Pages & Paws

Writing, Reading, and Rural Life With a Border Collie

TTT: Dynamic Duos



It’ time for another edition of Top Ten Tuesday. This week’s topic is “dynamic duos.” If you’re thinking Aragorn and Arwen, Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy, or Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark, think again.

Because this week we’re featuring one of the most Dynamic Duos we’ve ever read: Barby Keel and Bailey.

Who? You’re saying. I’d be saying that too if I hadn’t recently read Barby Keel’s Will You Love Me? The Rescue Dog That Rescued Me.

Barby is the author of the Foster Tails series. She’s also the founder and head honcho at the Barby Keel Animal Sanctuary in Sussex, U.K.

“Bailey” is a horribly abused and mistreated greyhound who’s dumped at the sanctuary’s gate on a sodden, freezing night. The poor dog is so far gone, he isn’t expected to last the night.

Against all odds, Bailey rallies.

The rest is an extraordinary story about the power of unconditional love and compassion, both human and canine. The author tells how the gentle greyhound slowly becomes a “kindred spirit” as she faces her own challenges, both physical and emotional.

Told with immense honesty, empathy, and a Mount Everest of emotion, this true story packs a wallop as it shows how caring for a sick or injured animal can result in human healing, too. Indeed, Barby and Bailey’s story is one of the most touching and uplifting we’ve ever read. (See our full review here.)

Book Cover

That’s why Barby Keel and Bailey are topping this week’s edition of Dynamic Duos.


FYI: The Barby Keel Animal Sanctuary is:

a non-profit making charity rehoming or providing permanent refuge for abused, abandoned and unwanted animals. We operate a no destruction policy.

More Dynamic Duos

Some more Dynamic Duos who also made the cut (in no particular order):

– Old Dan and Little Ann from the Wilson Rawl’s story about a boy growing up in the Ozarks with his two redbone hound dogs, Where the Red Fern Grows. A beloved classic.

Wilbur and Charlotte from E.B. White’s barnyard classic, Charlotte’s Web. “Some pig!”

 – Agba the stable boy and Sham, the magnificent desert stallion who becomes the legendary Godolphin Arabian in Marguerite Henry’s King of the Wind.


–  Winn Dixie and Opal Buloni from Kate DiCamillo’s Because of Winn Dixie. Unforgettable.


Elsa the Lioness and Joy Adamson from Adamson’s Born Free: A Lioness of Two Worlds.  The true story of an African lioness and the humans who loved her enough to set her free. One of the most powerful and poignant “animal stories” I’ve ever read. For my full review, click here.

Who would you add?



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish,
Now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl 

20 thoughts on “TTT: Dynamic Duos

  1. I like that you featured so many animal companions. I found a few but not so many. Dan and Little Ann–I could cry just thinking about that book!

    Great list!

  2. Aw! I love the animal duos. Such a cool way to do this topic!

  3. Barby Keel and Bailey! The books sounds great! And of course Charlotte and Wilbur. Great list!

  4. Love your list. I hadn’t heard of Bailey before. I will have to check it out. Wilbur and Charlotte are a wonderful choice. Thanks for sharing and for visiting my blog.

  5. The ones of these I know are all sad but animals are always good companions!

  6. This is an awesome list! Pet stories get to me more than pretty much any other story. So heartwrenching all of them!

  7. Great answers, fun that we have Winn-Dixie in common!

  8. Awww! I love your list. Old Dan and Little Ann!

  9. Great take on this week’s prompt! I don’t think I’ve seen anyone do the animal duos 😍

  10. OK, I absolutely love the animal theme you’ve gone with here. I definitely considered doing this too: Marty & Shiloh; Danny & (Big) Red; Jim Thorpe and Silver Chief (Dog of the North), and then I’d probably have to pick a little more carefully through my horse and dog shelves to pick favorites, but would definitely include a Dorothy Lyons and a Marguerite Henry somewhere.

    Speaking of which, Agba + Sham = a particularly great choice, popular enough to be known but, I am betting, not a popular choice of book for any theme, so thanks for spotlighting it).

    I’ve never read Where The Red Fern Grows…I’ve done my sad time with Old Yeller and probably a few more, so now I’m gonna exclusively give myself over to the old boy-and-his-dog(s) books that AREN’T devastating.

    Elsa and Joy Adams = another great pick.

    Also, I’m so excited to read that first book, but also hate it a little bit (not really) for so effectively and deliberately sucker-punching us in the heart muscle. THAT title and THAT face??

    • Yeah, I know. THAT title and THAT face. 🙂 But it’s a good read with a happy ending.

      Oh yes! Danny and Big Red! A classic. And Agba and Sham should be more widely read. Great story. If you ever get to Where The Red Fern Grows, stock up on tissue. It’s also a movie. The theme song is sung by Andy Williams. More tissue.

      Elsa and Joy are old favorites. Another book that deserves a wider audience. Thanks for commenting!

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