The main purpose of writing Fraggle’s Second Chance: How a Little Dog’s Life Changed from Bad to Good, to Heavenly is to make a wide age range of readers aware of the horrible conditions dogs are subjected to when born and raised in puppy mills.
All puppy mills are not the same. Some treat their dogs with respect, care for them properly, but unfortunately not all. Readers need to see how an abused, neglected and mistreated little dog can be saved, loved and given a new home filled with kindness.
It all started by chance. As the author, A.F. Miller was thumbing through the local newspaper when he came across a picture of a small scruffy little dog being offered up for adoption at our local PetSmart by Second Chance Rescue on Saturday.
How one day, the Fraggle’s and A.F. Miller lives changed
To this day I cannot tell anyone what inspired me to want to meet this dog. My wife and I had not discussed getting a dog. Anyway, Saturday morning 10/05/2013 I asked her to go for a ride. She wanted to know where and I replied, it’s a surprise. When I got to PetSmart we went in and I asked for the pet adoption area. There we were introduced to Debbi Root, Director of Flagler County Second Chance Rescue. When I asked to see Fraggle, she said he wasn’t there but at a foster home. We could still see him if the foster lady was home, fortunately, she was.
When we entered her home, Fraggle was on the far end of the couch. He was worse than his picture in the paper. This poor little guy was by far the “Scruffiest” dog I have ever seen. We asked the lady how he was doing and she replied OK, but still had a long road to full recovery. He had been shaved nearly to the skin to rid him of ticks, fleas, and sores after being rescued. My wife sat down on the other end of the couch. Fraggle immediately got up, walked to her, laying his head on her leg and looked up at her with big round eyes that were saying, please take me home. We were hooked on him immediately and knew right then and there he was our dog”
He rode all the way home cuddled against my wife’s chest. We introduced him to our lawn and when I placed him on the grass he froze in place. It was then we realized he had probably never touched grass before. After a while, he got used to grass and now loves running around in it. I bought him a kennel and immediately removed the door. I did not want him to be near anything that might remind him of his past. His kennel has a large doggie pillow in it and has become his happy place when he just wants to be alone and sleep. He has two other beds, three if you count our bed where he sleeps at night, and three large doggie pillows. There has not been a day since adopting Fraggle that he hasn’t brought a smile to our faces or made us laugh. He has many neighborhood friends both human and animal, especially Rosie. He loves our daily walks, chasing birds on the beach, riding in his stroller at the flea market and traveling in our car. He is a great traveler. I place one of his beds in the back seating area where he spends most of his time sleeping. He has been to Arizona twice and Illinois on several occasions to visit family.
Fraggle’s Second Chance: How a Little Dog’s Life Changed from Bad to Good, to Heavenly
By A. F. Miller
Genre: Pets & Animal Care
Paperback: 28 pages
About A.F. Miller
A little about myself and how I came to writing his story. I went into the Army in 1960 two weeks after graduating from high school. Shortly after my discharge I was hired by a major manufacturing company, went through a 4-year apprenticeship and graduated directly into management. During the next 30 years, I was fortunate to promote to upper management. Up until almost three years ago, I had never written anything except monthly business reports to my bosses, never anything of a literary nature. However, after living with and seeing Fraggle’s transition into a beautiful, happy and healthy dog, I wanted to take a stab at writing a story about his life. Most of my information about puppy mills, although limited, came from Debbi Root and Terri Rosado. I admit the first half of the book is fictional having not actually been there. The second half is a factual account of his life with us after being adopted. Not being an experienced writer, it took me 4 months to complete a rough draft. Upon completion, I wanted to get some feedback. I had Debbi Root and Terri Rosado read my rough draft with explicit instructions to be open and candid about it. Their comments are in the back of the book, but both insisted I have it published. I had my 83-year-old brother-in-law who is considered by many as a mans-man and sort of macho read the rough draft. When finished, he had small tears on his cheeks, looked me directly in the eyes and said, “Al doesn’t change a word and get this published”. I also had Ms. Donna Giglio, a first-grade teacher living near us, read the rough draft. In less than an hour, she was at our front door and told me she had tears in her eyes as she read it and advised me to get it published – end of story.
Since then I got my book published. I was allowed to bring Fraggle to the school and do a reading for Ms. Giglio’s first-grade class. This was one of the most satisfying days of my life as the kids sat on the floor in front of me and focused on every word I read. Fraggle sat in his stroller throughout the reading not making a sound. When finished Ms. Giglio asked if Fraggle could get out of his stroller so the kids could pet him. The kids had returned to their desk, so Fraggle went from desk-to-desk when I put him down and individually let each kid pet him; it was a beautiful moment to witness. Pictures of this were featured in our local newspaper and in the schools class yearbook.
Fraggle just turned 16 years old on 12/05/18. He is slowing down slightly, but still a very healthy little dog. Attached is a picture of him and I doing one his favorite things;- a relaxing belly scratch.