Author Archives: Maria Goodavage

Win a Signed Copy of Top Dog!

Lucca and I are signing our books, and you could win one!

I’ve been spending this afternoon at my dining room table signing copies of Top Dog to send to my publisher for its various giveaways and events. As you can see, Mama Lucca, the hero Marine dog who’s the star of the book, has been lending a paw to the effort, via a rubber paw stamp created by her actual inked paw.

Would you like a chance to win a signed book? If so, leave a comment below about what you think of this expressive, three-legged specialized search dog. We’ll narrow the entries to our favorites, and then do a random drawing from among those next Monday. We’ll be in touch with the three winners to get mailing addresses. I’m not sure if my publisher will send them out then or after the Oct. 23 publication date, but either way, winners will have theirs by the end of the month. (Because we used to get so much spam, we now have to approve comments before they’re published. It could take up to a few hours to get to some, but all legit entries will be approved.)

If you don’t know much about Lucca, you can learn a little more about her on this site or by reading the recent Parade magazine book excerpt about her. Good luck!

Marine hero dog and handler reunite

  The last time Marine Sergeant Daniel Cornier saw his K9 partner Darko, the Belgian Malinois was sticking his nose through the bars of his kennel at Camp Pendleton, looking as devastated as Cornier felt. “It was horrible for both of us. He just knew,” says Cornier. That was in late 2012, not long after theyContinue Reading

Vietnam Marine Has Been Looking for Dog Handler for 40+ Years; Can You Help?

Can you help this Marine find a dog handler he was wounded with in 1968? (Tragically, the dog, Wolf, was KIA that day.) It would mean the world to him. He has been trying to no avail for more than four decades. The handler’s nickname was probably “Heck.” Please read on for more details. I’llContinue Reading

A Portrait of Rip V541: From Family Dog to WWII Hero to Handler’s Beloved Adopted Dog

In World War II, when the US war dog program was in its infancy, it depended almost entirely on people donating their dogs to the fight. I can’t imagine what it was like to say good-bye to the family dog – even in a time when dogs had a slightly different status in most homesContinue Reading

Navy SEAL Book Reveals New Information About Hero Dog in Bin Laden Raid

For anyone wondering if the brand-new book No Easy Day reveals much about the military dog who accompanied the SEALs on the Bin Laden raid, the answer is this: Although Cairo gets very little ink in the book, we do learn more about what he did. My publisher, Dutton (Penguin), launched this highly controversial bookContinue Reading

Guest Editorial: Please Handlers, Don’t Push to Adopt Viable War Dogs Too Early. Lives Are at Stake.

Earlier this week my Facebook page celebrated the reunion of Iraq war veteran and former dog handler Logan Black and his old bomb-sniffing dog, Diego. Thanks to the DOD’s military working dog adoption program, former Army Sgt. Logan Black was able to adopt 8-year-old yellow Lab after the dog was dispo’d from the MWD program.Continue Reading

Dispatches from Helsinki: Hero Dog Amputee Reunites With First Handler

There’s nothing like a reunion, especially with a military dog who saved your life – and the lives of many others – on numerous occasions during dangerous deployments. After too many months apart, you wonder if the dog will even recognize you, much less be happy to see you. Last week, Marine Gunnery Sgt. ChrisContinue Reading

How One Marine Saved Dozens of Dogs and Troops

Doesn’t the name “Captain Brandon Bowe” sound like some kind of American superhero? In a way, he really is. A recent feat this Marine accomplished will have far-reaching effects that could end up saving the lives of dozens of dogs, handlers, and anyone involved in today’s military missions. If you read my book Soldier Dogs,Continue Reading