Author: Robert Burleigh
Illustrator: Peter Catalanotto
Interest Level: Ages 5-9
About This Book: Owen and his dog, Sheepie, are best friends. They like to play, take long walks, and chase each other in the yard. But Sheepie is getting old. He can't fetch a stick as quickly as he used to, and sometimes Owen has to help him climb the stairs. Then one day Sheepie doesn't wake up. Owen has to part with his old pal, but his father helps him understand that Sheepie will always be part of their happy memories. -from the book jacket
Why It's On My Bookshelf: This is an important read for any child who has had to say goodbye to a pet. It is very beautifully written. Throughout the school year many of our students lose family pets and it is very upsetting for them. They are grieving. I have quite a few books on the loss of a pet for this very reason. One of the things I notice in children is the confusion they feel. Explaining the grieving cycle to students is SO important. Books on pet loss can be helpful to kids experiencing grief. I look for stories that have characters students can relate to. Good-bye Sheepie is just that story. It's extremely healing. I allow children to read this book alone or with me. The illustrations are also so warm and speak so beautifully of Owen's love for Sheepie. Kids want to talk about their grief and they need adults to help them with their closure while remembering to cherish the memories.
A Link to This Book and Others You Might Find Helpful: