The Poky Little Puppy

Poky little puppy.jpg

First year published

The Poky Little Puppy was written by Janette Sebring Lowrey and illustrated by Gustaf Tenggren. It was first published in 1942 as one of the first 12 books in the Simon and Schuster series Little Golden Books. The copyright was renewed in 1970.

In the 1980s a short-lived plush Poky was released, but did not sell well.

As of the year 2001, it was the single all-time best-selling hardcover children's book in English; according to Publishers Weekly, it had sold nearly 15 million copies.[1]


Instead of following his siblings on adventures, the Poky Little Puppy decides to sniff a different patch of grass. In the beginning, his independence is rewarded. The puppies all dig underneath a fence to escape from their yard, but only the Poky Little Puppy's siblings are caught. The Poky Little Puppy avoids punishment because he's off exploring as his mother scolds his siblings, and he comes home alone after everyone is asleep. The Poky Little Puppy then eats the rice pudding that the mother was planning to give all the puppies but withheld because of the fence-digging incident.

Only at the end of the book, when the puppies make amends with their mother, fate catches up to the Poky Little Puppy. His siblings enjoy some strawberry shortcake, while the Poky Little Puppy is nowhere to be found. He misses out on the strawberry shortcake, and the book concludes with Poky Little Puppy going to bed without a bite and feeling "very sorry for himself."


  • In a commercial for Hallmark Cards, Ed holds The Poky Little Puppy and tries to read the title.
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