Book Review: “Final Journey: Buddy’s Book” By Elizabeth Parker

A week ago I reviewed a wonderful book: Finally Home, Lessons On Life From A Free-Spirited Dog, by Elizabeth Parker. If you haven’t read the review I urge you to please read it before you continue on with this post.

From Elizabeth Parker Books:

After the publication of “Finally Home,” Buddy was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Once the unthinkable happened and Buddy’s precious life was cut short, his family was left heartbroken and devastated.

At the same time, in another state, poor economic conditions forced another family to give up their golden retriever.
As fate would have it, his name…was Buddy.
While they were mourning the loss of their beloved dog, another dog was mourning the loss of his treasured family.
Brought together by misfortune, they entered each other’s lives to help put back together the pieces of their broken hearts.
This story is for both Buddys, producing the subtitle “Buddys’ Book.”

Copyrighted © 2010 Elizabeth Parker

From Dakota’s “Mom” : As I sat down to begin reading this book there were a couple of reasons that I was not looking forward to it. One, was that after having read the first book I had completely fallen in love with Buddy, as did everyone  else whose life he touched.  I knew what was going to happen, and I knew my heart was going to break reading about it. The other reason was that I knew it was going to remind me of when my beloved “Soul Kitty”  (Bobo) passed back in 2007.

Wait! This is a dog blog and I am mentioning a cat? Yes. Buddy’s story is universal. It is written from the experience of owning and loving a unique and free-spirited dog, but it is a story that will resonate with anyone who has had to bid farewell to a cherished 4-legged family member.

Thankfully, other than when I was a little girl and we lost our 7-year-old Boxer to cancer (which I barely remember), I haven’t had to experience losing a dog to death. I know that one day it will happen with our precious Dakota, and it is something I try not to think about.

I have experienced the wretched pain of having to decide when it was “time” to let my baby stop suffering. I laid on the bed the day before, crying, thanking him for all he had given me those glorious 18 years. I told him what a wonderful cat he was, I thanked him for  comforting me, for his companionship, his love,  for protecting me and I begged him to give me some sort of “sign” that it was “time.” He did. He stopped eating. I had always said that when my food obsessed “boy” would stop eating I would know it was “time.”

I have experienced the pain of being with, loving and holding my pet in the last seconds of his life.

“I looked into his beautiful, soulful eyes and it made me realize that his trusting heart was depending on us to do the right thing. Only I did not know if we could actually follow through with it.”

I have experienced the pain of collapsing on top of my angel as the breath left his body. Shaking and shrieking, collapsing  heartbroken, into tear-stained fur.

I have experienced the nagging doubts after. Could something else have been done to save him? No. To this day I still second-guess that heartbreaking decision. Love does that to you. It makes you second guess even if you are certain it is the right thing to do.

“For all of those that are grieving their little angels, take comfort that they are no longer suffering and are playing together in that big playground in the sky.”

Will you cry while reading this book? YES.

Anyone who has loved and lost a pet will.

There are gifts that I received from reading this soul-stirring book:

I received the “gift” of reading the words that another pained “mother” had gone through during her dogs’ final days. My heart ached for her as she bared her soul on paper. I  felt a kinship, that someone UNDERSTOOD. That it isn’t just a dog, or a cat or a rabbit or whatever animal you lose, it is a MEMBER OF THE FAMILY. It is part of the fabric of who we are, they are part of our SOUL.


“And yet when I look forward to the future that I am so scared of, it is without my Buddy that I am most fearful of. Can you be soul mates with an animal?” YES…a RESOUNDING YES.  Someone understands, they GET IT.

I received the “gift” of learning about and loving Buddy (and then BOTH Buddy’s but you will have to read that for yourself) as told by the person who knew him best (his MOM).

There are many other gifts that are ripe for the picking tucked lovingly in the pages of this wonderful book. Is it all sad? No, not at all. You will laugh at some hilarious doggie antics, you will cheer for Elizabeth’s strength, her patience, her faith, her sense of purpose, her ability to help/rescue dogs, her ability to understand.  When you read this  book you will be able to  feel Elizabeth’s soul within the pages, you will feel her gratitude, courage, hope, peace.  But most of all….you will feel LOVE. Beautiful, unconditional, “golden” LOVE. 


Elizabeth Parker was born and raised in New York.

“As an avid dog lover, I volunteer for a few dog rescue organizations, as well as donate a portion of the proceeds from all of my books to some that I strongly believe in.” 

Elizabeth lives in Las Vegas, NV with her husband, their two beautiful golden retrievers and duck tolling retriever and the wonderful, loving memories of their golden retriever, Buddy.”

TO PURCHASE FINAL JOURNEY: BUDDY’S BOOK by Elizabeth Parker visit, Kindle, or Nook. You may also purchase it by visiting:

ISBN: 1453880828


We  were not compensated for this review. We received Elizabeth’s books to read/review. All opinions are our own.


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11 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Even reading your review makes my eyes teary. Dying animals always made me cry.
    I have experience the death of some of my father’s pets. That was hard even though they weren’t mine…I couldn’t imagine how sad I’d be if I lose one of my babies…even imagining it made me want to cry. I just hope they will live as long as they can…more than 30years (I hope).

    Poor Buddy. I accompanied my friend having her cat euthanized once…so sad 😦

    • I didn’t mean to make you cry! I am sorry!!! This book DOES have a good ending!


  2. Sometimes, I try not to read anything which has animals involved in it and I feel dreadful most of the time when the story comes to the climax which usually means the animals are in danger.

    Be it a dog, a cat, a lion, or even just a hamster, those stories always make me cry. When I say ‘cry’, I really mean CRY. If it’s a sad ending, I won’t feel happy for the rest of the day or even for the next few days. I think I’m just too over-emotional. 🙂

    • Priscilla I will say that I am the SAME…but…this actually has a happy ending….I would definitely read this book, it is sooo worth it!

  3. Your review was profound and evocative! Just what I went through with Licorice a year ago and Sam this past summer. This is a book I shall look for. Thanks Caren
    Nellie’s Mom

    • “Nellie’s Mom” THANK YOU that means A LOT. I deeply THANK YOU!

      I know you experienced the same with your precious Licorice and Sam…I DEEPLY know….be sure that if you read this book that you read the companion book as well (the one I reviewed last Monday)…you will LOVE them both!

      xoxoxoxo Dakota’s “Mom”

  4. I’ll have to prepare myself for this one!

    • yes but it is DEFINITELY worth it 🙂

      Barks and licks and love, Dakota and “Mom”

  5. What a wonderful book review. I so understand that pain of losing a furry ~ I lost my heart-cat Henry (1985 -2004) when he was almost 20 years old (I had him from when he was 8 weeks old). I too held him as his last breath left his worn out body. I still cry for him and miss him.

    Are you on FB?

    Jan (Milo and Alfie’s mom) xx

    • Oh Jan my heart just broke when I read this. You soooo understand and thank you for your kind words! I am so deeply sorry about your beloved Henry…how blessed you were to have him nearly 20 years (amazing!!!)…I am hurting for you as I read this and I totally understand. I cry for Bobo too…((((hugs)))) I know…

      Yes I am on Facebook under Caren Osrin Gittleman (my personal page)…I also have Cat Chat With Caren & Cody on Facebook and Dakota’s Den…all 3 of us are there!! I have to try and find you if I am not with you already!

  6. […] of the first books of Elizabeth’s that I had the honor of reviewing was: Final Journey: Buddy’s Book a tribute to her beloved Golden Retriever “Buddy” who after the publication of Finally […]

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