Hope – How Street Dogs Taught Me the Meaning of Life
Featuring Rodney, McMuffin and King Whacker
by Niall Harbison
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Pub Date 17 Oct 2023 | Archive Date 07 Nov 2023
Harper 360, HarperElement
Most people think I save dogs, but really they saved me.
Niall Harbison is a dog hero based in Thailand. He spends his days feeding, caring for and rescuing the many street dogs he comes across. With every rescue there’s a story. Like the sweet gentle McMuffin who was found with many tumours and hours from death, only to be nursed back to health. She now lives with Niall and is a popular member of the pack. Then there is King Whacker – who escaped a vicious attack and is now ruling the nest living up to his name as the king of the all good dogs. And who could resist the puppy eyes of little Rodney, the beautiful dog with big paws who is melting millions of hearts around the world.
Originally from Dublin, Niall was the owner of a successful advertising company. After selling it, he moved to Thailand where his addictions – drugs and alcohol – almost got the better of him. One day he woke up in hospital, close to death, and realised that something had to change. And that was what spurred him on to start saving and helping street dogs. His aim is to help 10,000 street dogs.
This is his story.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 7 members
I really enjoyed reading this, it had a uplifting message and that it does everything that I was hoping for in a this type of memoir. Niall Harbison writes this in a beautiful way and I appreciated getting to know his story from this book.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing this book in exchange for an honest review.
Rescue dogs are the best!
The author tells his story of his parent's divorce when he was a child and how he turned to alcohol and drugs to bury his pain. He created a few successful businesses and luckily, one gave him great income.
When his instinct took him to Thailand and he saw all the of street dogs needing love and attention, he devoted his time, money, and energy all into at least making the street dogs' lives better.
Niall is amazing and it's so awesome to see the positive difference he makes in so many dogs' lives.
This was a book I couldn’t read fast enough. If you are an animal lover this is one book you need to read.
I recommend this book.
I received a copy from Netgalley for my honest review
Though his career path changed from chef to running online businesses, Niall Harbison remained successful. With that success, however, came anxiety, depression and addiction. And also, support in the form a doggo named Snoop.
This is a book about resilience, kindness, and gratitude—courtesy of the best teachers of all: dogs. Harbison had gone through some dark times but never blames and never expects the reader to pity him. Harbison now spends his time in Thailand, feeding, rescuing, and caring for the street and jungle dogs over there. This book describes the emotions, efforts, and wonderful heart and spirit of those that work with dogs who don’t have a forever home (or at least not just yet 😊). Harbison describes all of this with skill and without coming across as preachy or judgmental.
Plus, the reader gets to meet some of the most wonderful doggos in the book! It is inspirational to see how much love and happiness these dogs have—even though some of them have faced an atrocious past.
You can catch a glimpse of the amazing things Harbison does on his page (I’m rooting for Cindy Crawford and her progress). Proceeds from Niall’s book go towards the construction of a hospital for the dogs, in memory a special dog named Tina.
Loved it. Both times heart breaking and triggering, this is a raw, unfiltered story about coming out of addiction and finding a new purpose in life by rescuing the dogs of Thailand.
A touching story that brought up a lot of emotions for me as I've struggled with anxiety for many years. I have never been as bad off a Niall but I could feel for him and his continued efforts to better himself. Reading his back story is not for the faint of heart. He has really been through hell and back, but he came out on the other side and is really doing a lot of good and it's fulfilling his life in a way he never expected. I loved the stories about the individual dogs that he's trying to rescue in Thailand and my heart went out to each of them and their situations. I think I would end up trying to take them all home and falling a part when they couldn't be rescued or saved. I've loved dogs all of my life and anyone who is an animal lover would enjoy Niall's story of perseverance and his strong devotion to taking care of these living creatures that are left to fend for themselves and sometimes brutalized just because they are street dogs.
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