Thursday, July 30, 2015

Book Review: Louie the Labrador (dog, any child, educational)

A Kid’s Guide to Louie the Labrador, 2nd in the series* A Puppy’s New Home, by AJ Richards, illustrated by Rayah Jaymes (CreateSpace, 42 pages, 2014, $11.69, ages 2-12 with 3rd grade reading ability – great for an older child to read to a younger sibling)

Cute illustrations of Louie the black lab are sure to bring black labs back into popularity, but the page that hooked me was page 4 with space for your child’s name plus her dog’s name.

Louie the Labrador is the second in a series of children’s interactive books that teach school lessons in a fun way as well as how to take good care of a puppy. Your child will want each book in the series as the family decides which dog to get.

Interactive, Yes!

Several pages tell us all about labs and then ask the reader a question so your child can play her part in the book, too. Louie was born in Canada but now lives in the US. When you turn the page to a map of the States, Louie asks if the reader can find her own home on this map page.

Children are often advised to pick up their toys and clothes, to puppy-proof their house, but what does that mean to a child? Louie the Lab shows the things that need to be picked up and the foods that are good for both dogs and kids, as well as the foods that are not good for dogs. Selections are circled to make the points more child-memorable.

Painless Lessons are Fun

Truly an interactive book, Louie’s story begins with geography but your child will not realize how much she is learning and you will not be aware of the lessons either!  How to greet a dog, how to pet a dog, and other puppy lessons are presented in story-like ways to keep your child’s interest while implanting in her mind the correct way to behave around dogs. For example, one lesson in dog language: Louie wags his tail when he is happy and asks the reader what she does when she is happy.

Lessons in counting, geography, even safety and health, as well as playing with a dog outside which is “. . . more fun than playing inside alone on the computer,” says Louie. Louie’s book also ends with three pages of glossary words and a page of Internet references. Most unique is the feeding chart that tells how much to feed to your new puppy and how often (however, ask your veterinarian because kibbles differ from brand to brand in how much to feed).

This series gives a great, fun foundation in how to live with a dog (and sneaks in other entertaining lessons).  Your child will want to read them all!

*Other books in the series include Bella the Bichon Frise, Max the Golden Retriever, Lady the Yorkshire Terrier, Princess the Bulldog, and more. You can even purchase a personalized copy of one of these for your child with your dog’s name.

(Caveat: This book was sent to me to review.)

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