Magazine  >  Issue 49  >  Oogy


Former bait dog is now a model canine citizen helping children understand the negative effects of prejudice and stereotyping.

I first saw Oogy on a 2008 Valentine’s Day episode of Oprah. I was instantly in love with the big dog with one ear whose face looked slightly deformed. As the large dog climbed onto the lap of owner Larry Levin, it was clear to me that Oogy was a special dog in more ways than one. Although at first blush, Oogy seemed an unlikely candidate for such enamor, I was smitten just the same.

Alison Sweeney

Perhaps it was the background of the former bait dog puppy who had been so badly mauled, and who would require several surgeries to help heal his wounds, that pulled at my heartstrings. The mauling had left him with one ear and a broken jawbone, which was partially removed. Or perhaps it was his adoptive family who appeared with him that day, people whose lives had clearly been touched and changed forever with their unconditional love for Oogy. Whatever it was, thoughts of Oogy stayed with me for days, so it was with great excitement when I learned, two years later, Larry had written a book about Oogy, Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love, which made The New York Times best sellers' list…

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