Review Blog

Nov 09 2012

RSPCA bumper book of pets and other animals

cover image

Random House, 2012. ISBN 978174275711 7.
(Age: 7+) Recommended. Non fiction. RSPCA. Animals. RSPCA and Random House have a number of pet books published recently (A pet isn't just for Christmas and a series about pets called, RSPCA Animal tales), following the line of being responsible for your pets if you choose to have one. With the astonishing fact that most abandoned animals are handed into RSPCA and other animal shelters around Christmas, this is a timely book to have available in the library, classroom and at home, where pets are under discussion.
A large format soft covered handbook of information, this tome of some 100 pages will engage its readership easily. The introduction gives an outline of what is to be found in the book, while the following page exhorts would be pet owners to think seriously about the responsibilities of pet ownership, followed by a list of things to consider before taking that step. After that, the book is divided into sections dealing with dogs, cats, guinea pigs and rabbits, horses, rats and mice, ferrets, birds, reptiles and amphibians and finally fish. Each section discusses topics such as grooming, diet, exercise, health, lifespan, appearance, training and so on, with a few pages about the most popular breeds. There are useful checklists about where to get your pet from and a checklist of the needs to collect and have ready for your animal when it comes home. These are most handy and make informative reading.
After 70 pages of pets, the book includes a section about farmyard animals, followed by a chapter on Australian wildlife, then fun stuff, a glossary and words about the work of the RSPCA. But I searched in vain for an index.
All in all an informative and fascinating book, full of interesting information, and spreading the message that pets are for life and need to be considered well before they are bought. The RSPCA provides a shelter from which pets can be bought after they have become ownerless.
Fran Knight

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