At first I wasn’t sure I could read a book about Michael Vick’s dogs. The world of dog fighting is a dirty rotten place, but the reviews for Jim Gorant’s book were so compelling that I decided to try. I am glad I did. Just as the subtitle states it is indeed a story of dog rescue and more importantly, redemption. The Lost Dogs chronicles the story of Vick and the Bad Newz Kennel, the raid on the kennel and then follows what happens to the dogs after they are taken from the rural Virginia location. Along the way readers learn about Vick, his friends and dog fighting and how they all came together and then all fell apart.
The story includes the detective work that leads to the arrest, trial and sentencing of Vick, but the main focus is really on the dogs. Fifty-one dogs were impounded during the raid. No one knew what would happen. Would they all be euthanized? In the end forty-seven of the dogs were saved and while not all are family pets far more than anyone originally thought are succeeding in a home situation. Gorant, a senior editor at Sports Illustrated, has written a book that will change peoples minds about pit bulls. It will also make the reader ask questions about why dog fighting continues to thrive and why there isn’t more done to stop it. It isn’t an easy read, but well worth it. The story, especially for the 47 dogs with new lives, is inspirational.