Pet Expert Offers Spiritual Solutions When a New Shelter Dog Isn't the Perfect Gift

Best-selling animal book author and pet expert offers creative and nontraditional tips for calming the chaos, if life with a new shelter or rescue dog gets off to a disastrous start.

When a homeless dog unexpectedly becomes someone's gift, the generous gesture doesn't always turn out well. Best-selling author Allen Anderson found a one-year-old cocker spaniel named Leaf at an animal shelter. Even though he was a pet expert who had written over a dozen animal books, Anderson wasn't prepared for the chaos this traumatized dog brought to his life. After he tried and failed with traditional methods, Anderson explored spiritual ways of transforming the troubled dog into a valued family member. In his new memoir "A Dog Named Leaf" (Lyons Press/Globe Pequot Press, November 2012), Anderson shares the miraculous story of rescuing a dog who in turn, rescued him.

Anderson says, "The first night, Leaf fearfully howled like a wolf, went to the bathroom on our carpet and terrorized the cats. He was so scared and confused. It took creative solutions for him to become the happy and well-adjusted dog he is now."

Most people take a distressed animal to a veterinarian, enroll in a dog-training class, or consult animal behaviorists. Anderson did all those things but decided he also needed nontraditional resources for resolving Leaf's emotional issues.

"I found reliable animal communicators," Anderson says. "During one telepathic communication session Leaf bowed his head and confided: 'I got left.' Abandonment had destroyed his trust. We had to restore it."

Anderson suggests that people spiritually comfort stressed-out rescued dogs. Every day, he'd sit in his recliner in silent prayer with Leaf on his lap, the dog's head resting against his chest. As Leaf listened to Anderson's heartbeat, love became the greatest cure of all.

About Allen Anderson and "A Dog Named Leaf"

Allen Anderson is an inspirational speaker and coauthor of fifteen books about the benefits of pets as family members. In 1996 he and his wife Linda Anderson co-founded the Angel Animals Network to share stories about the spiritual lessons people learn from animals. Their book about animal rescue won a prestigious national writing award. The State of Minnesota issued a Certificate of Commendation in recognition of the Andersons' contributions as authors and they were named Partners and Friends of American Humane Association.

A Dog Named Leaf ($16.95, ISBN-10: 0762781654, ISBN-13: 978-0762781652), is available at major online book retailers, in bookstores, and at It became an Bestseller, Hot 100 New Releases Memoir and has been included in top ten lists for best animal books of 2012.