BOOKS: The Dog Who Rescues Cats

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, January/February 1996:

The Dog Who Rescues Cats: The True Story of
G i n n y, by Philip Gonzalez and Lenore Fleischer. HarperCollins
(10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022-5299),
1995. $16.00 hardback.
Imagine a tough Vietnam veteran, a laborer who lived to
spend, turning into a man who lives impoverished by choice, to
enable rescuing and nurturing the outcast cats of the Long Island
beach areas––not just lost housepets, but cats born feral and afflicted
with every kind of pest, disease, and defect, including some gruesomely
damaged by cruel people. He cherishes cats who are blind,
deaf, lacking hind feet, and one who is neurologically defective, and
tells us that even these can make loving and pleasure-giving friends
and companions. Living on disability pay after an accident took away
his job and his former physical freedom , this man spent nearly
$1,000 on only one of the many cats he continually sought veterinary
aid for, all the time feeding many feral cats and neutering all he could

Philip Gonzalez became a cat-lover when he went to an animal
adoption center looking for a big tough dog, but met tiny Ginny,
a mother-mutt attracted to his handicaps and depression. Ginny
worked her way into the job of making the man a happier life through
her love, patience, and practice of what Gonzalez came to believe
was her mission, which, as he bonded to her, became his own.
Ginny is a dog with an inner radar leading him to cats in need, including
a blind cat needing an adoptive home; a litter of kittens thrown
down a pipe to die, too feeble to be heard by any ear but Ginny’s;
and cats too savage to be approached. Her loving makes their rehabilitation
There are many photographs in the book: Ginny is an
appealing cover girl. Readers of Good Housekeeping will recognize
the wonder-dog from a recent article. Here is more!
––Phyllis Clifton

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