Did you know April is School Library Month? With unexpected school closures, parents, librarians, and educators may be looking for quality humane-themed e-books to share with children at home. Here are six animal-themed e-books for your at-home, virtual library!

1. Rescue and Jessica: A Life-Changing Friendship

by Jessica Kensky and Patrick Downes, illustrated by Scott Magoon
Published by Candlewick Press
Recommended for ages 5+
Download on Amazon or find a library e-book copy using Google Books

Rescue thought he’d grow up to be a Seeing Eye dog — it’s the family business, after all. When he gets the news that he’s better suited to being a service dog, he’s worried that he’s not up to the task. Then he meets Jessica, a girl whose life is turning out differently than the way she’d imagined it, too. Now Jessica needs Rescue by her side to help her accomplish everyday tasks. And it turns out that Rescue can help Jessica see after all: a way forward, together, one step at a time.

2. Nobody’s Cats: How One Little Black Kitty Came in from the Cold

by Valerie Ingram and Alistair Schroff, illustrated by Hadley Hutton
Published by Lakes Animal Friendship Society
Recommended for ages 6+
Download on Amazon or find a library e-book copy using Google Books

After stopping some kids from throwing rocks at a group of cats, a boy finds a little black kitty starving and shivering in the snow. He wants to save the poor little black kitty but doesn’t know how! With the help of a friendly volunteer, he learns all about community cats. The neighbors call them “Nobody’s cats”, but what will they think when the boy springs into action and becomes a superhero to help the little black kitty and the rest of the community cats?

3. The Forgotten Rabbit

by Nancy Furstinger, illustrated by Nancy Lane
Published by The Gryphon Press
Recommended for ages 3+
Download on Amazon or find a library e-book copy using Google Books

A baby rabbit is chosen as an Easter present, but is soon forgotten by the family’s children as they pursue other activities. Her cage is moved outside, and she is rarely tended. As winter comes, she grows weak with hunger and curls into herself to disappear. Then, one night a girl called Rosalita takes her out of her cage, telling her that she has a new home, one in which she will never again be forgotten. Enjoying love, care, and a new name—Bella—she finds happiness in agility lessons. Bella wins first prize in a rabbit agility contest—jumping with joy into the always-loving arms of Rosalita.

4. Hens for Friends

by Sandy De Lisle, illustrated by Amelia Hansen
Published by The Gryphon Press
Recommended for ages 3-7
Download on Amazon or find a library e-book copy using Google Books

Hens are smart, savvy, and like to cuddle, as Aaron describes in this picture book about his relationship with his best friend, a Rhode Island Red hen he names Margaret. Aaron tells the story of how his family interacts with their six adopted hens, not just in chores like keeping the chicken coop clean, but playing with, petting the hens, and tucking them in at night. When their mother bakes a birthday cake for his brother, Aaron makes sure that the eggs come from Margaret.

5. The Restricted Adventures of Raja

by Nicole Forsyth, illustrated by Bryan Huff
Developed by Sticky Brain Studios
Recommended for ages 7+
Download on Apple or Android tablets or phones. Books 1 and 2 are free!

It’s the year 2050; the Earth has mysteriously become a dreadful, unkind place full of angry, lonely people and animals wandering the streets with no homes. Raja, a warrior from another world, has been sent on a mission…but his fate takes a sudden turn when he becomes compelled to help a lonely Earth boy, AJ. The only problem? Once Raja arrives on Earth, he discovers that he’s been transformed from a brave warrior into a domestic – and fearful – Earth cat!

6. Thinker My Puppy Poet and Me

Thinker: My Puppy Poet and Meby Eloise Greenfield and Ehsan Abdollahi
Published by Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Recommended for ages 4-8
Download on Amazon, Apple Books, or Google Play Books

Thinker isn’t an average puppy – he’s a poet. So is his owner, Jace. Together, they turn the world around them into a verse. There’s just one problem: Thinker has to keep quiet in public and he can’t go to school with Jace. That is, until Pet’s Day. But when Thinker is allowed into the classroom at last, he finds it hard to keep his true identity a secret.


For more animal-themed, at-home learning resources, visit RedRover’s Empathy Resources for At-Home Learning.