This book was left in the volunteer area of the local Humane Society -- where I am a volunteer who also happens to be working on a book about my experiences. The note on it said that it was quite a good read and was available free to the next reader.I took it home and read a rollercoaster of a book that described Hess's experiences as a volunteer at a small animal shelter in upstate New York -- and that allowed me to see how far we've come in terms of humane education and animal welfare.While every state's anti-cruelty laws differ, I can only say that 1998 was a far different time. This book was written before a craze for "doodle dogs" led to mutts being purchased for sums well into the thousands of dollars from backyard breeders -- while animals of the same parentage languish in shelters awaiting homes. Likewise, more and more states have felony animal cruelty laws now. In 1998, a harsh sentence on cruelty charges was a rarity.The good news is that one things has not changed: the passion and commitment of shelter workers and volunteers to rehome animals with the right family so that they may live out their lives in happiness and kindness. Hess's book shows the difficulties of dealing with puppy mill owners, negligent owners -- and the delights of happy families who fall madly in love with the new best friend they found in a shelter.