Thumb through a few chapters of One Nation Under Dog and you’ll probably recognize someone you know – you! It’s all there, the doggie daycare, the designer pup ensembles, the joyful, albeit borderline obsession with our dogs. In his riveting just-released book, author Michael Schaffer explores the changing place pets hold in our society. From loyal servant to best friend to “fur baby,” he follows the great American dog’s journey to that cozy spot on your bed. 

Meet members of New York’s booming Chihuahua social networking group, the dedicated lawyers on Chicago’s pet lawsuits, and Philadelphia’s inundated pet-loss bereavement counselors. Even take a ringside seat to the dog-park politics of San Francisco, a city with more dogs than children. One Nation Under Dog introduces you to the people and pets that support the $40+ billion a year American pet industry (a figure that’s more than doubled in the past ten years) and charts just how we got here. But more importantly, this exceptional read offers something we don’t hear at puppy playgroups: sparkling insights into what our modern pet parenthood says about our cultural values and priorities (pet spas for all!). Pick up it. We know you’ll love it as much as we did.

The Scoop:

One Nation Under Dog: Adventures in the New World of Prozac-Popping Puppies, Dog-Park Politics, and Organic Pet Food, by Michael Schaffer.


Read Time magazine’s interview with the author for a sneak peak of the observations covered in his book.

Thank you to garyt70 on flickr for the photo of Tinker.