- Format: Hardcover
- ISBN-13: 9781565123717
- Publisher: ALGONQUIN BOOKS OF CHAPEL HILL
- Published: January 2004
My Therapist's Dog is a true story of a woman, her therapist, and the dog they both love. The woman is writer Diana Wells, who at a time of grief, seeks out the services of Beth, the therapist. In exchange for sessions she could not otherwise afford, Diana becomes caretaker to Beth's sweet, clumsy Labrador retriever, Luggs.Constitutionally opposed to therapy and resistant to change, Diana finds it difficult to trust Beth, but ultimately Luggs becomes a bridge between patient and counselor. Sure he steals food and doesn't come when called, but he's irrepressibly good-natured, capable of unconditional love, and in the moment. As Diana explores her peripatetic childhood, her eccentric family, and her current melancholy, she grows closer to Luggs and also opens up to Beth. Only then does she begin to forgive, hope, and love again.Dog lover by nature, historian by trade, Diana Wells is curious about the connections dogs and humans have shared for centuries - and what these bonds tell us about our own psyches. Between therapy appointments, she analyzes what we name our dogs, how we breed them, how we've explored the wilderness with them, the kinds of literature we've written about them, why we love them (and they love us), and, most important, what we can learn from them.When Beth becomes ill, Diana cares for her, just as she has cared for Beth's beloved dog. This meditation on the meaning and rewards of relationships reminds us that despite the possibility of sorrow and pain, our connections - to both the animal and human worlds - are what make life worth living.