A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron Discussion Questions

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

'A Dog's Purpose' by W. Bruce Cameron is a humorous and philosophical examination of life from the perspective of a reincarnating dog. This asset offers discussion questions to use with secondary students who are reading this novel.

A Dog's Purpose

What is the meaning of life? Men have pondered this question for centuries. A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron provides an opportunity for a dog to consider this question. Students will enjoy the funny and touching story of the dog's growth as it continues to be reborn as different types of dogs. Secondary students will learn about perspective and contemplate their own reason for being. The following questions support classroom discussions about A Dog's Purpose.

Chapter 1-10

  • Describe the narration style of this book. How does the narration style support reader engagement?
  • What are the dog's earliest memories? What are your earliest memories? What can early memories reveal about someone?
  • Describe Toby and Coco's relationship. How does their relationship change over time? Think about your childhood friendships. How have they changed?
  • Describe the conditions at the animal sanctuary. Do you agree that the conditions are inhumane? What are some solutions to overpopulation of dogs?
  • Explain Toby's death and rebirth. How is his new life different from the last? What are some traits of responsible pet owners?
  • What evidence backs up Ethan's family's claim that Bailey isn't very smart? What evidence disputes their claim?
  • What behaviors are considered 'good' and what behaviors are considered 'bad'? What are some things Ethan's family could do to proactively prevent 'bad' behavior?

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