The best laugh out loud children’s books about pets

Who am I?

I’m a semi-retired music teacher and grandmother of two. When my kids were little, we would devour books like they were delicious candy, reading our favourites over and over again. I still love reading out loud, using various inflections, accents, and voices for the different characters. I’ve read hundreds of children’s books and the ones I enjoy most have a great message, are fun to read out loud, and also make me laugh. And they must have beautiful, colourful illustrations! My first book is a spoken word piece from my WCMA-nominated CD, Too Much Work To Do. It’s been asking me to dream it into a book for years! 


I wrote...

Please Don't Go in the Dryer!

By Judy Lea, Anita Ho (illustrator),

Book cover of Please Don't Go in the Dryer!

What is my book about?

A young girl with an active imagination (shall we say “overactive”?) is worried about her very cute kitten who doesn’t listen and keeps getting into everything! With increasingly precarious (and comical) possible outcomes (stuck in the dryer, mistaken for socks, used as dental floss by the Sock Monster!), this is a highly entertaining spoken word piece with lots of repetition, and is perfect for early readers, ELL readers or anyone who loves to read out loud.

“Young readers (and their parents) will laugh out loud at this whimsical cautionary tale about a mischievous kitten and its overly imaginative owner. The delightful text and beautiful, hilarious illustrations will make this a “read it again!” favourite”.

The books I picked & why

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One Word from Sophia

By Jim Averbeck, Yasmeen Ismail (illustrator),

Book cover of One Word from Sophia

Why this book?

I loved this sweet, funny, feel-good book with its unusual, intelligent characters. Sophia is a very determined girl (with a wonderful Afro ponytail) who won’t stop pursuing her One True Desire—to have a giraffe! Her father (businessman), her mother (lawyer), her uncle (politician), and her grandmother (who is very strict), all have excellent reasons for saying no to all of her arguments, including the fact that she uses too many words. (Teaching her 3 new words along the way.) Despite compelling slideshows, graphs, pie charts, and foot rubs, she has no success, until…

The illustrations are delightful, colourful, and comical, bringing the characters to life, including the hard-won Giraffe. If you are a word lover like me, you will also love this book!

One Word from Sophia

By Jim Averbeck, Yasmeen Ismail (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked One Word from Sophia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sophia tries varied techniques to get the giraffe she wants more than anything in this playfully illustrated story about the nuances of negotiation.

Sophia has one true desire for her birthday. But she has Four Big Problems in the way: Mom, Dad, Uncle Conrad...and Grand-mama.

Will her presentations, proposals, and pie charts convince them otherwise?

Turns out, all it takes is one word.

Dream Dog

By Lou Berger, David J. Catrow (illustrator),

Book cover of Dream Dog

Why this book?

Harry really wants a dog! Alas, his dad’s nose is sensitive from working in a pepper factory; dogs make him sneeze! He gets Harry a chameleon and it’s ok; it changes colours, but doesn’t move much and is hard to see. So…Harry decides to dream a dog! The two have the best time together until one day… 

I really relate to this story because dogs make me sneeze too! I love Harry’s great imagination and the father’s sympathy for his son, going along with the existence of Waffle, the dream dog. The illustrations are whimsical, beautiful, and hilarious. I think you will be delighted with this book, maybe as much as me! 

PS. The author is a ten-time Emmy Award winner and former head writer for Sesame Street!

Dream Dog

By Lou Berger, David J. Catrow (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dream Dog as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Written by a ten-time Emmy Award winner and former head writer for Sesame Street, here's a story that will resonate with every dog-loving child out there. Harry wants wants wants a dog, and, instead of getting one, his parents try to placate him with a pet that's decidedly less interesting—a lizard. So Harry takes matters into his own hands and places his X-35 Infra-Rocket Imagination Helmet on his head, and soon something—with paws! a tail! a wet nose!—pops into the world. Sure, nobody else can see the dog named Waffle, but that doesn't matter to Harry. But what happens when…

Bad Dog

By Mike Boldt,

Book cover of Bad Dog

Why this book?

One of the best things about this book is the fabulous illustrations! Bold, bright, and very silly, they totally capture the essence of this very funny story about a little girl who desperately wants a dog. She is overjoyed with the ‘dog’ she gets for her birthday except, he won’t do anything dogs are supposed to do! He won’t come when he’s called, won’t go for walks, doesn’t like other dogs, etc. However, he is very good at climbing trees, (but won’t come down), likes to play in the fish water…doesn’t bark at the mailman, doesn’t have accidents on the floor… maybe that’s because this dog is actually a…cat

I definitely understand why this book is a five-time award winner!

Bad Dog

By Mike Boldt,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Bad Dog as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?



The differences between cats and dogs have never been funnier! In this hilarious new story from the illustrator of I Don't Want to Be a Frog, a little girl really, really wants a dog . . . but gets a cat instead!

"Look what I got for my birthday! A pet dog!" says a little girl holding a . . . cat? Rocky doesn't listen or obey like all the other dogs. (Because Rocky is a cat.) And Rocky hates her leash and doesn't seem to like other dogs. (Probably because Rocky is a cat.) And rather than play fetch,…

Children Make Terrible Pets

By Peter Brown,

Book cover of Children Make Terrible Pets

Why this book?

Lucy, the bear, is practicing her twirls in the forest when she notices she is being watched, by a boy who squeaks! Lucy thinks he is “the cutest thing in the world!” and begs her mother to let her keep him. Her mother tells her that “children make terrible pets!” but eventually relents. Lucy and Squeak do everything together but the boy is practically impossible to potty-train, ruins the furniture, makes terrible messes, and then…he disappears! When Lucy finally finds him, she realizes that some creatures make terrible pets. Then again, perhaps a…? 

Peter Brown’s colour drawings are cute and funny; this book definitely made me laugh out loud. What an interesting change of perspective about humans and pets! 

I liked the surprise ending too.

Children Make Terrible Pets

By Peter Brown,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Children Make Terrible Pets as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this fresh and funny picture book, Lucy, a young bear, discovers a lost boy in the woods and she thinks she's found the most adorable, cutest pet ever. She brings him home, and begs her mom to keep him, even though her mom tells her that 'children make terrible pets.' She names him Squeaker and the two go through a humorous sequence of events: playing, napping, litterbox training (okay, maybe that's not fun!) and all other sorts of shenanigans. But then Squeaker suddenly goes missing. Lucy is heartbroken and looks for him everywhere. Finally, she finds him back with…

Are You a Cheeseburger?

By Monica Arnaldo,

Book cover of Are You a Cheeseburger?

Why this book?

A heartwarming book with a hilarious premise. Grub, a raccoon, meets Seed (a seed) in the same garbage can one night. Grub, who’s been dreaming of finding one, asks Seed, “Are you a cheeseburger?” Seed is unsure and asks what a cheeseburger is. “Something very good and very special,” says Grub. Unsure, Seed replies, “We will just have to wait and see.” While they wait, Grub describes the 3 best cheeseburgers ever and Seed describes 3 wonderful worms. When Seed eventually sprouts, they celebrate: Grub plays banjo and Seed secretly wonders what will happen if she isn’t actually a cheeseburger. 

The illustrations of this book are simple and magical. Like me, you may find the ending to be “something very good and very special” too. 

Are You a Cheeseburger?

By Monica Arnaldo,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Are You a Cheeseburger? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Kids' Indie Next List pick! Laugh-out-loud humor and a tender friendship blossom in author-illustrator Monica Arnaldo's charming picture book about a lonely raccoon and a glowing seed, and the world's most important question: Can this seed grow cheeseburgers?

Grub is a lonely racoon. Rumbling in the trash. Looking for food.

Seed is, well, a seed! Patiently waiting in the trash. Hoping someone will plant it.

When the two finally meet, they realize they might be able to help each other! Grub has just one big question first: What will Seed grow? Could Seed grow Grub's favorite food, mouthwatering cheeseburgers?…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in dogs, bears, and raccoon?

6,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about dogs, bears, and raccoon.

Dogs Explore 265 books about dogs
Bears Explore 51 books about bears
Raccoon Explore 6 books about raccoon

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like This Is Your Brain on Stereotypes, Cecil the Pet Glacier, and The Pigeon Wants a Puppy! if you like this list.