Dozer's Run: A True Story of a Dog and His Race

When Dozer the Goldendoodle broke out of his big fenced-in yard to join the 2,000 human runners in the Maryland Half Marathon, he was chasing adventure and fun, and he found them both.  With his big tail waving like a flag and his friendly dog-smile, Dozer ran his way into the hearts of the human runners he encountered along the route, all of whom were running to benefit the University of Maryland Greenebaum Cancer Center.  But he also left his family frantic with worry, and, as night fell, Dozer’s adventure took a turn for the worse.  This is the true story of a plucky and playful dog whose bigheartedness will entertain, inspire, and offer children a fresh way to think about how they–like Dozer!–can help others.

Sleeping Bear Press
Ages 4 up
ISBN 978-1-58536-896-9

Buy the book: IndieBound | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Book Trailer!


* Winner of the 2016 Keystone to Reading Elementary Book Award (Pennsylvania) *

* Winner of the 2016 Bill Martin, Jr. Picture Book Award (Kansas Reading Association) *

“. . . an engaging, believable tale that will resonate with young readers and listeners. . . . With obvious appeal to animal lovers, this could also be used to start conversations about empathy and community activism.”

“. . . inspirational. . . . Readers will surely be motivated by this book to ‘take steps, big and small, to help others.'”
–School Library Journal

“. . . Dozer is a charmer. . . .”
–Kirkus Reviews

“Used as a read aloud for young children this story will inspire altruistic and community spirited support for worthy fund-raising.”
–Reading Today (International Reading Association)

“. . . wonderfully inspiring. . . first rate.”
Nationally syndicated columnist Kendal Rautzhan

2015 Storytelling World Resource Awards Honor book

2014 USA Best Book Awards Finalist, Nonfiction Children’s Picture Book category


Dozer with his medalYou can watch videos about Dozer at these links
Dozer crossing the finish line of the Maryland Half Marathon (YouTube video)
ESPN:  “Dozer the Dog Runs Solo Maryland Half Marathon”

More Dozer delightfulness
Quotes from runners who ran the Half Marathon with Dozer

Fighting cancer
The University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center
This is the cancer research and treatment center that benefits from the pledges raised by the annual Maryland Half Marathon.

The Maryland Half Marathon–runners raise funds for the Greenebaum Cancer Center

If Dozer can do it. . .
. . . so can you.  Kids can help others just as Dozer did in his run!  A recent study from the United Nations Foundation and Indiana University says that young people are a “philanthropic force,” and that 9 out of 10 American children give money to charitable organizations.  Here are links to information about how kids can get involved in giving their time and imagination as well as funds.

Big Hearted Families has ideas and tools to help families “live generously,” as this nonprofit puts it, by engaging in small and large acts of service, kindness, and compassion.

GenerationOn,  a division of Points of Light, is all about helpings kids and teens change the world through their own actions, with information about existing projects and causes, and fact sheets and guides for kids to make their own mark.

Ryan’s Well had its beginnings when Ryan Hreljac, a first-grade boy in Canada, learned at school of the challenges that people in developing countries face in obtaining clean water.  At the age of 7, he raised money for construction of a well for a school in Uganda.  Ryan went on to raise funds for many more water projects.  He created Ryan’s Well Foundation to get others, especially kids, involved in his passion for improving lives through access to safe water and sanitation.

Alex’s Lemonade Stand started when 4-year-old Alexandra Scott decided that she wanted to have a lemonade stand to raise money to help cure children with cancer.  Alex herself was a cancer patient, and her first lemonade stand raised $2,000.  Despite her illness, Alex continued to hold annual lemonade stands until her death at the age of 8.  Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation encourages children and schools to raise money for cancer research. gets its teen members engaged in projects ranging from teens for jeans to animal welfare to recycling.

RandomKid is an organization whose mission is to help kids create their own projects to help others.  Read about some of the creative and inspiring projects kids have come up with here.  Read about the girl who started RandomKid here.

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