Your Pets Secret Lives: The Truth Behind Your Pets' Wildest Behaviors (Your Hidden Life)

 
5.0 (2)
 
0.0 (0)
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Your Pets Secret Lives: The Truth Behind Your Pets' Wildest Behaviors (Your Hidden Life)
Co-Authors / Illustrators
Age Range
8+
Release Date
May 28, 2024
ISBN
978-1536226478
Buy This Book
      
From poop-eating pups to supersmooth spy snakes, get a glimpse of our pets’ amazing secret lives with this funny and fact-filled exposé!

Butt-sniffing dogs. Terrified tarantulas. Canaries with invisible force fields? Yep—it turns out our pets experience the world in totally different ways than we do. Unlock some of your nonhuman family members’ wildest behaviors in this hilarious (and sometimes shiver-worthy) illustrated guide to their secret lives, complete with exciting interviews with the scientists who research them. From fierce hamster stink wars to the hidden wild side of Bubbles the goldfish, who knew there was so much more to understand about our furry and scaly friends? Back matter includes websites for do-it-yourself research, a bibliography of real studies and scientists, a glossary, and even some how-to-draws (how about tapeworms high-fiving on a poop rocket?). Bold, playful illustrations and witty text combine in this delightfully fun and gross page-flipper from the team behind Your Hidden Life: Unseen Jungle.

Editor reviews

2 reviews
Quirky explanations of your pets mystifying behavior
Overall rating
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
Learning Value
 
5.0
Your Pet’s Secret Lives was a quirky nonfiction read on unusual facts about our common pets. There are so many HOW TO CARE for your pet books out on the market, but this book is worth your time once you have facts and care down for your pets because it goes beyond the basics. It dives into the biology and quirky reasons behind some of our pet's more mystifying behavior. The tone is perfect for drawing you in and making you laugh while learning. I loved that the animals were given pet names to help the reader visualize the information and make it more approachable for readers to understand.
One of the passages that stood out to me was the chapter on dogs liking to align their bodies along the earth’s north-south magnetic field when using the bathroom. While that was new and interesting information, the book also made an aside about how there are so many amazing job possibilities out there like watching dogs pee, and how you can follow your dream. While that is a hilarious example, I do like that the idea was put out there because so many children do not have a good idea of the varied jobs there are. The book continued to back up that idea with interviews with different scientists in the field. The research presented was interesting but also the continued idea that your hobbies could lead to interesting job opportunities that then could change our current understanding of the world. I also really appreciated the scientists’ highlighted women and POC as a bonus of allowing more children the possibility of seeing someone like them making strides in the human canon of knowledge.
Another point made that caught my attention was the emphasis on what a bad idea it is to release pets into the wild. I had no idea that goldfish that seem so harmless could hurt the local habitat so much. Of course, there are also ball pythons that are destroying the Florida Everglades which also received some attention in the book.
The book heavily delved into dogs and cats with the other animals getting fewer pages. Everything was interesting but maybe that means more people are needed to study these other animals to find their quirky behaviors for future books. Overall, this book was such a fun read with great explanations. It was 200 pages of a nonfiction book that I read in just a few hours because I couldn’t wait to find out more.
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What Your Ferret Isn't Telling You
Overall rating
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
Learning Value
 
5.0
From the team that brought you Unseen Jungle: The Microbes that Secretly Control Our World comes a fantastic look into what makes pets of all kinds tick! Accompanied by Wilson's charming illustrations, there is information about a wide range of pets and their sometimes strange behaviors.

As a dog lover, I appreciated that the book started with man's best friend... even if things got a little gross when talking about the different kinds of worms that dogs can pick up! Even though I am always good about giving my dogs heartworm medicine, it's very important to understand how easy it is for dogs to get worms, and I can see young readers convincing parents that this treatment for their pets is important, even if it can be expensive. There's a lot of information about cats, their nocturnal habits, and their hunting instincts, and even some discussion of whether or not your cat really likes you. (Even though I've made peace with my grandcat, I still believe that MOST cats just want to do me in!)

Dogs and cats aren't the only pets discussed. Why are birds such messy eaters? It's their job. It was especially interesting to read about the relationships that birds have with each other. I'm not convinced that I could make the life of a goldfish any better, but there are very convincing arguments for ways to do this. I wasn't surprised that gerbils and hamsters communicate through their odors, and I learned a few things about ferrets and rabbits as well. There's even a fascinating bit about reptile parthenogenesis, as well as information about tarantulas and lizards.
Good Points
This ends with information about jobs that are related to animal and pet care, making this a great book to read alongside French's How to Be a Vet. There are also a lot of source notes and internet sites for further research. There are several interviews with scientists who specialize is various pets as well. Rice is an entomologist, and does a great job of explaining science on a middle grade level.

This was just the right length for pleasure reading even though it was packed with information. There's plenty of white space on the page, and Wilson't illustrations support the humorous and conversational tone of the text. Hand this to pet lovers and aspiring vets along with Keenan's Animals in the House, Brownlee's Cute, Furry, and Deadly, Mills' Guide to Kittens and Guide to Puppies, and the work of Alexandra Horowitz, who has worked with Rice.
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