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Best Animal Books for Babies and Toddlers
Updated on
October 31, 2023

Best Animal Books for Babies and Toddlers

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Best Animal Books for Babies and Toddlers

If you’re fleshing out your little’s one’s first library, there are several book categories you’ll probaby want to dive into. There are the classic baby books that you were read, interactive books and ABC books to stimulate baby’s brain, and of course, animal books.

Cuteness abounds in these beloved animal books. Whether they feature a sweet critter as a main character or teach children about the joys and perils of the animal kingdom, these books will inspire an appreciation for the natural world in your child.

High contrast toys and books are great for baby’s eye development in the early weeks and months, so this book is perfect for introducing animals early on and getting baby to focus on images. Pair that with the sweet greetings each animal gives, and this makes a favorite first book.

Hello, Baby Animals


Who doesn’t love to pet cute baby animals? With this book’s touch-and-feel feature, your little one gets a fun, tactile introduction to lots of new animals, from a soft kitten to a fuzzy penguin to a velvety butterfly.

Baby Touch and Feel Animals


With bright illustrations and simple, straightforward wording, this may end up being your favorite animal book for purely educational purposes. Little ones from birth through the preschool years will love staring at the friendly, colorful animals and learning about who lives in each habitat.

Baby 101: Zoology for Babies


There are all kinds of babies in the world, and many of them are animals! Adorable drawings paired with the real names of these baby animals (did you know a baby owl is called an owlet?) makes this a delightful read for baby humans. And it’s an Indestructibles book, too, so your little one can bite, drool and scrunch this book as much as they like without making any rips or tears!

Indestructibles: Baby Animals


Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? (shown here in the Babylist Baby Starter Library collection) features all kinds of colorful animals! A big brown bear, a vivid red bird, a purple cat and a yellow duck are just a few of the creatures that cover each page, each one illustrated with vivid colors and textures. Get this book plus four others in our exclusive box.

Babylist Baby Starter Library Book Gift Box


A lift-the-flap reading experience that keeps kids guessing and feeling their way through. “I wrote to the zoo to send me a pet,” the narrator begins. “They sent me a …” What follows is a guessing game made more exciting with folding flaps, hidden panels and touch-and-feel fields that engage kids on a tactile level.

Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book


This book is filled with 100 vibrant photos of all types of animals from all over the world. Little ones will love pointing to the animals and learning what sounds they make.

First 100 Animals


How much does Big Nutbrown Hare love Little Nutbrown Hare? Turns out, a whole lot—to the moon and back to be exact! This sweet story is sure to become a favorite.

Guess How Much I Love You


Whether they’re starting daycare or going to school, sometimes separating from their adults can be a little scary. Chester raccoon’s mommy has a secret to make the time apart easier and gives him her love to carry around with him until they’re back together again.

The Kissing Hand


We love the BabyLit series for teaching all kinds of basics like colors, counting, anatomy and more. Naturally, this tiny version of The Jungle Book teaches jungle animals, so you can get your little one primed for lots of tiger rawrs and elephant trumpets.

The Jungle Book: A BabyLit Animals Primer


This book is nothing short of a classic at this point. Your little one will love the repetitive, rhyming structure, and the story itself—about a little llama who’s wondering just why their mama isn’t answering their beck and call immediately—just might resonate with you, too.

Llama Llama Red Pajama


This favorite by beloved author Sandra Boynton introduces the various sounds of the animal world and encourages kids to do the same. Little ones invariably love this activity, and it’s sure to send them into giggle fits, especially when accompanied by the illustrations of Boynton’s seriously silly signature animals.

Moo, Baa, La La La!


One day on the farm, Duck gets a wild idea—to ride a bicycle. As he pedals around the farm, he says hello to the other animals, who each responds with a “moo”, “squeak” or “neigh” and shares their opinions about ducks riding bikes. But once they all get a chance to borrow their own bike, they soon realize just how fun it is! Your little one will enjoy how silly it is for animals to ride bikes while learning about farm animals and the sounds they make.

Duck on a Bike


Clever rhymes and luscious illustrations make for a delightful reading experience for all ages. A little llama wanders the woods, asking his forest friends, “Is your mama a llama?” Each exchange is like a riddle, and the wordplay both engages young ears and helps build vocabulary.

Is Your Mama a Llama


Cows are funny as is, but cows with typewriters is a new level of barnyard absurdity. Especially when they begin leaving notes for the disgruntled farmer!

Click, Clack, Moo: Cows that Type


Gorgeous illustrations make this book a modern classic, steeped in Ukrainian tradition with a dash of forest animal hijinx. It’s the story of a little boy who wanted white mittens, the doting grandmother who knit them for him and the adventures that ensue when he loses the white mitten in the white snow.

The Mitten


The other bulls want to fight. Ferdinand wants to smell flowers. It’s a peace-loving message that’s charmed readers since 1936. It’s hard to think of a more lovable character than Ferdinand the Bull, whose peaceful ways put him at odds with the violent animal behavior that surrounds him.

The Story of Ferdinand

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