If your kids are anything like mine, they love, love, love dogs! It's not an accident that there are so many great children's books about dogs. They're sweet and playful and cuddly, and these picture books capture that perfectly. Your kids will love them!
This post contains Amazon affiliate links.
Otis and the Puppy by Loren Long
Otis is one of our favorite characters, and we are lucky enough to own all of his books! This one is probably our favorite! Otis the tractor befriends a little puppy and then, overcoming his own fears, helps to find him one night when the puppy is lost. I'm not ashamed to admit that I tear up occasionally when I read this! It's a gem.
How Rocket Learned to Read by Tad Hill
How Rocket Learned to Read is a perfect book for a preschooler or kindergartner who is right on the verge of learning to read. Rocket the dog takes reading lessons from a little bird. He learns that all words are made one letter at a time, all sentences are made one word at a time, and all stories are made one sentence at a time. The illustrations are bright and cheerful. There are a couple of other books in the series, as well. The author and illustrator, Tad Hills, has another successful series for younger children, the Duck and Goose books.
Little Dog Lost by Monica Carnesi
This little story provides a nice simple geography lesson in addition to a sweet tale. A little puppy is trapped, floating on a chunk of ice in the Baltic Sea. He is eventually rescued by a research ship and gets to live on board. We always pull out a map and find the location when we read it. The color scheme is full of whites, blues, and grays, and is quite soothing. Little Dog Lost is a good book for older toddlers, preschoolers, and elementary aged children.
Curious George and the Puppies by H.A. Rey
While visiting the animal shelter, George accidentally lets loose a whole gaggle of puppies. After he and his friends have rounded them all back up, George ends up taking one home. The story in Curious George and the Puppies is very simple, and would be a good way to introduce a dialogue about animal shelters to your children. The Curious George books are suitable for toddlers, preschoolers, and young elementary aged children.
Ladybug Girl and Bingo by David Soman and Jacky Davis
The lesson in Ladybug Girl and Bingo is about responsibility. Little Lulu is on a camping trip with her family and accidentally lets her beloved dog, Bingo, run away. After a (very short) moment of panic, she finds him and all is well. This is one of our favorite series; Lulu is a wonderful character for young girls to get to know. Ladybug Girl and Bingo is a great book for older toddlers, preschoolers, and young elementary aged children.
Go, Dog. Go! by P.D. Eastman
Go, Dog. Go! is a fantastic early reader or great 'concept' book for young toddlers. The text is simple, and deals with colors, positional words, and other basic adjectives. It's a classic!
Clifford Collection by Norman Bridwell
Everybody knows and loves Clifford, the big red dog! My girls think these stories are hilarious, and they love this collection of 6 stories. These stories are great for toddlers, preschoolers, and elementary aged children.
Lady and the Tramp (Little Golden Book) by Teddy Slater
I'm not really a huge fan of these books adapted from Disney movies, but my girls both love this book so it gets a place in my list. There are several scary parts in this book that you may want to skip or gloss over if you are reading this to a young child. It is probably better suited for older preschoolers and elementary aged children who have seen the movie.
Where's Spot? by Eric Hill
We have three copies of this book, and they are all well-worn and loved. Where's Spot is a lift the flap book for babies and toddlers. The little puppy Spot disappears and his mother searches for him in different places. Your child lifts the flaps to try to find him, but instead finds other silly animals. My youngest said her first word, "no" (responding to, "Is Spot in the clock?") while reading this book so it has a soft spot in my heart! Supervise your child carefully while reading this book, though-- I've had to tape back on LOTS of the flaps!
Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion
Harry is a white dog with black spots. Until, that is, he gets very dirty and then looks like a black dog with white spots. Harry goes to a lot of trouble trying to convince his owners that he is their pet, but eventually he ends up having to give himself a good scrubbing. This is another great doggy story that your toddler, preschooler, or elementary aged child will love.
Doggies by Sandra Boynton
This book is so funny! Boynton has made a counting book, with each page featuring a different number of dogs. In addition, each dog makes a different sound (bark, yip, bow-wow), and we always giggle as we go through the many dogs. It is one of Boynton's best! Doggies is suitable for babies, toddlers, and young preschoolers.
Good Dog, Carl by Alexandra Day
Boy, there are a lot of great books in this list, huh? Good Dog, Carl is another one! This is a (mostly) wordless picture book about a dog who is left to babysit the baby. Crazy antics ensue. Carl is, indeed, a good dog. Your children of all ages will love this book and find it hilarious.
If You Give a Dog a Donut by Laura Numeroff
Laura Numeroff delivers again! This far-fetched tale of cause and effect is just as silly as all the others in this series! The bright and detailed illustrations help to make this book charming and one that your kids will want you to read again and a gain. We love this whole series (although the best one is the original, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie).
The Poky Little Puppy (Little Golden Book) by Jeanette Sebring Lowrey
Oh, the Poky Little Puppy! This is a classic story that all children should have the pleasure of knowing (if for no other reason than knowing the cultural reference). The illustrations are charmingly vintage, and will remind you of a simpler time!
Biscuit Storybook Collection by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
The stories about Biscuit the dog are so sweet and gentle, and this collection gives you 10 at once! The stories are suitable for older babies, toddlers, and preschoolers. The Biscuit books are also great for children who are starting to read on their own and are anxious for 'real' books instead of easy readers (because they're still pretty easy). I think this collection would also make a great gift for a 1-year-old or 2-year-old birthday.
Charlie the Ranch Dog by Ree Drummond
We don't have cable television, so my knowledge of the Pioneer Woman is limited to the beautiful cookbooks that I thumb through at my parents' house. Charlie is Ree Drummond's real life dog, and this series of books about him is TOO CUTE! Your children will learn a little bit about life on a ranch, and will also fall in love with ole' Charlie while they're at it. If your kids have seen you watching the Pioneer Woman on TV, they'll love that she wrote these books for them!
You can find lots more fun activities for kids about dogs (and cats) on the Cutting Tiny Bites Pinterest board below.