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Presidential Pets    by Julia Moberg & Jeff Albrecht Studios order for
Presidential Pets
by Julia Moberg
Order:  USA  Can
Charlesbridge, 2012 (2012)
* *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

This picture book features an overview of presidential pets with an accompanying full page cartoon of each critter. A rhyming verse introduces each set of animals. Presidential Stats accompany the verse along with short sections that list a few of each president's accomplishments and important events during his term of office.

The Tell Me More! section fills in the young reader on additional information about the president or the family pets. You'll learn that when Thomas Jefferson's two bear cubs grew too big for their White House cages, Jefferson sent them to live at a museum. (The Washington Zoo had not been opened yet!)

In the exotic pet category, John Quincy Adams had a pet alligator that was kept in the East Room of the White House; Martin Van Buren was gifted two baby tigers by the Sultan of Oman, which Congress demanded he turn over to a zoo; and Calvin Coolidge was quite attached to his raccoon named Rebecca. Actually, Coolidge had over twenty animals, including a lion, hippo, wallaby and bobcat.

Since the presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the pet of choice for most First Families has been a dog. The Kennedys sweetened the pot with a pony (for Carolyn), birds, rabbits and hamsters. The occasional cat slipped into the mix in later presidencies as did a goldfish or two.

It's a delightful book, and the entire family will enjoy honing up on presidential pets and how they did (or didn't) fit into life within the White House.

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