Dog (A Love Story) [photo taken by me]
The book is a memoir from Martin Kihn about his life with his Bernese mountain dog, Hola. Kihn and his wife got Hola as a puppy when Kihn was an alcoholic – his wife thought the dog would keep her company. Since Kihn was unmotivated to train Hola, she was very poorly behaved and even started attacking Kihn’s wife.

After one particularly bad day with the dog, Kihn’s wife left to get some time to herself in their vacation home. This inspired Kihn to sober up and train Hola to be a good dog so that his wife would come back home to them.

At the start, Hola seemed untrainable, but Kihn persisted and the book leads up to Hola taking the Canine Good Citizen test. Throughout the book, Kihn explains this whole process and what exactly the Canine Good Citizen test is, as well as Hola’s progress.

I have mixed feelings about this book. For the first chunk of the book, I wasn’t in to it. It was kind of boring and I didn’t really have the urge to keep reading, although I stuck with it, and ultimately I was glad I did.

The ending of the book is really, really sweet, and after reading it, you really feel connected to Hola. I was definitely left with a heartwarming feeling when I finished this book.

If you start to read this book and aren’t hooked immediately, I think it’s certainly worth sticking with until the end. I think people who like dogs will especially like this book.


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