Parents need to know that the heroine's mother is killed (off screen) in a bad car accident in which the girl is a passenger. The girl becomes withdrawn and is sent to live with an apparently alcoholic grandfather because she can no longer stand her well-meaning, kind father. The movie confronts the idea of animal euthanasia repeatedly, with subplots of tainted animal feed, puppies consigned to drowning due to bad bloodlines, and a surreptitious no-kill animal shelter. A child releases all the dogs in a shelter, and as a consequence one is hit by a car while another inflicts a bite on a human.
- Families can talk about the message of this movie. Is it pro-animal rights or anti? What are the different ways to value a domestic pet vs. a farm animal? If you haven't read "To Kill A Mockingbird" by Harper Lee, this movie's many references to the story gives you a good reason to open it.