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Publisher's Summary

A dog activist buys Michael Vick’s dogfighting compound. What could possibly go wrong? As it turns out...everything.

The house sat empty, an eerie white sentinel against the flat winter landscape, now guarding only whispers of the past. A six-foot white metal fence with coded entry gate lined the country road, abandoning its purpose at the property line and allowing passage to all with the temerity and curiosity to walk around. The bullet hole in the front window went unnoticed.

Tamira Thayne was alone, parked across the street, and early for her appointment with the Hampton Roads, Virginia realtor. Today was the day she’d tour Michael Vick’s former dogfighting compound, something she’d never imagined nor particularly wanted to do. It seemed pretty creepy, truth be told. Tamira felt the whispers surround her, reaching out. The rescuer in her wanted to rescue the ghosts, too; embrace the broken dogs who lay undiscovered and probably buried on the property, assure them they weren’t forgotten. She shuddered, pulling herself together.

The decision Tamira would make that fateful day in February 2011 would lead not only to a home for her nonprofit’s rescue dogs, but also to the most turbulent four years of her life: She faced down allegations of racism, community harassment, poisoning, and, ultimately, false charges aimed at driving her and Dogs Deserve Better from the county. There was a reason Michael Vick felt he could get away with dogfighting in Surry County, Virginia - and why he got away with it for as long as he did...

©2019 Tamira Thayne (P)2020 Tamira Thayne

What listeners say about It Went to the Dogs: How Michael Vick's Dogfighting Compound Became a Haven for Rescue Pups

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  • Overall
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A worthwhile read and quite satisfying.

Most of us never thought about what happened to Michael Vick’s dogfighting property after he was arrested and served time in federal prison. I was intrigued when I came across this book because I wanted to know why and how it became a home for rescued dogs instead. It didn’t disappoint, I genuinely feel like my curiosity is satisfied here. Makes for a great listen, and it gives a refresher on what all went down with the Vick case, as well as how Dogs Deserve Better, a nonprofit working to free dogs from chains, came across it and decided to purchase it. Much of what happened would go in the “truth is crazier than fiction” category, even delving into the local corruption that made the county the perfect choice for Vick to set up shop, and how that corruption then targeted the author for moving her organization there. Tells heart-warming tales of dogs rescued from the facility, and the wonderful plans the organization had for expansion. If, like me, you want to know “the rest of the story,” I highly recommend giving this book a listen.

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Sometimes truth is a hard pill to swallow.

This book was everything I thought it would be. Real, raw, uncensored. The book was more than a story it was a journey alongside the author. Her experiences became mine , thoughtful well expressed and truthful. Her book hit home with me as a Rescue I could relate to a lot of her tribulations. It went to the dogs verified to me that the plight of rescuing is nothing compared to the challenges faced when people get in the way of a meaningful mission and the story about dogs becomes a story about survival not just for dogs but for the human spirit. I am so glad Tamira decided to write this book. It is a necessary read for anyone embarking on a mission to help animals especially a breed like the pitbull which is so misunderstood. Animal welfare embodies so much more than you think and Tamira brings it home. There's a quote" the way a society treats animals can be a reflection of how it treats it's people. I appreciate how the author ties together animal welfare, human morale and politics to describe the bigger picture of animal welfare and the need for education, awareness and better laws to protect animals and humans alike.

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A story of strength with a bunch of dogs being rescued too!

I loved listening to this story! I will never understand why people feel the need to attack someone trying to bring some peace into the world. It seems animal rescue has the worst offenders. I love the vision and the programs implemented by Tami and DdB and I can only imagine what would have been if Tami didn’t have to defend herself at the same time. I am in awe of her strength and all she got accomplished. I find it difficult to read about abused animals, this is not that kind of book. It touches on it but most are the happy endings of the rescues. I highly recommend it. I hope Tami knows she has changed the world being the first to fight for chained dogs. And as each state continues to enforce stricter laws, it is because she started it.

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Riveting Story

I'm a big football fan and followed the story of Michael Vick pretty closely when it was occurring. It Went to the Dogs was such a great story of how the author made up for the tragedy of the Vick era and I was appalled at the trials and tribulations she faced in light of doing something so good for society and man's best friend. I am so glad she and Dogs Deserve Better prevailed. Regarding the performance, Melissa Kay Benson was superb. Wow, she held me on the edge of my seat!! As I listened to her, I imagined Tamira Thayne telling the story first hand; I was definitely drawn into the story as if I was there. Ms. Benson's pace was perfect and the depth of her characters was phenomenal. Overall, this was a great project and I look forward to future books by Ms. Thayne and Ms. Benson.

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pity party

premise of story is good. self serving soul cleansing is tedious. Political editorial at end QUITE unrelated and uncalled for. Looked at author issues in whole new light