"The Mortality of Dogs and Humans" by Victoria Waddle

  • "The Mortality of Dogs and Humans" by Victoria Waddle

Because their lifespan is so much shorter than our own, a life with dogs involves repeated lessons in mortality. But there are lessons in love and tender care as well. With them, we have to learn to live in the moment "because a dog doesn’t spill regret throughout the house, doesn’t lurk in a life of guilt and second-guessing." Victoria reflects on the lives of five dogs and how their need for the outdoors helped to create opportunities to repeatedly seize the day. A book for anyone who has ever loved a dog or needs a gift of uplift while grieving the loss of their companion pup.


Victoria is able to share the realities of the love and loss of our most precious furbabies in an honest way that we can all relate to. Her sharing of her experiences, her devotion, and resilience, are heartfelt and heartbreaking. Also relating to her personal family struggles and loss make this a story that brings home what love really is all about.
—Randi Lui, former Search and Rescue K9 hander and Dog Unit Leader
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

Victoria Waddle


Victoria Waddle is a Pushcart Prize-nominated writer, with fiction and nonfiction published in literary journals and anthologies, including in Best Short Stories from The Saturday Evening Post Great American Fiction Contest. A collection of her short fiction, Acts of Contrition, was published by Los Nietos Press. Formerly the managing editor of Inlandia: A Literary Journey, she helped to establish a yearly teen issue. In a previous life, she was a high school English teacher and librarian. The mother of three independent sons, she lives with her husband and two large, rambunctious rescue dogs in Southern California.

Twitter: @VictoriaWaddle1

Instagram: @Victoria_Waddle

Author Website: VictoriaWaddle.com

Book Review Website: SchoolLibraryLady.com

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  • $7.99