By Alicia Dziak

Around here, people love their dogs. Whether it’s the annual Pet Parade, the Reindog Parade or just taking them for a ride or a stroll through town, it’s not hard to see that people are always up for a reason to show off their canine companions.

Another super cool way to show them off? Pay tribute to them in a book.

East Aurora author Barbara Eckert Ochterski has done just that with her new book, Call Me Monty.

“It’s a semi-fictional book for third to fifth grade children and adults who enjoy dogs,” Ochterski explained.

The book centers around Monty, a small and charming rescue puppy who needs a home and a family to call his own.

As a young dog, Monty is self-centered and thinks he can get through life acting like a wise guy show-off, and he has some things to learn. Happily adopted by a loving family, he settles into his forever home.

During his first year, Monty encounters new experiences and adventures and makes some canine friends that help him mature. Being energetic and playful are not the only qualities a good dog needs to develop. He begins to see that there are important rules, like being respectful and well behaved, that he must obey, and eventually he learns the important lesson that it is better to be well mannered and a friend and than simply a show-off.

The main character is based on Ochterski’s own dog by the same name.

“While we have always had dogs, it was clear when Monty stepped into our home that he had a special canine personality,” noted Ochterski about the basis for her book. “Being marooned inside for several winter months and watching him grow and learn gave me the idea, so I dedicated time to write the book.”

There are many dog books out there, but as much as dogs are unique, so Is each of the books based on those dogs. Ochterski describes her book as  “a loose string of vignettes about a puppy’s first months in his forever home. I also hoped to teach children a little about typical dog behavior through his adventures in the hopes they could better relate to dogs.”

She added, “I hope I captured his thoughts and playfully gave Monty his true voice, because if he could talk, I think these are ideas he’d be likely to have.”

The book, written and self-published this past winter, costs $11. You can get your hands on a signed copy by stopping by The Bookworm in East Aurora on Saturday, Oct. 3 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

“I will (in place of Monty) be doing the book signing. He wishes he could come,” joked Ochterski.

If you can’t make it to the signing, Call Me Monty is also available at

And stay tuned…a sequel is in the works!