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Praise for “The Boy who was Raised as a Dog”

June 2, 2011

I cringe a little when recommending a book called “The Boy who was Raised as a Dog” to my clients. I quickly assure them that despite the rather unfortunate title, this amazing book by Bruce Perry, MD is a MUST read if you are parenting a child who has experienced trauma.

Dr. Perry’s warm and heartfelt writing style made it easy to forget that I was reading a book written by a psychiatrist (No offense if you are a psychiatrist or love a psychiatrist- they are wonderful people!! Psychiatrists just usually write a bit more densely than Dr. Perry did in this book). I plowed through “The Boy who was Raised as a Dog” in a weekend and wanted it to go on and on. Dr. Perry combines case studies with science and teaches readers about his Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics. This groundbreaking research is CRUCIAL to understand if you work with or parent children who have a history of trauma. I particularly loved Perry’s advocacy of massage, music, and movement therapies. Children who experienced neglect and deprivation in their early childhoods missed out the natural music and rhythm used by mother’s to calm their babies. To think that early-childhood music classes can help children’s brains heal from trauma- this is truly astounding!

Medical and mental health professionals should aspire to have the compassion and commitment to children that Dr. Perry clearly brings to each and every family he works with. I am looking forward to learning more about Dr. Perry’s Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics and his work at the Child Trauma Academy.


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Robyn Gobbel, LCSW is a child and family therapist in Austin and Bastrop Texas specializing in adoption and attachment counseling.

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