Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Carol Bradley and the horror of puppy mills

What is a puppy mill? Are there puppy mills in Montana, or in other western states? What happens to female dogs in puppy mills? What do you need to know before you purchase a puppy?

This week on The Write Question, Carol Bradley answers those questions and others, and reads from her new book, Saving Gracie: How One Dog Escaped the Shadowy World of American Puppy Mills.

Gracie's life started much like any other puppy's would: she slumbered with her littermates ninety percent of the day and nursed the other ten percent. But she never had the chance to go exploring. Instead, the black-and-white puppy was crammed in a crate with the rest of her litter. There was no room to run and play; there was barely enough room to stand. Gracie was one of the lucky dogs who eventually escaped this cruel existence.

Award-winning journalist Carol Bradley chronicles Gracie's makeover from a bedraggled animal, worn out from bearing puppies, into a loving, healthy member of her new family.

Hear Chérie Newman's interview with Carol Bradley Thursday, July 29, at 6:30 (Yellowstone Public Radio) or 7:30 (Montana Public Radio). Or listen online.

Finding the Right Dog

You can avoid doing business with a puppy mill. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
  • Good breeders have nothing to hide. Don't let one talk you into meeting a some halfway point to sell you a puppy. Breeders should be happy to show you their kennel, where both the adults and the puppies are kept. Ask to stand in the doorway if the kennel operator doesn't want you inside the building. All of the dogs should be clean and healthy looking and protected from the elements.
  • Good breeders will test the parent dogs for hereditary diseases before breeding them. They will advise you on the health issues particular to the breed.
  • Good breeders will have a dog's registration papers ready when you pick up the dog. Their records will be complete and will organized.
  • Good breeders will provide documents outlining the vaccinations and any deworming the puppy has been given and what further shots or medicine the puppy needs.
  • Good breeders will want to check you out before selling you a puppy.
  • Good breeders don't work with a multitude of different breeds, nor do they advertise puppies for Christmas or other holidays.
  • Avoid buying dogs at pet wtores that do business with large-volume breeders.
  • Beware of wonderful-looking websites filled with photos of adorable puppies.
  • Consider adopting a cog from an animal shelter or a breed rescue group.
Find more information about puppy mills in Savie Gracie.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Richard O. Moore, Writing the Silences

The poems in Writing the Silences represent more than 60 years of Richard O. Moore’s work as a poet. Selected from seven full-length manuscripts written between 1946 and 2008, these poems reflect not only Moore’s place in literary history — he is the last of his generation of the legendary group of San Francisco Renaissance poets — but also his reemergence into today’s literary world after an important career as a filmmaker and producer in public radio and television. Writing the Silences reflects Moore’s commitment to freedom of form, his interest in language itself, and his dedication to issues of social justice and ecology.

This week (tonight) on The Write Question, Richard Moore will read several of his poems, in his wonderful mellifluous voice. He'll also talk about the early days of KPFA, the first community radio station in the United States, and what it was like to be a part of the San Franciscio poets' scene in the 1940s.

Listen online, or tune in this evening at 6:30 (Yellowstone Public Radio) or 7:30 (Montana Public Radio) to hear Richard Moore.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Zach Dundas IS The Renegade Sportsman

The Renegade Sportsman is one of those books with a beefy sub-title: "Drunken Runners, Bike Polo Superstars, Roller Derby Rebels, Killer Birds, and Other Uncommon Thrills on the Wild Frontier of Sports."

With a renegade's eyes and a fan's resolve, Zach Dundas takes us on a headlong, face-first dive into America's sporting underbelly. He scours the country to find the games, fans, and "athletes" you won't find on the sporting pages of your local newspaper. Through his harrowing and hilarious adventures, he begins to reconnect with the thrill of the sporting life, and he discovers a vibrant, beautiful, and thriving piece of American culture simmering right below the surface.

Dundas believes in the importance and delights of community sports and eschews gym culture. "You don't need a personal trainer to tell you how to exercise," he says. "You were born knowing how to exercise."

Dundas joins Chérie Newman this week on The Write Question to talk about his book and read a few choice parts.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Ednor Therriault Satisfies Your Curiosity About Montana

Read all about Ednor Therriault's new book, Montana Curiosities: Quirky Characters, Roadside Oddities, and Other Offbeat Stuff, in a previous post on this blog. Then listen to Chérie Newman's interview with Therriault, scheduled to air Thursday, July 8, at 6:30 p.m. (on Yellowstone Public Radio) and 7:30 p.m. (on Montana Public Radio).

Or listen online from the Montana Public Radio Web site.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Will the real Marianne Wiggins please stand up!

In her novel, The Shadow Catcher, Marianne Wiggins writes about herself as a semi-fictional character. The story is also populated by other actual people who are not completely themselves. Then, a few pages in, here comes an historically accurate portrayal of photographer Edward S. Curtis interacting with made-up folks and a side-story about something Wiggins father really did, followed by more fiction.

Huh, you say?

If you open the book -- which one New York Times reviewer called a "puzzle-box of fiction, biography and memoir" -- with your mind wide open, you can expect to be amazed. Wiggins' skill at braiding fiction and nonfiction storylines into the reality of an engaging novel are impressive.

Hear Marianne Wiggins talk about The Shadow Catcher on The Write Question this evening at 6:30 (Yellowstone Public Radio) or 7:30 (Montana Public Radio).

Click through to the Montana Public Radio Web site to listen to the program and find links to more information about the book.