Pick of the Litter

Pick of the Litter isn’t all roly-polies and snuggles and yips: The star dogs of the film work their tails off as they are trained to become service animals, and their journey is emotional, tense, inspiring. (And yes, cute as hell.) The film starts with a fresh litter of squeaky baby Labrador retriever woofers, called the “P litter” because they all get P names: Poppet, Patriot, Potomac, Primrose, and the everyman, Phil. We follow the five Ps through their highly regimented early lives that start at a breeding center, then move on to puppy raisers, to an academy, and, finally, at close to two years old, into the hands of a person who needs them. And because the squishy geniuses change hands so many times on their path to work, the film contains many, many minutes of people saying very emotional goodbyes to dogs or hellos to dogs. If you’ve ever done one of those things, you’re going to cry. by Elinor Jones
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Dana Nachman, Don Hardy