I was watching Animal Planet the other day when this show called Cats 101 came on. It was a segment about short-haired Orientals, and it focused on a woman with a 10-year-old autistic son, whose life was drastically changed through animal therapy with their two Oriental cats. Before they got the cats, the boy struggled to express himself and never talked about his feelings to anyone. But once they'd had the cats for a while, his mom would catch him talking to the cats, telling them about his day. And whereas before he'd had trouble getting up in the morning, he'd now rise several hours early so he could feed and play with the cats. His mom called it a miracle. And, apparently, this has worked for other kids as well. Journalist Rupert Isaacson has written a book about his own son's struggle with autism and how the boy learned to connect with the world by riding horses. The Horse Boy: A Father's Quest to Heal His Son tells the story of Rupert and his son Rowan's journey to Mongolia, where horses and shamanic healing intersect. Rupert will be signing and discussing the book at Barnes & Noble, 7700 W. Northwest Highway, at 7 p.m. Wednesday. For more information, call 214-739-1124.
Wed., April 15, 7 p.m., 2009