Awesome Animals to Cheer Us Up

December 16, 2012 | M. Elwood

Comments (4)

Sometimes the world is a grim and depressing place. At these times I find comfort in animals. If my cat isn't available, I'll look at animal videos on the Internet. There are also lots of books in the library system about animals and their humans.


Alex and Me: How a Scientist and a Parrot Discovered a Hidden World of Animal Intelligence--and Formed a Deep Bond in the Process by Irene Pepperberg
Animal psychologist Pepperberg adopted Alex an African Grey Parrot and bonded with him while conducting a 30-year study on language learning in non-human animals.



Buddy: How a Rooster Made Me a Family Man by Brian McGroary
McGroary's new wife Pam moves in with two daughters and seven animals including a cantankerous rooster named Buddy. While struggling to maintain his alpha male status in the house, McGroary begins to realize that he can learn a lot about relationships from the bird.


Chicken chroniclesThe Chicken Chronicles: Sitting with the Angels who Have Returned with My Memories: Glorious, Rufus, Gertrude Stein, Splendor, Hortensia, Agnes of God, The Gladyses and Babe by Alice Walker
Author Alice Walker describes the satisfaction and inspiration she has derived from her chickens.

Eagle named freedom
An Eagle Named Freedom: My True Story of a Remarkable Friendship by Jeff Guidry
Large Print
Guidry was a volunteer at the Sarvey Wildlife Center in Washington when he became the primary caregiver for a seriously injured bald eagle. The recovery of the bird inspires Guidry when he faces his own health crisis.

Good good pigThe Good, Good Pig: the Extraordinary Life of Christopher Hogwood by Sy Montgomery
Large Print
Naturalist Sy Montgomery adopts a sickly piglet and discovers to her surprise that his quirky personality helps her develop relationships with the humans in her town.

A Lion Called Christian by Anthony Bourke and John Rendall
Two friends adopt a lion cub at Harrod's. When it outgrows their London flat, they decide it is best to release him into the wild in Kenya.




Modoc: the True Story of the Greatest Elephant that Ever Lived by Ralph Helfer
Helfer tells the story of the remarkable bond between Modoc, a circus elephant and Bram, the son of the elephant trainer.


Wesley the Owl: the Remarkable Story of an Owl and His Girl
by Stacey O'Brien

Large Print
Talking Book (restricted to Print Disabled patrons)
A powerful bond develops between biologist O'Brien and the injured barn owl she adopts.


If you'd prefer your animals on screen try:

Bringing Up Baby
Katharine Hepburn is a kooky heiress with a leopard; Cary Grant is a soon-to-be married paleontologist. Their paths cross and hilarity ensues. This brilliant screwball comedy is one of my favourite movies.

For more animal related suggestions:

You can also search the library catalogue for human-animal relationships.