Arthur's New Puppy: 03/17/10
I used to watch the Arthur cartoons on PBS when I was babysitting the neighbors. This was long before I had kids of my own. Neither of my two seem to like the Arthur series much; I like it more than they do. So it surprised me when Harriet decided to check out Arthur's New Puppy by Marc Brown.
If watched any of the episodes or read any of the books, you know that Arthur has a dog named Pal. Arthur's New Puppy tries to tell the story of how Pal came to be Arthur's puppy. It also tries to teach children responsibility with pets.
The book ended up doing none of the above for Sean, Harriet and me. Sean was horrified at how poorly they treated puppy Pal when he was clearly missing his mother and scared about his new home. He and I both didn't like how Arthur's parents didn't take an measures to teach Arthur how to care for Pal but were quick to yell at him when the puppy did typical puppy things. Harriet just found the book boring and didn't want me to finish reading it.
For a much better puppy back story book: Clifford the Small Red Puppy by Norman Bridwell.
Comment #1: Thursday, March, 18, 2010 at 01:43:41
In terms of puppies specifically, Dick King-Smith's "Puppy Love" has been one of my favorites for years. For just casual "living with animals" reading, "Our Animal Friends at Maple Hill Farm, by Jan and Martin Provenson, is one of my favorite books *ever*.
Neither is "how to take care of a pet," they're just loving and fabulous.
Comment #2: Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 00:01:14
Thank you for the recommendations. I've read a few of King-Smith's books but not Puppy Love. My kids don't really need how-to books as they've grown up around cats and dogs. I still don't know why they picked this one!