Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love by Larry Levin is a true story about a rescued bait dog who was found in a police raid with a chunk of his face gone. Placed in a ring as “bait” for illegal dog fights, Oogy had one of his ears bitten off. His friendly demeanour during extreme pain pays off because the animal hospital takes pity and after hours of surgery, saves his life. The Levins who have two adopted sons decide to adopt the one-eared Oogy too. Together, they live happily ever after.
Well kind of.
Oogy has to endure a couple more surgeries in his life. He gets stung by his electric fence and he never does catch that darn squirrel. But don’t let my sarcasm mislead you – Oogy is an incredible dog that I fell in love with as soon as I saw the cover. Levin is a lawyer by trade and at times, the writing shows. He likes to list off details where you really want him to talk about emotions.
This story shows us that happy-go-lucky attitudes pay off even when the world treats you terribly. And with a little help from the right people, you can bounce back. Oogy also raises awareness about the terrifying world of dogfighting (links to the Human Society of Canada website).
This is a mega-spoiler but the Levins later discover that Oogy is not a pit bull (as suspected originally), but a Dogo Argentino. Here’s what Oogy looks like compared to other Dogos: