Can I Be Your Dog?
Can I Be Your Dog?

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Annotation: A dog looking for a home sends letters to prospective owners on Butternut Street, with surprising results.
Catalog Number: #170758
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Publisher: Random House
Copyright Date: 2017
Edition Date: 2018
Pages: 40
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-399-55452-1 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-3081-6
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-399-55452-0 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-3081-5
Dewey: E
LCCN: 2015043998
Dimensions: 26 cm.
Language: English
Reviews:
ALA Booklist
Arfy, an optimistic mutt who sleeps in a cardboard box in the alley, writes a series of amusing letters aimed at finding himself a new home. First, he sends notes to the family in a cheerful-looking house and to the butcher. He brags to the fire department that he knows his way around a fire hydrant. He offers to guard the junkyard. He even tries a smelly, tumbledown house. After a series of rejections, he receives an unexpected offer from the mail carrier who delivered his letters. Will he be her friend through "snow, rain, heat, or gloom of night?" Yes! Written with wit and empathy, the story unfolds entirely through the dog's correspondence and the energetic, colorful digital illustrations, which have a retro, cartoonlike sensibility. Just as Arfy's letters shift in tone from buoyant to hopeful to disheartened, the replies shift from polite to remote to downright mean, making the story's resolution even more satisfying. Sure to win the hearts of dog-lovers, this big, colorful picture book is fun for reading aloud.
Kirkus Reviews
A large, lonely dog named Arfy writes letters to residents of Butternut Street asking to be adopted so he won't have to continue living in a cardboard carton in an alley.Arfy introduces his story in a winning way on the cover by holding out an envelope with the title words in bold, hand-lettered print. The talented dog is shown holding a pencil in his mouth to write his first letter, which is delivered by a brown-skinned, female mail carrier with straight black hair. Arfy writes to each house or business on his street, but everyone turns the dog down for a different reason. Both the letters and responses are creatively composed in varying styles of lettering, from hand printing to typeface, and with humorous approaches, such as a form letter from the fire department saying "the position of: FIRE DOG has already been filled." The same mail carrier delivers each letter, looking increasingly worried about Arfy, and in a satisfying and surprising conclusion, she writes her own letter to Arfy offering to "be your person." The final endpapers show a map version of Butternut Street and the post office, with Arfy helping the mail carrier with her delivery route. A large format and bold, exuberant illustrations are well-matched with Arfy's enthusiastic personality and can-do attitude. The letter format makes this a fine choice for early-elementary students learning to compose letters.Persuasive writing by a persistently pleasing pooch. (Picture book. 4-8)
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
ALA Booklist (3/1/18)
Kirkus Reviews
School Library Journal
Word Count: 441
Reading Level: 2.3
Interest Level: P-2
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 2.3 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 195196 / grade: Lower Grades
Guided Reading Level: K
Fountas & Pinnell: K

The New York Times bestseller featured on THE TODAY SHOW!

A heart-tugging dog adoption story told through letters--deeply sincere and almost desperate pleas for a forever home--from the dog, himself!


This picture book shares the tale of Arfy, a homeless mutt who lives in a box in an alley. Arfy writes to every person on Butternut Street about what a great pet he'd make. His letters to prospective owners share that he's house broken! He has his own squeaky bone! He can learn to live with cats! But, no one wants him. Won't anyone open their heart--and home--to a lonesome dog? Readers will be happily surprised to learn just who steps up to adopt Arfy.

Troy Cummings's hilarious and touching story is a perfect gift for a child wanting a dog, and for pet adoption advocates. It also showcases many different styles of letter writing, making it appealing to parents and teachers looking to teach the lost art of written communication.

"It's an instant classic in our household." --#1 New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas


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