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Fabulous Tail-Wagging Reads to Get Ready for National Dog Day

Posted on August 11, 2021 at 6:00 am

Happy National Dog Day, illustrated pups

By Rachel Edmondson

During the pandemic proved to be a good time to finally add a four-legged member to our family. While we were not up for the challenge of a puppy, we found an 8-year-old dog that needed a new home, and he has been a great addition.

As with many dogs that are adopted or rehomed, we don’t know his actual birthday, but what better day to celebrate our furry family member than National Dog Day on August 26?

These days, there are many ways to celebrate your favorite pooch. Some people have doggy birthday parties, there are dress-up clothes for dogs, you can head to a dog park, buy a new treat or toy—the options are almost endless.

My kids can hardly wait to let our dog have his first taste of doggy ice cream. To accomplish this, we’ll have to bring it to him instead of enjoying it at the ice cream parlor because our doggy hates riding in the car!

As a children’s librarian, I think reading books is a fabulous way to celebrate a canine family member. There’s no shortage of kids’ books featuring dogs, so narrowing this list down was no easy task!

From silly to touching, these are a few of my favorite picture books about man’s (kid’s) best friend. I hope you read a few to celebrate dogs and get ready for National Dog Day!

A Dog Named Doug, by Karma Wilson

This silly story is sure to get kids laughing. Use the book as a starting point to play around with alliteration and rhyming words with your child—both are great for building early literacy skills.

Bark George, by Jules Feiffer

This is one of my all-time favorites to read in storytimes. When George’s mom tells him to bark, he makes all sorts of different animal sounds. His mom takes him to the vet who is determined to figure out what has gone wrong with the young pup.

Can I Be Your Dog? by Troy Cummings

Kids will be rooting for Arfy as he tries to find a forever home. This story is creatively told as Arfy sends letters to potential homes.

Floaty, by John Himmelman

Kids will love the humor of a floating dog, and adults will be charmed by this story about a dog’s ability to bring out the best in us.

Gaston, by Kelly DiPucchio

Gaston is a proper bulldog raised in a family of poodles. Antoinette is a feisty poodle being raised by bulldogs. After a chance encounter in the park, it becomes obvious that there has been a mix-up. This story about what makes family is both sweet and comical. 

Maggi and Milo, by Juli Brenning

I already loved this book about a spunky, frog-hunting girl and her dog, but now that we have a Border Collie in our family, I love it even more!

Mogie: The Heart of the House, by Kathi Appelt

When a little boy gets sick, Mogie is there to help him get better. This is a sweet story based on a dog who helps kids living in a Ronald McDonald House.

Nipper and the Lunchbox, by Lucy Dillamore

When Nipper’s owner forgets his lunch box, Nipper is determined to bring it to him. Adventure ensues, and Nipper ends up helping his owner in more ways than one.

Puppy Pool Party! An Underwater Dogs Adventure, by Seth Casteel

Since this post is all about celebrating dogs, I couldn’t resist adding this book about puppies having a pool party. The pictures of real dogs underwater are adorable and are guaranteed to make you smile.

Rescue & Jessica: A Life-Changing Friendship, by Jessica Kensky and Patrick Downes

Rescue longs to prove himself as a service dog. Jessica is figuring out what life looks like as an amputee. Together, they find hope and friendship.

The Stray Dog, by Marc Simont

When two kids find a stray dog in the park, the whole family can’t stop thinking about him. It doesn’t take long for the family to realize that the stray dog belongs with them.

The Story of Diva and Flea, by Mo Willems and Tony DiTerlizzi

This book is technically a chapter book but with lots of adorable pictures. This sweet story about a dog and cat who become friends works great if you are looking for a short chapter book to read aloud to younger kids.

Rachel Edmondson

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