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Doggy Ditties from A to Z

Some are wrinkly, some are splashy.
Some are smelly and some are scratchy.
There are doggies that dig, doggies that prance,
Doggies that snooze and doggies that dance.

Join the fun and find your favourite pup
In this parade of pooches from A to Z

Just be prepared for the fact that many of these dogs have problems such as fleas, dribbling, being rather unusual looking, and worst of all… being very smelly!

Children love the rhymes and the wonderful bright illustrations that bring each breed to life, and the fact that it is a bit silly and a teeny bit rude. Have fun on the last page trying to spot all the dogs having fun (and being a bit naughty) at the park.

Paperback format
24cm x 34cm
32 pages


Illustrated by Myles Lawford

Originally published by Scholastic, Doggy Ditties from A to Z  was a finalist in the 2015 Children’s Choice awards. It’s no longer available via mainstream channels, but thanks to a stash of copies held by author Jo van Dam, we’re pleased to offer this much-loved book to KKRKB book buyers.

Children from pre-school to Year 6 will enjoy Myles’ vibrant illustrations and Jo’s funny rhymes. It is the sort of book you can dip in to and just read a few poems or read from cover to cover, use it as a tool to teach the alphabet, learn different dog breeds or use as a tool to teach poetic devices. Look on Jo’s author page for her teaching notes with handy hints on poetic devices.


Review by Rachel Moore on the Booksellers NZ blog: “This book was a huge hit with my class of five year olds. It has the key ingredients for success – lovely big illustrations, lots of language play, and lots and lots of dogs!

“A breed of dog is introduced for each letter – from Affenpinscher to Zuchon – with a “ditty” to describe the traits of the dog. The ditties come in a variety of styles, from limericks to rhyming couplets, and a variety of rhyme schemes. The variations add interest, and are make the book perfect for dipping into to read a few poems here and there.”
Read the full review.

A reader review on Goodreads: “Each letter introduces a dog and it really is complete from A to Z!. There are much loved and familiar dogs such as the Labrador and Poodle, but also some unusual and often tricky names such as the Affenpinscher and the Xoloitzcuintli (van Dam helpfully includes the pronunciation for that one).

“Using a variety of poetic styles such as haiku, rhyming couplets and limericks the reader (or listener) is introduced to each unique doggie character by name and their very funny personalities such as Murray the Husky who loved hot curry, or Priscilla the Poodle and her boyfriend Lance from France.”
Read the full review.

Meet Kiwi author Jo van Dam Jo-van-Dam-author

Jo is the librarian at two central Auckland Primary schools and an author of books for small people… with an animal theme to date. She says that working with children and books is the best job in the world; very rewarding and often very funny. Jo emigrated from England when she was ten years old and is very glad her family made the decision to move here. She is married with two lovely grown up children.

Find out more about Jo and how to contact her on her author page.


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