Little Lions, Bull Baiter & Hunting Hounds by Jeff Crosby and Shelley Ann Jackson

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Stars: ****

Subtitle: A History of Dog Breeds

I received this book for review from Tundra Books. I’m also counting it towards the Non-Fiction Five, What an Animal challenge and What’s in a Name Challenge (animal).

Anyone who really knows me, knows I love dogs. So when I saw this book I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to review it. I already know a bit about the history of some common dog breeds but this book is written for children so I decided to check it out.

The book divides the approximately 42 breeds it talks about into 4 categories: Hunting Breeds, Herding Breeds, Working Breeds and Companion Breeds. Why approximately? Some pages cover a few similar breeds together in one page. The 43rd history is about mixed-breeds. How can you have a history of mixed-breeds you ask? Well this paragraph just explains how mixed-breeds came along and how they are often healthier as they aren’t as prone to breed specific diseases.

Most breeds are talked about on one page, some take up two but mostly that’s because of large illustrations. Some of the pages have a large illustration of the breed and then text below while other pages have a full page illustration with the text over top of it. Each breed also has a map to show what part of the world they originally came from and a small tidbit of information in addition to the main paragraph.

The illustrations are amazing! They are about as close as you could get a drawing to look like a real dog. They are life like and coudl almost be mistaken for a photograph.

Want a full list of the breeds covered? In order of appearance:
Afhan Hound, Borzoi, Greyhound, Irish Wolfhoud, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Bloodhound, Dachshund, Basenji, Akita, English Setter, Vizsla, English Cocker Spaniel, Poodle, Terriers of Scotland (Dandie Dinmont Terrier, Cairn Terrier, Skye Terrier, West Highland White Terrier and Scottish Terrier), Parson Jack Russell Terrier, Canaan Dog, Puli, Komondor, Border Collie, Bearded Collie, Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Australian Cattle Dog, Samoyed, Alaskan Malamute, Chow Chow, Sennenhunds, Saint Bernard, Dalmation, Doberman Pinscher, Neopolitan Mastiff, English Bulldog, Boxer, Portuguese Water Dog, Newfoundland, Labrador Retriever, Chichuahua, Shih Tzu, Peruvian Inca Orchid, Bichon Frise, Papillon, Pug and Boston Terrier. Similar breeds or variations of breeds are also mentioned very briefly. For example in the paragraph on Pemproke Welsh Corgis, the Cardigan Welsh Corgi is mentioned, the other kinds of poodles are mentioned etc….

This is a really good introduction book to the history of the breeds. It’s listed as all ages but I’d say at least 8, possibly older before they’d be able to read most of it.

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.