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This Dog's an Elephant's Best Friend

tarra-and-bellaRemember the elephant in Annie? In the Little House on the Prairie shows?

Tarra has left her acting days behind her for the solitude of The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee, but she was back in the spotlight this year as the amazing elephant with a dog for a best friend.

Apparently, she just can’t get enough – Tarra the elephant and her canine companion are the new faces peering out of a children’s book set to hit stands in a few weeks.

For families who called their kids into the room when CBS profiled the pachyderm and pooch back in January on Katie Couric’s evening news show, the new book from G.P. Putnam’s Sons is a way to keep the story of celebrating your differences alive for kids. Stocked with sweet photos of Tarra and her best buddy Bella, the eponymous Tarra & Bella puts an animal tale on kid terms. Retired elephants at the sanctuary traditionally pair up with a buddy, but Tarra didn’t have a best friend . . . until Bella.

And when Bella is hurt, the eight-thousand pound elephant can’t be moved from her side.

A back-to-school story for the new kid, perhaps, on finding friends in unlikely places? Or a good “love the earth . . . and all its creatures” tale?

Written by Carol Buckley, head the Tennessee sanctuary, it’s a simple story, but the last few pages offer an in-depth explanation of what her non-profit does for retired elephants that offers an added level to the story of compassion for nature.

Pre-order the book from Amazon; it’s set to hit shelves on Sept. 8. In the meantime, check out Tarra & Bella’s antics over at The Elephant Sanctuary site. Make sure to get the kids in the room for the elephant cam!

And if you’re so inspired – check out our recent interview with the mom whose family took their kids on a trek to 52 Zoos in 52 Weeks.

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