If you’re a dog lover you might already have come across Finn, the superhero police dog who saved his handlers life and took a life threatening knife to the chest.
I had seen Finn and handler Dave Wardell’s story on the television some time ago then more recently came across them on Twitter where I discovered that their incredible story, Fabulous Finn was about to be published.
So I put in my order on Amazon and within a couple of weeks the publishing date arrived and Fabulous Finn dropped through my letterbox.
If Fabulous Finn had been a work of fiction it would have moved me just as much as it has done knowing it’s a true story because it is written so beautifully – just how I would imagine having a chat with Dave himself might be. It recounts the events of the terrible day Finn and Dave were attacked whilst crime fighting and follows Finn’s subsequent recovery. It’s not for the faint hearted and you will need tissues. I full on sobbed several times over the course of the book. It left me feeling so proud of Finn and Dave and I don’t even know them.
But this is not just a story of a policeman and his dog, nor is it just a story of the twelve year old boy who made it his mission to work with dogs. It’s not just a tale of triumph over adversity in Finn’s recovery. No. It’s so much more. It delivers a message. And the message is that the law in relation to service dogs needs to change in this country. For once you’ve read this remarkable tale of a man and his dog, you’ll discover that the assailant who attacked Finn received zero punishment for the terrifying wounds he inflicted on him. And that’s because in law Finn is regarded as ‘property’ and not as the sentient heroic being he so clearly is.
If you’ve ever loved a dog, if you’ve ever connected with a pet, you’ll know that they are far from property. Finn’s Law aims to change things and give service dogs the recognition, courtesy and respect they deserve. Finn saved Dave’s life that day. Police dogs go to work each day and they serve and protect. Finn’s story is a timely reminder when news headlines are dominated by knife crime that life is fragile and special and important whether you’re human or canine. Out of all my book reviews so far this year, this is the one that matters the most.
So if you’ve got a minute, type ‘Finns Law’ into Twitter, better still follow @davewardell, maybe even buy the brilliantly engaging book Fabulous Finn and read this incredible story. Or of course you could even engage with the campaign for Finns Law directly at finnslaw.com