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About a year ago, I interviewed Michael W. Fox, renowned author, animal behaviorist and veterinarian.

Fox, a prolific writer, talked in his 2007 book, Dog Body, Dog Mind, about dogs and their connection to us.

His study of dogs taught him something about humans, he said: "I've come to understand what it means to be wild, and how we have changed dogs in the process of domestication. I like the emerging idea that dogs and wolves really helped us become human. Before, we were aggressive, carnivorous, killer apes."

Looking into the eyes of a dog rescued from a puppy mill (see cover story) makes me realize that not all humans have evolved.

That's something Theresa Strader figured out after her first trip to a mill in Missouri. There and on subsequent trips, she found hundreds, thousands of dogs our closest companions in the animal world, creatures capable of insight, reasoning and emotion being raised as a cash crop.

And now, through her Mill Dog Rescue Network, she's rescued more than 650 dogs.

"If you see what I have seen, you will be changed forever," Strader told me. "I was."

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