Synopses & Reviews
David Freis heartwarming collection of stories about the therapy dogs in his life and the people whom they touch, Angel on a Leash celebrates the ministry” that Frei shares with his wife, Chaplain Cherilyn Frei, the director of spiritual care at the Ronald McDonald House of New York.Frei may be the most recognizable face and name in the dog sport, as the Voice of Westminster,” the famous New York kennel club for which he has worked for the past two decades, but his true passion in dogs is therapy work.
In the books eighteen chapters, Frei retells the stories of the everyday miracles hes witnessed his therapy dogs perform over hundreds of trips to their favorite places. Currently in his second generation of therapy dogs, Frei gives his Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Angel” and Brittany Grace” all the credit for the life-altering work they do cheering up ailing children at Morgan Stanleys Childrens Hospital, spending time with recovering patients at NewYork- Presbyterian Hospital, and placing a paw in the hand of world-weary veterans at the Washington DC VA Medical Center.
Never sappy or sentimental, Freis writing style is straightforward and honest with a swiftness that keeps the reader turning pages (and wiping tears). Beyond the inspiring storytelling, the book also offers practical advice to potential therapy dog handlers about how to get a dog certified with a proper registry, the responsibilities that accompany therapy work, and the importance of community involvement.
Freis association with Westminster yielded the formation of a nonprofit organization called Angel on a Leash (the books namesake), which Frei was the key founder. Although the organization is now a separate entity from its famous parent,” Best in Show winners of Westminster have frequently retired from the show ring into the realm of therapy work, receiving Freis encouragement and guidance. Among the many exquisite moments captured in the books photography section are portraits of Rufus, the Colored Bull Terrier; James, the English Spring Spaniel; and Uno, the Beagle, all supreme victors of the famous show, spending time with children on therapy visits.
"Angel on a Leash will make you smile and cry and appreciate the great things that our dogs do for us and for people in need. My longtime friend David Frei has written a heartwarming book about his work with therapy dogs and the human-animal bond. So ready, put the book down, hug your dog, and repeat, again and yet again. I love it and so will you! You will want to reread this one." - Betty White
"Therapy dog work helps you and your dog teach one another and learn from one another. David Frei's Angel on a Leash is a terrific lesson in how that happens. David and his dogs love and trust each other, and this has enabled him to make it his life's work to share hope with people in need. It has also given him many wonderful stories to share with us in the heartwarming book. I couldn't put it down." - Cesar Millan, The Dog Whisperer
"When a dog wags his tail, is is connected to his heart. When David tells these stories of the dogs he has known and the good that they've done, they are connected to his." - John O'Hurley, from the foreword
David Frei, the publicist of Westminster Kennel Club and the founder of Westminsters therapy dog charity, Angel on a Leash, along with his wife Cheri, a minister at Morgan Stanley Childrens Hospital of New York-Presbyterian, retell heartwarming stories of therapy dogs who change the lives of needy children at hospitals and rehabilitation centers. angelonaleash.org
David Frei, the voice of the Westminster Kennel Club and the founder of Westminster's therapy dog charity, Angel On A Leash, shares stories of heartwarming encounters and everyday miracles that he's witnessed in his work with therapy dogs that change the lives of children, adults, and seniors at hospitals and rehabilitation centers.
About the Author
David Frei is well known to millions of television viewers as the longtime co-host (21 years) of the popular Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
In connection with that role, he has made many appearances on "The Today Show," "Good Morning America," "The Early Show," "Ellen," "The View," "Martha Stewart," "Charlie Rose" and more. He has been director of communications for the Westminster Kennel Club since 2003. David also has been co-host on NBC of "The National Dog Show" on Thanksgiving Day since its inception, a telecast seen by about 20 million viewers every year.
A longtime breeder-owner-handler and judge in the world of purebred dogs, he has enjoyed much competitive success with his Afghan Hounds and Brittanys. Ch. Stormhill's Who's Zoomin Who was the #1 Afghan in 1989 and retired as the top-winning female in the history of the breed. David has also exhibited his Brittanys in conformation and field trials. A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy named Angel recently joined the family and is a newly certified therapy dog.
With Westminster, David helped to create Angel On A Leash, a charitable activity supporting therapy dog programs at health care facilities around the country. David is an active volunteer as well, visiting each week with his two Brittanys and his Cavalier at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and the Ronald McDonald House of New York.
He is a member of the Sports Council of the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and does volunteer work with Transfiguration Church and School in New York's Chinatown.
In 2009, the Dog Writers Association of America awarded him the American Kennel Club Distinguished Service Award, and in 2010, the World Dog Press selected him for their Media Award.
David is the co-author, with Mike Lingenfelter, of The "Angel By My Side", a critically-acclaimed best seller about a heroic service dog, published in 2002 (www.angelbymyside.com). And in 2004, he appeared in one of the final episodes of the HBO hit series, Sex And The City, playing a dog show judge.