"It was a Growl. I used to-- my Mother-Dog used to tell me stories about the Earth-Dog and the Growls she sent. I think the monster was a Big Growl..."
Lucky to Sweet in The Empty City, page 13

Growl is the dog term for earthquakes [1]caused by the Earth-Dog. It is the main underlying theme of the Original Arc.


In the Original Series

The Empty City

In the Prologue, four pups, Yap, Squeak, Yip, and Yowl, are listening to their Mother-Dog recite the legend of the Earth-Dog and Lightning (The Storm of Dogs), where she mentions the Big Growl. According to the story, Lightning was the swiftest of the dog warriors, earning him protection from the Sky-Dogs. Earth-Dog becomes jealous and believes Lightning has lived too long. She creates a plan to take Lightning's life force. However, Lightning is too fast and always out sped the Earth-Dog's Growls.
In the Storm of Dogs, Earth-Dog sets a trap for Lightning in the sea of chaos and warring dogs. As Lightning tries to escape the Storm of Dogs, the Earth-Dog sent a Big Growl to open the ground in front of him in effort to claim his body at last.
However, the Sky-Dogs favored Lightning and spare his life, sending him high above the earth and into the sky where he know resides. To this day, he taunts the Earth-Dog during lightning strikes, knowing she will never claim him despite her slow growls (thunder).
In the beginning of Chapter One, the Big Growl strikes and Lucky is freed from the Trap House. He injures his paw in the process and barely escapes with Sweet. The other dogs in the Trap House are presumed to died.
Throughout the book, the dogs seek the ideal shelter from anymore of the Earth-Dog's future Big Growl.

A Hidden Enemy

A Growl does occur in this book, mentioned several times through the run of the story.
Lucky comes across a poisoned river with his Leashed Pack. He wonders if they can ever escape the Big Growl taint of death. Later on, during a skirmish with the Wild Pack, a Growl rumbles through the valley.
The shuddering earth split, a wound tearing itself down the center of the alley.
A gigantic tree looming over Lucky begins to fall. He leaps to safety only to find the tree falling straight for him. He rolls, seeking shelter under a rocky overhang.
Later on, the dogs discuss how they are not safe from the Big Growl's effects even in a presumably safe valley.

Darkness Falls

The Growl does not occur in this book, however it is mentioned as the cause of many happenings. On Page 16, Mickey comments how "The Big Growl changed all the rules." in his attack against the hierarchy pack system to which Alpha corrects him on how it's all the more necessary.
On page 58, Lucky insists that the changed world is result of the Big Growl after Alpha accuses him of causing a black cloud to appear as an omen as reasoning to exile him.
The Big Growl mostly comes into conversation as the cause of a new different world.

The Broken Path

Coming Soon

The Endless Lake

Coming Soon

Storm of Dogs

One Growl occurs in the book, and the Big Growl is referred to many times. Often as a mark in time of a world they used to know and the new world after the Growl.
Lucky is continuing to have visions of the Big Growl and the Trap House. Although this time he had it so many times that he has an awareness in his dreams, knowing he will escape. However, in one of his more different dreams, he almost does not escape. This frightens him, but he's reassured to find he still survived in the dream with Sweet.
Lucky remembers how long ago the Big Growl was. It almost seemed ages. After waking up early from his dream, the sheltie-retriever mix looks at his sleeping pack-mates. He almost thinks a twitching Storm is thinking of the Big Growl, but remembers she was too young to remember. He sees Sunshine, and can't believe how far they made since the Big Growl. Most of the Big Growl in the book is on reflection in the past and how the Big Growl changed their lives.
As a storm begins to loom, the dogs sense that the growl is coming. However, the Leashed Dogs express concern for the longpaws inspecting the nearby town by the beach, where they will most certainly be washed away by the waves. The pack divides, the Leashed Dogs leaving to warn the longpaws. They succeed in frightening and warning the longpaws, although one longpaw has fallen in a hole and cannot get out. Mickey and the others(Lucky included) retrieve a plank and lean it into the hole to pull the stranded longpaw out. The longpaw thanks Mickey as he licks the longpaw back into focus to flee into the helicopter.
The longpaw leaves, but not before they offer Mickey refuge onto the helicopter. Mickey refuses the offer, finally choosing his true ties between Leashed Dog and Wild Dog.
A big Growl strikes and the dogs flee from the ocean as it rears up and destroys parts of the cliff. Trees begin to collapse.

In the Novellas Arc

Sweet's Journey

Coming Soon

References and Citations

  1. Revealed on Gillian's Facebook