Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
One Dog at a Time

One Dog at a Time

Saving the Strays of Afghanistan

Pen Farthing

Thomas Dunne Books




The remarkable true story of one man's fight to save the stray dogs of Afghanistan in the spirit of From Baghdad, With Love

In the remote outpost of Now Zad, Afghanistan, Pen Farthing and his troop of young Royal Marines survive frequent engagements with the Taliban and forge links with the local community. Appalled by the horrors of local dog fighting, Pen has no choice but to intervene. Then one of the dogs he frees finds his way into the Marine compound—and into Pen's heart. Soon other strays are drawn into the sanctuary provided by the makeshift pound, including one young mother who crawls under the compound fence carrying her newborn pups to safety. As his tour of duty draws to an end, Pen cannot leave the dogs of Now Zad to their fates. He begins hatching plans to help them escape to a better life.

One Dog at a Time is the gripping account of one man's courage and humanity, and his fight to make a difference in the most hostile and dangerous environments, one dog at a time.


One Dog at a Time

No Going Back
Six months earlier

As I reached up high with my left hand, the tiny gritcovered edge my fingers grasped didn't really feel that solid. Even if it...


Praise for One Dog at a Time

“Kindness flourishes in an Afghan war zone, where British Royal Marine Farthing begins rescuing the starving strays nosing their way onto his compound. Offering food and love is a temporary solution, so Farthing hatches a dangerous plan to transport the dogs to a rescue sanctuary. Readers will come to know and love each mutt and to admire Farthing, whose caring doesn't end when his tour does: He now runs the Nowzad Dogs charity for animals of war.” —PEOPLE MAGAZINE

“A tale for true dog lovers.” —THE NEW YORK POST

“Pen's is a courageous story of how dog and solider become best friends in the most volatile of places and the unbreakable bond that exists between them. His commitment to his work in Afghanistan is inspirational, and is transforming dogs and our soldiers' lives, too.” —CESAR MILLAN, THE DOG WHISPERER

“One Dog at a Time provides the reader with an insider's view of life in an austere combat zone--both the terrifying and mundane events of daily life ‘at the tip of the spear'. For Farthing and his Royal Marine mates, life in Now Zad is countless hours and days of boredom among moments of sheer fear of the enemy's mortar attacks and the unknown of countless patrols into Taliban territory. In the midst of it all, the Royal Marines find their humanity through the strays they come to know and love and who become their mascots, friends and battle buddies, and, most importantly, help them maintain their sanity and compassion against the realities of their situation. One Dog at a Time allows us to glimpse, through the struggles of some of these four-legged strays, the struggles of an entire nation, and the heart-rending reality of life in war-torn Afghanistan. One can only hope the outcome is as good for the people of Afghanistan living in the Helmand Province as it was for the affable and lucky mutts who will surely win the readers' hearts.” —AY KOPELMAN, author of the New York Times bestselling FROM BAGHDAD WITH LOVE and FROM BAGHDAD TO AMERICA

“Set against the backdrop of the front lines of war, this is real-life adventure, a story of perseverance and the triumph of goodness.” —Library Journal

“You can taste the dust in this war-torn country and feel the torment of the Royal Marine author as you accompany him through this gritty narrative . . . In this emotionally charged read, Farthing captures the essence of everyday warfare and in the process details how teamwork and commitment of fellow Royal Marines and his wife save the lives of dogs most likely doomed to death. 'One Dog' is an engaging pick-me-up and a difficult put-down. Not only is it an impassioned homage to canine castoffs, but an inspiring lesson of one man's hope and commitment amidst huge geographical and cultural challenges.” —SEATTLE KENNEL CLUB

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Pen Farthing

A passion for the outdoors and a love of doing everything the hard way found an 18 year old PEN FARTHING visiting a Royal Marine careers office asking to take on the toughest infantry training in the world. 30 weeks later and Pen had earned the coveted Green Beret of the Commandos. His military career, which has included tours of Iraq and Afghanistan, lasted over twenty years. Since publication of One Dog at a Time, Pen has left the Marines to run his charity Nowzad Dogs and - when time allows - an outdoor adventure company. Pen walks his Afghan / Iraqi pack (Nowzad, Tali, Patchdog and Maxchat) in two shifts and has won The Dogs Trust Dog's Best Friend Award and the IFAW Pets and People Award. Nowzad and Tali were nominated for the Crufts Friends for Life Award.

Pen Farthing

Courtesy of Nowzad

From the Publisher

Thomas Dunne Books

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