Well, I had a couple of quick afterthoughts:

-there are Margery Sharpe's Miss Bianca books, which I read a lot at that age--I reread one recently, though, and was surprised at how scary I thought it was (also rather twee, I'm afraid). You might preread one or two (The Rescuers is the first one) and see what you think.

-JP Martin's Uncle books are really rather fun (Uncle is an elephant), some pictures, not scary at all, quite amusing in a wry sort of way.

-A Cricket in Times Square is another classic. Garth Williams illustrations, and I'm forgetting the author for a minute--George Selden or something like that?

-Christie Harris's Mouse Woman books are terrific (retellings of traditional Haida tales).

-Hugh Lofting's Dr. Dolittle is an oldie but goodie (and there are editions out now that clean up some of the racist bits, thankfully-you may still want to preread, just in case).

-there's always Aesop's Fables, and Kipling's Just So Stories--lots of lovely illustrated versions of these.

-I haven't read it since I was a child, but isn't Eleanor Estes' Ginger Pye about a dog?

-my little animal lovers loved Farley Mowat's Owls in the Family and The Dog who Wouldn't Be (a boy is the protagonist in both cases, but the [true] stories are completely centered on his relationship with the animals in the titles)

peace
minnie


Edited by minniemarx (04/07/10 05:50 PM)
Edit Reason: a couple more ideas...