Children’s books about zoo animals

Children’s books about zoo animals

My girls loved our trip to Edinburgh zoo a few weeks back. In fact, they just love animals so we have lots of books about various animals. Today I have 5 children’s books about zoo animals to share with you. Perfect to read before or after a trip to the zoo. Of course, they’re perfect even if you don’t have a zoo trip planned. Books marked with a * were sent to us for review. I have included links to the books on Amazon too. Please note these are affiliate links.

Don’t feed the bear, Kathleen Doherty, Chip Wass *

Bear loves it when campers leave him food to eat in the woods but one day the ranger puts a sign up that says “Don’t feed the bear”. Of course, bear is not happy about this as the ranger is eating all the yummy food that bear thinks should be his. So he decides to put up a sign of his own. It reads “Don’t feed the ranger”. My children love the word fight that continues as the bear and the ranger keep changing the signs to try and get food from the visitors. I love that this book has an ending that teaches children about kindness and sharing. The illustrations are bright, fun and cartoon like, perfect for children.

Buy now from Amazon.


But the bear came back, Tammi Sauer, Dan Taylor *

The illustrations in this book are really beautiful and I love the colours too. One day a bear knocks on a little boys door and when he politely tells him bears don’t belong in houses. The bear goes away but he keeps coming back and the boy keeps sending him away. Only one day the bear doesn’t come back and he starts to miss him. So he puts up some missing posters and sets out a bowl of berries and eventually the bear comes back. A beautifully illustrated tale of friendship.

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Monkey puzzle, Julia Donaldson, Axel Scheffler

This might be one of Julia Donaldson’s lesser known books but it is one of our favourites. We’ve read this book so much over the years that I know most of it off by heart. Monkey has lost his mum and a kind butterfly is trying to help him find her. The only problem is butterfly keeps misunderstanding his descriptions and showing him other animals that are definitely not his mum. Fortunately, monkey finally gets butterfly to understand that his mum looks just like him and they find his dad who takes him home to mum. We love the rhymes in this book and it teaches children about how caterpillars turn in to butterflies too. A really sweet and fun book to read with young children.

Buy now from Amazon.



Giraffes can’t dance, Giles Andreae, Guy Parker-Lees

Another great rhyming story that we read over and over again. The illustrations are Gerald is a tall giraffe who dreads the jungle dance as giraffes can’t dance or can they? Gerald is a very self-conscious giraffe but a cricket teaches him that “sometimes when you’re different you just need a different song”. Gerald listens to the sounds around him and starts to dance to his own rhythm. The others are all surprised and impressed by his dance.

Buy now from Amazon.

This zoo is not for you, Ross Collins

This is such a fun book that my 5 year old loves. It’s packed full of rhymes that just roll off the tongue and has plenty of humour too. As well as being a really fun read, it also teaches children about not being mean to others. Some pages have no text and the story is told through the pictures which is great for seeing how much of the story children are understanding. A platypus arrives at the zoo to deliver an invitation but the animals think he is there to apply for a place at the zoo and they put him through a rigorous interview and are quite unkind to him. Fortunately, at the end they see the error of their ways.

Buy now from Amazon.


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Disclosure: books marked with a * were sent to me free in exchange for a review. All words, photos and opinions are my own. I am a participant in the Amazon EU Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to If you purchase through these links, I receive a small commission for each purchase. It does not affect the price you pay.

Laura's Lovely Blog


  1. July 7, 2018 / 8:47 am

    What a great selection. We love any books with bears in

  2. July 7, 2018 / 10:57 am

    Ah, we used to love the Giraffes Can’t Dance book. Good old Gerald.

  3. July 7, 2018 / 12:31 pm

    Love monkey puzzle! The bear book looks great!

  4. July 7, 2018 / 2:10 pm

    Great post! I wish i would have come across this earlier. I just did zoo week for my nanny kids 🙂

  5. July 7, 2018 / 7:00 pm

    My youngest is obsessed with Monkey Puzzle at the moment!! We haven’t yet tried any of the others but look like great suggestions.

  6. July 28, 2018 / 10:37 am

    I love the look of Don’t Feed the Bear it looks like lots of fun! We are always fans of Monkey Puzzle in this house and I have read it more times than I can count 🙂 #KLTR

  7. July 31, 2018 / 5:36 am

    Monkey Puzzle is one of my favourite books by far. I love the story and have fond memories of reading it with Sylvia. Thanks for linking up to KLTR

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