Little Kids’ Book Club #5:”What Pet Should I Get?”

After being tucked away in a box for over 50 years, Dr. Seuss’s children’s book manuscript, What Pet Should I Get ?, has been uncovered and published. It may be an old story, yet still the pet question is as contemporary today as it was back in circa 1958-62, when Dr Seuss penned this narrative.


In Little Kids’ Book Club #5, we’re taking a closer look at creative thinking and collaborative problem solving. We also hope our post helps you navigate your next trip to the pet store. The best of luck to those of you who prefer the ease of caring for fish over four legged friends.

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Little Kids' Book Club #5: "What Pet Should I Get?"

Find this book in your SCHOOL or LIBRARY or order online here!

Read and Explore

Ask your child:

-Where else can you get a pet? (the pound or shelter)

-What is the sister’s name in this book? (Kay)

-Why don’t we know what the brother’s name is? (The book is written from the brother’s perspective, or “first person.” In the story the brother says; I went to the pet shop. I went there with Kay.)

-What is “pup” short for? (puppy)

-The children’s mother told them “to be back by noon.” What time is noon? (12)

-What is plural for:  dog (dogs) – cat(cats) – bird (birds) – fish (fish)

-What is the difference between taking care of a dog and a fish? (Example: You can leave a fish alone overnight, but you can’t leave a dog.)

-What kind of pet do you think Kay and her brother brought home in the basket? Send us a drawing of what you think it looks like and we may even publish your art in an upcoming post!

Pet Check List:  

-How much space does your pet need?

-Is anyone in the house allergic to fur?

-How much outside time does your pet need?

-Will someone be home at the right times to take your pet outside and feed it?

-If you rent, are pets allowed?

-If your pet is caged, how often does the cage need to be cleaned out and to what extent?

Fun Facts:

Small pets that live in cages are known to escape and are clever at hiding.

Hamsters are on a different schedule than children, sleeping during the day and active at night.

Rabbits can be trained to use a litter box.

-All of Dr. Seuss’s books were illustrated by hand using writing instruments and on paper compared to creating images with text using a computer program.

Find (left) Dr. Seuss's final book "What Pet Should I Get?" and Cathi Bosco's "Be The Kite."

Find (left) Dr. Seuss’s final book “What Pet Should I Get?” and Cathi Bosco’s “Be The Kite.”

-Dr. Seuss’s real name was Theodor Seuss Geisel. He was called “Ted”.

-Dr. Seuss revised his books over and over again, just like students do when they proofread their school  work.

-Dr Seuss ( March 2, 1904 – September 24, 1991) loved animals and had dogs throughout his life.

-Twelve years after Dr. Seuss died, his wife Audrey and friend and secretary Claudia Prescott, found the manuscript for What Pet Should I Get? in a box. Those who knew Dr. Seuss and his work, believe his manuscript was created sometime between 1958 and 1962.

A special thank you to Kevin and Bella for sharing your artistic drawings inspired by the Jerry Pallotta and Rob Bolster book, Going Lobstering, featured in Little Kids’ Book Club #3.




Send us a picture of what kind of pet you think Kay and her brother are carrying home in the basket. You can even make up a new kind of pet, just like Dr. Seuss invented a “Yent” in a tent.

Caryl Frankenberger, Ed. M. & Julie Janson