Once Upon a Time I Wrote a Book
That Magnificent Manuscript

Learning Respect and Appreciation for Dogs from Ciaran Walsh's Book: One Eyed Leo

Ciaran Walsh Smart Con 9-27-2021

by Yvonne DiVita, working with Discerning Writers and Smart Entrepreneurs

One Eyed Leo
Let's talk a little bit about animal welfare. About dogs, specifically. The video of my Smart Conversation is at the end, if you prefer to hop down to it. I add this content to give context to the story. But, you may just want the video. It's there, just scroll down. 
Ciaran Walsh's new book, One Eyed Leo, takes the reader on a journey into adopting a special needs dog, but then goes far beyond the usual advice. (hint: This book gives parents a "get out of jail free" card by demonstrating what it means to have a dog. The children participate in the necessary steps to take before adopting the dog, and learn to understand what adopting the dog will mean for them, before they go to the shelter. If they balk at the work, the parents win that "I want a dog!" conversation.) As Ciaran says, "It is the first book to ever test the resolve of a child’s will to have a dog."
In this book, 50+ experts offered their insight and feedback, and advice, to take the reader into the world of pet adoption. The book is both a love story and a simple program of project management for owning a dog. We say 'having a dog' around here because you don't own thinking, feeling creatures. They are as important as any thinking, breathing, feeling creature so... we don't enslave them. But, most of the world says 'owning' so we'll go with that in this instance. 
One Eyed Leo
Ciaran has produced a masterpiece of fiction that is full of fact, insight, story, education, and illumination. For instance, what does adoption look like in the US, compared to ... oh, say, Switzerland, where there are no shelters or strays. Where you have to take a 4-hour course before getting a dog. Where... well, watch the video and learn more about the differences between them and us and... why WE, as a country, as a dog loving community, as a society, can finally win the war on puppy mills.
You'll learn so much in this one almost 40 minute video, you'll be writing to ask me to have Ciaran on again, I have no doubt.
Ciaran tells us in the video that this is the first book ever written intended to be rejected. You'll see what he means by that when you watch. 
The cornerstone of the story, of the book, is respect. Respect for dogs as living, breathing, feeling creatures. But, even more than that, respect for the fact that there is a war going on, a war on puppy mills! A war that can only be won, one way: by education the people who buy dogs online!

“Anyone can love a dog, BUT respecting a dog takes a lot of work and a lot of research.”

Ciaran tells us that this story, this book, One Eyed Leo, is a simple program of project management for owning a dog. It's a more successful way to look at the problem of dogs being dropped off at shelters or adopted and then taken back.
The book goes into how animals are considered, respected, or abandoned. I love how the story is told from Leo's viewpoint and how he strives to teach his children the necessary tasks they need to perform to adopt him. 
Ciaran shares the dollars and cents of it all. Billions of dollars. Supporting puppy mills. Did you know - every 4.5 seconds a dog enters a shelter for the first time. Every 30 seconds to one minute, a dog is euthanized. Puppy mills rely on parents being misinformed or uninformed. They make $130 every second - and since many sales at a puppy mill are not recorded, they pay little or no taxes.
Who supports them, then? We do! Tax paying citizens do. Because we have not taken the time to be informed - not just about how they operate their cruel businesses, but how we might put them out of business. We prefer to live in la-la land where life is beautiful all the time and all the dogs get good homes and if they don't, it's not our fault.
Maybe it is our fault. Yep, I'm pointing a finger at all of you. And myself. What can we do, besides adopting all the dogs the world over? We can BECOME informed now. Watch this video. Buy Ciaran's book. Enjoy the beautiful artwork by artist Oksana Veber. It's phenomenally good!
You can and should get the book for yourself, a friend, a relative, anyone thinking of getting a dog or anyone who knows someone with a dog. That's how good and how important it is.
It's the best way to win the puppy mill war, folks.
Letter to mom and dad
Peek Inside the book: 

The book is full of learning tasks for the children - Why is that so important?

Within a logical and functional understanding what is ‘Respect’ the book tries to

    • The pet; take children and adults to a place where they ‘delight’ in the dog being part of their world.  And equally a place where the dog fully understands who and what this forever home is all about,
    • Autonomy; everyone – and the dog – knows what their duties and obligations are.  
    • Clarity of attachment; by the end of the book, everyone understands the basics in detail; dog’s expected life span, daily requirements, second by second required behaviour in certain circumstances (when a dog is eating, critical expressions of body language, etc).

Daily structure and routine

The book is structured as: (i) a love story, (ii) narrative, (iii) learning tasks, (iv) technical expert support for parents; covering issues such as medical, legal, insurance, how to source a dog, how not to source a dog, choosing a dog trainer, and how to protect your pet if your legal status changes.

In the end, the book is both about a specific conversation which happens around the world each and every day (why can't I have a dog?) and about where those dogs might come from. It then goes into how family dynamics change when we adopt a dog, and how we should educate ourselves on how to handle that dynamic successfully. With love and respect.
And yes, it's about how to put puppy mills out of business. 
Get your copies of the book here: https://www.doginternetofthings.ie/ (only $12.50)


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Debra Hamilton

Such an important conversation. Love this book and I give it to all contemplating pet ownership as well as those who already own pets. Tx Yvonne for spreading the word. Debra Vey Voda Hamilton

Billie Groom

This is a much needed book. It captures the importance of educating potential adopters in an easy-to-follow program that is both child and adult friendly. As the reader works their way through the book, they can make educated decisions as to what is best for their family and the potential new family member. Addressing animal welfare issues through hands-on solutions and education is essential. Thank you Ciaran for all your dedication, and thanks Yvonne for spreading awareness.


I was shocked when got to know how this puppy "industry" works and all the terrifying figures behind it. I hope more countries force a mandatory training course which you have to undergo before adopting a dog. But should we stop with the dogs?

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