Marley and Me: book vs. movie

The book was better. About a thousand times better.

I really wish I hadn’t read the book first, so I could have just enjoyed the movie for what it was.

But, I didn’t. And it kind of ruined the movie for me… kind of. I mean, I still liked it. I still cried and laughed and cried and awwed myself to death over the puppies. But the book – as is always the case when books are made into movies – was better.

One thing the movie did for me that I didn’t really get from the book was remind me of my first dog. Tippy was a border collie and Australian shepherd mix, and amazing. We got her for my second birthday and she was with me through it all. She was my best friend, my sister, my confidante, my partner in crime… 


I have no idea when this was taken, but I know she looks a little scraggly... we were most likely at the cabin, judging from the ground, so I'm sure she'd been running around like crazy. She loved it outside and especially loved the cabin.

And that might sound crazy to you, if you’ve never had a dog. But to me, dogs are so much more than pets. They’re members of the family and should be treated as such.

That’s why, when we finally had to put Tippy down, it was so hard on my mom and me. She had stayed behind with Mom when I went off to college, but even near the end, whenever I would go home to visit, Tippy would struggle to her feet and head for the door as quickly as she could to greet me. 

Tippy was 18 years old when we had to say goodbye. Most friendships – hell, most marriages – don’t even last that long. It was a very difficult time for me and I know it was even more difficult for my mom, who actually had to make the big decision.

I still miss her, years later, and get choked up when I see a picture of her. Sometimes Mom and I will talk about her and we always both end the conversation teary-eyed.

Thinking about all this scares me because I know I’m going to have to go through it all again and again. Velvet and Callie are both young but… well, their time will come. The thought makes me sick and almost makes me wish I didn’t have any pets to get attached to.

But they just bring so much joy!

And companionship. I’d probably have driven myself batshit crazy by now if I didn’t have the dogs, with Pete working nights and all.

This one’s for the dogs. The dogs still with us and the ones no longer here, and the dogs we love.


  1. sleepyjane Wednesday, January 14, 2009 3:44 pm

    “And that might sound crazy to you, if you’ve never had a dog. But to me, dogs are so much more than pets. They’re members of the family and should be treated as such.”

    That is why you’re awesome. My dogs are my children…if you haven’t noticed. haha

  2. E.P. Wednesday, January 14, 2009 5:52 pm

    I know how you feel. The way you felt about Tippy is the way my first dog, Dodger, was. He was an incredible dog, and he lived to be 17. And about your pups now? I cannot bear to think about Lucy getting older because it breaks my heart.

    As I tell friends, she’s my puppy child. (:

  3. Dutchess of Kickball Wednesday, January 14, 2009 7:36 pm

    Olivia is my child. Sometimes I hate her and don’t appreciate her the way I should, but I love every minute of our lives together. I can’t imagine my life without her.

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