Two of the best reasons to have pets are:
1) They make you laugh.
2) They have hidden talents (that usually make you laugh).
For example: My dog Malcolm. Malcolm learns a new trick every summer. In the past, he has learned how to pirouette, sit up like a troll, and do the hokey-pokey (sort of). He is currently in the midst of mastering how to “Rambo” (aka crawl across the kitchen floor towards a piece of kibble. Don’t ask… I am not the trick-chooser).
I find that many of the most memorable cartoony animals in picture books are also charming because they have talent, and they crack us up. Here are some of my favs (Canadians first…):
Scaredy Squirrel – Melanie Watt (Talent: scaredyness)
Grumpy Bird – Jeremy Tankard (Talent: grumpiness)
New Boots for Hudson – Marc Tetro (Talent: fashion sense, being Canadian)
Lost and Found – Oliver Jeffers (Talent: getting lost and being found)
Officer Buckle and Gloria – Peggy Rathmann (Talent: safety-tips and acrobatics)
Lottie’s New Beach Towel – Petra Mathers (Talent: beach towel use)
Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus – Mo Willems (Talent: driving, whining)
Diary of a Wombat – Jackie French (Talent: sleeping, eating carrots)
Where Willy Went – Nicholas Allan (Talent: swimming)
The True Story of Stellina – Matteo Pericoli (Talent: balancing on the ends of pencils)
Wolves – Emily Gravett (Talent: choosing library books)
And the Cutest Cartooniest Cover Awards go to: