Rescued by Ruby Parent Guide
With its strong positive messages, this heartwarming film ticks all the boxes for wholesome family entertainment.
Parent Movie Review
Daniel O’Neil (Grant Gustin) is driven by a compelling dream: he wants to be a K9 officer. He’s already applied to the training program seven times and this year is his last shot. Officers who work with dogs must start their training before the age of 30 and Daniel is already 29 years old.
There are two major obstacles in Daniel’s way. First, the officer in charge, Matt Zarella (Scott Wolf), thinks Officer O’Neil is too jumpy for a job that requires a calm, cool head. Second, the department can’t afford to buy another $10,000 police dog. Daniel hasn’t overcome both hyperactivity and dyslexia for nothing. A problem solver determined to prove that he has the right stuff, Daniel heads for the local shelter to find a dog he can train on his own. And there he meets Ruby.
Daniel doesn’t know it, but Ruby is under a death sentence. Deemed unadoptable thanks to her energetic behavior and constant disobedience, Ruby has just been returned to the shelter by her seventh adoptive owner. Volunteer Pat Inman (Camille Sullivan) has begged that Ruby not be euthanized, but the clock runs out that night. Daniel’s arrival at the shelter gives both of them a fresh start…but it’s not going to be easy.
With a sweet story, appealing characters, and clean content, Rescued by Ruby ticks all the boxes for wholesome family entertainment. The movie features an appealing protagonist – Dan is dedicated to his job, devoted to his wife (Kaylah Zander) and son, and helpful to members of his community. His efforts to train Ruby demonstrate the virtues of perseverance, commitment, and honest self-assessment. The film is also replete with further positive messages about community service, marital unity, and collegial support. There are no harmful messages for parents to worry about in this show and precious little negative content either. Aside from a handful of terms of deity in the film, there are images of an injured child and mention of a murder victim, but none of the content is gruesome or gratuitous.
This production isn’t perfect – it has a made-for-tv feel – but it succeeds in telling a true story with sincerity and heart. Ruby is played by an actor dog named Bear, who is utterly irresistible. I’m not an animal person but I couldn’t resist her shaggy, doggy charm. Animal lovers of any age will be drawn to this adorable dog and will root for her and her human companion. The movie exudes so much goodwill that even the plot twist at the end is more emotional than annoying. Were this a fictional story, I would be ranting at the screenwriters for being manipulative, but since this is based on true events, all I can do is repeat the old adage that “truth is stranger than fiction”. Thankfully, it also makes for an uplifting family film.Directed by Katt Shea. Starring Grant Gustin, Kaylah Zander, Scott Wolf, Camille Sullivan. Running time: 90 minutes. Theatrical release March 17, 2022. Updated January 10, 2024
Watch the trailer for Rescued by Ruby
Rescued by Ruby
Rating & Content Info
Why is Rescued by Ruby rated TV-G? Rescued by Ruby is rated TV-G by the MPAA
Violence: There’s talk of euthanizing a dog. An injured boy is seen with blood on his face. There’s mention of the body of a murder victim.
Sexual Content: A woman tells her husband she’s pregnant. A husband and wife kiss each other on a couple of occasions.
Profanity: There are four terms of deity in the script.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Police officers find drugs jettisoned by a criminal.
Other Rear view of man urinating outdoors.
Page last updated January 10, 2024
Rescued by Ruby Parents' Guide
What lessons does Daniel learn about himself while working with Ruby? What advantages do you think occurred from Daniel training Ruby at home instead of in the program? What benefits did Daniel and Ruby reap?
What do you think of the plot twist at the end of the movie? For the true story, check out these links:
The Providence Journal: Netflix’s new film features RI and a hero K-9 rescued from a shelter. How much is true?
Related home video titles:
Dogs are also trained to serve in the military and two films address the affects on these animals. Megan Leavey tells the true story of a Marine who tries to be reunited with her dog after their mission ends. Dog is a fictional story about an Army Ranger who agrees to transport a traumatized K9 dog to the funeral of her handler.
Rigorous training is part of life for animals raised as guide dogs for the blind. Pick of the Litter is a heartwarming, family-friendly documentary about how these animals are selected and trained.