True heart-shaped tale not to be missed


Just in time for the holidays, a wrenching true story with a beautiful ending — born out of the ugliness of a war zone. In Nubs, The True Story of a Mutt, a Marine & a Miracle we get to know (and come to love) a U.S. Marine and the dog he bonded with while serving in Iraq. The book contains everything dog lovers look for: love, loyalty, hope, compassion, bravery and the perseverance of a scrappy little dog that would not give up.

Nubs, so-named because his ears had been cut off to “make him a dog of war,” had every reason not to trust or even like people — but he did. With no person to call his own, Nubs was the leader of a pack of wild dogs, living a hard life, fighting for scraps and barely surviving harsh conditions. Then he met Marine Major Brian Dennis. The two had an instant connection, made stronger by Dennis’s quickness to share belly rubs, meals (including the occasional strawberry Pop-Tart), a warm place to sleep and care of a kind Nubs had never before received. 

Nubs quickly bonded with Dennis’s team, attempting to follow their rigs when they departed on brief missions, greeting them joyfully when they returned. When Dennis and his men were called to the Jordanian border over 70 miles away, Nubs was not ready for his new friend to go. Unaware that dogs were not allowed to stay in camps, Nubs followed, this time crossing the desert in brutal winter conditions, arriving thin, gaunt and worse for wear at the command fort, meeting the open arms of an amazed group of soldiers.

A dog enduring the hardship of such a trek would not be given up so easily. At least not by Dennis, who launched the Save a Nubs Fund to raise the money needed, and arranging the people and transportation to get Nubs to Dennis’ home in San Diego.

Written by Dennis, Kirby Larson and Mary Nethery, this colorfully packaged tale features scrapbook-style photos and emails documenting Nubs’ awe-inspiring actions, the challenges he endured, and the amazing friendship that blossomed between Nubs and Dennis. This heartwarming and inspiring book will touch readers of all ages.

As an avid animal lover, this powerful little book made me smile, moved me to tears, and truly demonstrated what Dennis told Paw Nation: “If you are kind to someone, they will never forget you — be it person or animal.”