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Paperback 7” x 10″
66 pages with some color images



by Josie & Vernita Leins

“As soon as Mom held Marcel, they instantly bonded. She knew right away that he had to come home with us. At first, I thought it was a good idea, until I had to share Mom’s attention with the cat, then I became jealous. As Mom predicted, we eventually became friends and had fun adventures together. The day Mom rehomed Marcel, she was devastated. What is this bond between human and animal? Why is parting so difficult? As Mom shares her thoughts and insights, she challenges us to think about our connection with nature, the animals in our lives, and the very foundation of what it is to be human.”

—Josie, yellow Lab

“…Pet owners can learn a lot from this story, like how to bring a new animal into a household…Vernita’s outlook on the human–animal bond and what she calls the gift of nature, something everyone needs to search for. A pleasant read with thought-provoking ideas.”

—Dr. John Hunt, DVM, author, radio host, teacher

“I had a lot of fun reading Fostering Marcel. As a dedicated cat and dog owner, I recognized our own household in the relationship between Marcel and Josie. When cat and dog teamed up for their outdoor walks, it brought a smile to my face and reminded me of a cat named George, who would walk the field with our dog Tripper.

These animals become such an integral part of our lives and our families that it seems impossible to think of home without them. Thanks for sharing this tale of friendship and love.”

—Don Carrigan, author, Togus: A Coon Cat Finds a Home


Josie, a yellow Lab, is a coauthor with her mom, Vernita Leins. Together they share their personal experiences to encourage others to contemplate their own perspectives and relationships. Josie and her mom enjoy walks in the woods and living on a pond with Mom’s husband, Robert (Uncle Bob to Josie). Josie is a rescue and Mom’s trained service dog.

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