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Prudence Wants a Pet

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  982 ratings  ·  175 reviews
Prudence wants a pet. Desperately.
“No,” says Dad, “pets cost too much to keep.”
“No,” says Mom, “pets make noise.”
But Prudence is determined. She finds her own pet. It is a…branch. But Branch isn't exactly the pet of her dreams, and neither are Twig, Mr. Round (a car tire), or her baby brother Milo.
Poor Prudence. Will she ever find the perfect pet?
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published June 21st 2011 by Roaring Brook Press
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Average rating 4.09  · 
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 ·  982 ratings  ·  175 reviews

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Jan 18, 2013 rated it it was ok
I feel like such a stick in the mud for giving this otherwise charming book such a low score when almost everyone else gives it 5 stars. The illustrations are terrific and the humor is droll, but I have issues with the idea that Prudence leaves two of her "pets" (a tire and a shoe) in the junkyard because they will be "happier" there. So many real pets are abandoned each year in such a manner. This book reinforces the idea that it's perfectly fine to abandon your pets in the junkyard. It would ...more
Oct 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Prudence Wants a Pet by Cathleen Daly, illustrated by Stephen Michael King, follows a girl who so desperately wants a pet that she keeps trying to find a variety of substitutes.

Prudence's parents say pets cost too much to keep, make noise, are messy, and take up space. So Prudence got a branch for a pet. She dragged it to school and back. After Dad tripped over branch eight times he broke it into twigs. Prudence tries out twig, shoe (Formal Footware), her little brother Milo, and Mr. Round (a
Mar 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Prudence wants a pet. She REALLY wants a pet. Her parents say NO. But this endearing book tells the story of how she gets one. Or, more than one. You see, her first pet is named Branch. Because it is a branch. Prudence takes very good care of Branch, giving it lots of exercise. It doesn't eat much, just air. But one day Dad trips on Branch while it is sitting on the doorstep.

Prudence's next pet is named Twig. It lives in her pocket. Then, there is a little incident with the washing machine...

Lisa Vegan
I always wanted a dog when I was growing up and I’m still attracted to “I want a pet” type books. I have many on my shelves, including these four with similar titles: I Want A Dog and I Really Want a Dog and I Want a Dog! and I Want a Dog!. And here’s one I haven’t read yet, with the same theme but a differently worded title: Wanted: The Perfect Pet. And there are others. I couldn’t have a dog or cat when I was young. I was fortunate to have a dog for nine years as an adult but most of my life I ...more
Jul 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
Audience: Primary
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Pre-reading strategy: I would mix two strategies with this book. I would have my students take a faster-paced "Picture Walk" looking only at her possible pets. As they are taking their picture walk, students will fill out a "Two-Column Notes" sheet. On the left hand side, they will list each "pet" she owns and make one prediction of why or why not that pet is a "suitable" pet. Then as we read, we will fill in the right hand side with the actual outcomes
Oct 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Shelves: 2011, childrens, pets
This is a hilarious story about a little girl who is determined to have a pet. Despite her parents repeated denials, she is willing to use her imagination and creativity to make it happen on her own, even with inanimate objects. She is such a sweet and persistant little girl, and it shows that she really just wants a pet to love and care for.

I would warn parents who are loathe to bring an animal into the house - this is a story about getting a pet and any child who reads this will likely hope
Katie Fitzgerald
Prudence is so desperate for a pet that she begins adopting household objects and trying to domesticate them. It begins with a branch named Branch, who becomes dismembered when dad trips over him one too many times. Later, Pru turns to such things as a car tire, her brother, Milo, and - my personal favorite - a shoe called "Formal Footwear." But none of these is the pet of her dreams, and she persists, until finally Mom and Dad give in.

While I was somewhat unsure why Prudence's parents
Jul 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Audience: Primary

Genre: Picture Book/Realistic Fiction

The book Prudence Wants a Pet would lend itself well to the pre-reading picture walk strategy. I would use this book as a read aloud during our animal unit. The picture walk strategy uses the illustrations to stimulate questions to get the students discussing and predicting what the story may be about. It helps children to connect the illustrations to their own experiences (making connections) and activate their prior knowledge, using text to
Jul 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
GENRE: Realistic Fiction, Humor

PRE-READING STRATEGY: Activating Background Knowledge/Making Connections
* The Activating Background Knowledge/Making Connections strategy is a strategy where teachers ask a specific question relating to a text prior to reading. Asking a specific question allows thinking to spark and then make a connections chart prior to reading that will grow during and after reading the text.
* I chose this strategy for Prudence Wants a Pet because I feel that
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
This is such a cute story, and one that received some great laughs from both my kids and myself.

Prudence desperately wants a pet, and no matter how many times she asks she's constantly told no. Using her imagination, Prudence decides to adopt various things around her house and make them her pet, and in the end a tree branch, a shoe, her little brother and even a tire aren't very fun pets.

This is a delightful read that kids will really enjoy. It's a story both kids and some adults alike will be
Jan 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Holy cow, after reading two pages of this I stopped and said, "This is Ally!" Prudence reminded me so much of my younger daughter, who wanted a pet so badly when she was little she got a little desperate from time to time.

Prudence wants a pet. Mom and Dad say no. So she finds one. How about this branch? He worked out okay for a little while. Was never hungry, didn't drink much. But Branch tripped Dad one too many times, and the scene was ugly. Then Prudence had a pet named Twig (you can figure
Carrie Gelson
Feb 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Okay start counting how many books you have read about a child who really wants a pet and the parents say no. No, it’s too much work. No, you won’t look after it. No, we don’t have time, space, energy . . . I can think of many. So how can another book on this theme really seem fresh, new, inspired? Prudence Wants a Pet written by Cathleen Daly and illustrated by Stephen Michael King will sweep you off your feet. This book is simply about the determination and charisma of Prudence. And yes, her ...more
Oct 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Prudence is a young girl that really, really wants a pet. Every time she asks, her parents say no. Prudence decides to take matters into her own hands and finds herself a pet. First has a pet branch, then a twig, then a shoe, then her brother. Next is a car tire, and then sea buddies. None of these give Prudence the fulfillments of a real pet. After feeling sad and upset, Prudence spends the day in her closet. A week later it is Prudence's birthday. Her present is in a big pink box with holes. ...more
Colby Sharp
Aug 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book was kind of like a picture book version of "When Life Gives you OJ". I am in love with Prudence. Can't wait to use this book to help me teach character.
Jan 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
We read this book at bedtime last night and everyone, ages 3 to 37, laughed so hard we cried. Very, very funny.
Aug 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids
Really great for slightly older kids that will get the humor. My son (five) laughed so hard at her pet shoe (and its name) that he didn't breathe for almost a minute.
Jun 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
An excellent, quriky new addition to the kid-wants-a-pet genre of picture books. Full review to follow at

Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
This one really worked for me. Both text and illustrations. I nearly laughed pretty hard when Prudence tried to use her baby brother as a "pet" when other things failed.
Feb 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: children-picture
There is no doubt this is an adorable book, both the story and the illustrations, but is adorable enough? I think not as this book has to compete with so many other fiction books in the market place. As other readers have noticed, the endings for each pet including her little brother Milo were less than ideal. In addition there really was no instruction on proper care for pets. Some may think me petty but the illustrations by Stephen Michael King looked so blonde and Caucasian. Why is it that ...more
Nov 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Charming story about a girl who really wants a pet. She chooses a stick, then a twig, a tire, a baby brother, sea monkeys, but something always goes wrong. Eventually she gets a cat for her birthday.
Clever illustrations and simple text.
Mar 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love this book. One of my new favorites.
Taylor Kundel-Gower
Dec 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
That's good stuff.
John Yelverton
Jun 11, 2018 rated it liked it
It is a cute little children's book about a little girl named Prudence who really, really wants a pet of her own.
Oct 25, 2018 rated it it was ok

I found this book to be rather dumb.
Sarah Oswalt
Sep 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s
My favorite part of this book was when she had a bet branch. I would use this book to teach my students the differences between wanting a pet and actually getting a pet.
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Prudence is my Spirit Person.
Jan 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Oh my goodness. Precious.
Jo Oehrlein
Apr 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
The story of a creative girl who wants a pet. When her parents say no, she tries all sorts of pet alternatives. None are satisfying for various reasons.
Mar 15, 2017 rated it liked it
I, too, was bothered by the way some pets were discarded "set free" as a way of moving on to the next one... weren't there other options available than just abandonment? Hmmm...
Jul 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-lit
Audience: Primary
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Pre-Reading Strategy:
I would use the first lines pre-reading strategy for this book because the first sentence is the main idea, and this would get the students thinking about the story. Also, the illustrations under the first sentence would get the students thinking about what kind of pet Prudence might get or what she might need to do in order to get a pet. First lines is a strategy where a teacher or the students read the first sentence or the first
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Cathleen Daly is performer and writer who lives in the Bay Area outside San Francisco. Besides writing many little unintelligible notes to herself, she writes poetry, fiction and experimental theater. She has danced onstage with a cupcake attached to the top of her head with a single bobby-pin. Sometimes it fell off.
Her poetry has been published in a variety of journals and in Literary Mama, The