'Aidan the Hugging Golden Doodle' releasing book series for children

A suburban dog has traveled the world to comfort kids and military veterans. Now, he’s releasing his very own book series for children.

He’s known as "Aidan the Hugging Golden Doodle" — a large, white ball of fluff with a big heart.

"I took him for his first puppy class when he was eight weeks old and that's when the instructor told me this is a dog with a purpose," said Naperville resident Samantha Kandah, Aidan’s owner.

For nearly a decade, the Golden doodle has comforted children facing cancer at local hospitals.

"He would build a relationship with his patients. For example, when the kids are sick, when they go in for treatment, Aiden would be there waiting with them so they knew not to be so scared when they went in," said Kandah.


During the pandemic, Aidan turned a page, literally, and started reading to children virtually with a little help.

He visited schools in Chicago, Milwaukee, Los Angeles, New York and internationally. That’s when his owner knew he would be the perfect subject for a book himself, teaching children about caring for others.

"At the end of the day, after 12 years of doing this, Aidan was really focused on helping children, to be kind and learn compassion. That's his whole mission," said Kandah.

Aidan’s first book takes place in Chicago. You can find his books on www.AidanDoodle.com.

Aidan will be appearing at a book signing event in downtown Naperville on August 28 at the J. McLaughlin Store at 216 S. Main Street.