Is your kid curious about cats or begging for a kitten of their own? Do they just love tales about kittens and feline friends? This list of cat books for kids includes cat stories as well as kid-focused cat reference books for young readers trying to up their cat IQ.
(Just a heads up, WeAreTeachers may collect a share of sales from the links on this page. We only recommend items our team loves!)
Picture Books About Cats for Early Readers
1. They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel
This 2017 Caldecott Honor book offers a lesson on the perspectives of others as a cat is viewed on each page spread from the viewpoint of a different creature or human.
Buy it: They All Saw a Cat on Amazon
2. Inside Cat by Brendan Wenzel
The inside cat in this book offers a lesson on how to avoid the common refrain “I’m bored” by following a cat as it wanders and observes the many details of the place it calls home.
Buy it: Inside Cat on Amazon
3. Cat Dog by Mem Fox, illustrated by Mark Teague
This call-and-response book about a cat-and-dog pair who are joined by an intruding mouse offers up questions that appear to be answered one way, until situations are revealed to be not exactly as they appear.
Buy it: Cat Dog on Amazon
4. Hi, Cat! by Ezra Jack Keats
When a stray cat intrudes on his street show with neighborhood kids, Archie’s not pleased with the mischievous feline. But like many of Keats’ books, this day-in-the-life story of a kid (and a cat) ultimately leaves you feeling brighter.
Buy it: Hi, Cat! on Amazon
5. The White House Cat by Cylin Busby, illustrated by Neely Daggett
Willow Biden isn’t just the White House cat, she’s the first-ever White House cat—and in this book, she gives her own tour of the People’s House.
Buy it: The White House Cat on Amazon
6. If You Give a Cat a Cupcake by Laura Numeroff, illustrated by Felicia Bond
Numeroff and Bond famously collaborated on If You Give a Mouse a Cookie and are back, considering the fun and silly chain of events that occur if you give a cat a cupcake.
Buy it: If You Give a Cat a Cupcake on Amazon
7. Hero Cat by Eileen Spinelli, illustrated by Jo Ellen McAllister Stammen
This book honors the tenth anniversary of the real-life drama of a homeless cat that ran into a burning building to save her kittens.
Buy it: Hero Cat on Amazon
8. Pete the Cat and the Treasure Map by James Dean
The well-known and best-selling Pete the Cat is off on another adventure as he sets sail to find gold and jewels.
Buy it: Pete the Cat and the Treasure Map on Amazon
Chapter and Reference Books for Independent Readers
9. Magic Kitten: A Summer Spell by Sue Bentley, illustrated by Angela Swan
Newly independent readers with a fondness for felines will love this first in a series about a girl lamenting her summer in the country until she meets a very cute and special kitten.
Buy it: Magic Kitten: A Summer Spell on Amazon
10. National Geographic Kids: Adventure Cat! by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld
The cool thing about this early reader is that all the stories are true. Readers meet three real cats in photo stories detailing their adventures.
Buy it: Adventure Cat! on Amazon
11. Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate
Crenshaw the cat is imaginary in this very real middle-grade novel from Applegate. Jackson’s family falls on very hard times and he relies on his not-real but very important friend Crenshaw to help him through it.
Buy it: Crenshaw on Amazon
12. Socks by Beverly Cleary
Famed children’s author Beverly Cleary turns her uncanny ability to understand human nature into understanding pet nature in this story of a doted-on cat that gets jealous when a new baby arrives.
Buy it: Socks on Amazon
13. National Geographic Kids: Cat Breed Guide by Gary Weitzman and Stephanie Drimmer
Whether you’re in the market for a pet cat or just fond of felines, this full-color guide reviews 71 breeds, with fun facts included for each, as well as spreads dedicated to pop culture cats, prehistoric felines, and more.
Buy it: Cat Breed Guide on Amazon
14. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Cats by Angela Rixon
A comprehensive look at every size, shape, and stripe of domestic cat, this 256-page volume affords would-be cat owners and cat enthusiasts alike plenty of material to enjoy and consider.
Buy it: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Cats on Amazon
15. Brain Fun Picture Puzzles: All Cats! by Michele Filon
Kitty-centric picture puzzles are more than cute. These visual challenges will keep young cat lovers entertained on rainy days or long car rides, and they’re good for mental acuity, too!
Buy it: Brain Fun Picture Puzzles: All Cats! on Amazon
16. The Cat Encyclopedia for Kids by Joanne Mattern
Compiling a 12-book series of cat books into one 208-page volume, this all-things-cat reference book covers everything from breed origins and traits to care instructions for both common and rare house-cat types.
Buy it: The Cat Encyclopedia for Kids on Amazon