Children's Bookshelf: Found Dogs

Dec 11, 2017

“Found Dogs” written and illustrated by Erica Sirotich is a counting book full of rhymes, colors, numbers and dogs. All fifty-five dogs are waiting at the pound to be adopted.

Young picture book beginners meet them in groups---first there is one dog waiting  and then on the next page there are two new dogs waiting followed by three new dogs and so forth. This visual correlation is perfect for little ones learning how to recognize and count from 1-10. Older siblings can even count the running number of all fifty-five dogs by the time there are ten new dogs gathered.

Then comes Adoption Day! A happy and cleverly detailed double page illustration shows many children, parents, grandparents, ballerinas and firemen lined up patiently in front of the City Shelter to select their found dog. The next double spread illustration shows a happy neighborhood of people and their found dogs looking out windows, standing in doorways and peering from porches. The houses and apartments and a fire station all have addresses which again go from 1 to 10 but not in that order and provide a visual “I spy” opportunity.

A special illustration shows a little girl in a wheelchair with her found dog on her lap giving her many welcome licks.

The rhymes skip along pleasantly. Quoting from the book as the new owners and their dogs leave the pound and the text counts backward from 10 to 1: “10 dogs, saying hello. 9 dogs, ready to go. 8 dogs, stealing kisses. 7 dogs, snuggling so.”

“Found Dogs” written and illustrated by Erica Sirotich is both a perfect counting book for 2-5 year olds and a book that suggests to the whole family that the dog pound is a wonderful place to get a lovable four-legged companion (Dial Books/ Penguin Random House, 2017). This is Sue Ann Martin for The Children’s Bookshelf.

Activities and Questions for FOUND DOGS (to be used with 2-5 year olds)

Do you have a dog? What is your dog’s name?  How did your dog get that name? When and where did you get your dog? Does your dog do any tricks? How does your dog make you feel? Is there a drawing of a dog in this book that looks something like your dog? Try drawing your own picture of your dog. Have Fun!

The picture of all the dogs in their newly-found homes is full of happy dogs and happy people. Look at that picture and see if you can find the address of each house, apartment building and firehouse. There are ten addresses numbered from 1-10 in this illustration but they are not in order. Count them forward.

Play an “I spy” game by turning to the picture of the City Shelter with the long line of people waiting to claim their found dog. Look at it closely and find the following: a bird, a fireman, a cat, a wheelchair, cactus, a man with a white beard, a ballerina, twins in stripped pants, a pineapple and a dog bone in someone’s pocket.