Evidently, children so much love stories and folktales especially when such stories are about animals. They tend to be more attracted to these animal characters and can relate easier to them.
Truly, nothing thrills children more than a fun time of storytelling. Whether at bedtime, at dinner, or anytime at all, kids would pay apt attention to animal stories. Consider that you are now creative enough to be a little dramatic with these animal stories, you will just get the kids hooked.
Amazingly, kids tend to learn a lot of morals from these animal stories. They are also more inclined to remember them all through their lives especially if familiar animal characters are used in the stories.
However, you don’t need to start writing animal stories afresh for your kids just to impress them. We have drafted a compilation of some really interesting animal stories you can tell to your kids. You are free to adapt them to your local environment and things they know.
Some Wonderful Animal Stories for Kids
1. The Hare and the Tortoise
Tired of the bragging of a speedy hare, a tortoise challenges it to a race. The overconfident hare accepts the competition and runs as fast as it can after the race begins.
Soon it gets tired and decides to rest, thinking that there’s plenty of time to relax before the tortoise can catch up with it. Meanwhile, the tortoise continues to walk slowly, until it reaches the finish line. The overslept hare wakes up, only to be shocked that a slow-moving tortoise beat it in the race.
Lesson: Consistency pays. Slow and steady wins the race.
2. The Two Goats
One day, two goats try to cross a weak and narrow bridge across the river. The goats are at either end of the bridge, but neither is ready to make way for the other. They come to the centre of the bridge and begin fighting about who should cross first. As they fight mindlessly, the bridge gives in, taking both the goats down into the river with it.
Lesson: It is always prudent to know when to give-in and cut our losses.
3. The Hare and the Hound
One day, a strong and powerful hound was chasing a hare. After running for a long time, the tired hound gives up the hunt. A herd of goats watching this mocks the hound, saying that the little one is better than the beast. To this, the hound responds: “The rabbit was running for its life, I was only running for dinner. That is the difference between us.”
Lesson: Motivation can lead to higher productivity. Incentive spurs action.
4. The Ugly Duckling
A farmer had a duck, which laid ten eggs. Soon, they all hatched. Of the ten, nine ducklings looked like the mom. The tenth one was big, gray, and ugly. All the other ducklings made fun of the ugly one. Unhappy in the farm, the poor duckling ran away to a river nearby.
There he sees white, beautiful swans. Afraid and lost, he wanted to drown in the river. But when he looked at his reflection in the river, he realized that he was not an ugly duckling, but a beautiful swan!
Lesson: You are beautiful just the way you are.
5. The Fisherman and The Little Fish
There was once a fisherman whose livelihood depended on his catch. One day, he was able to catch only one small fish. The fish, in its desperation to live, says “Please leave me, kind sir.
I am small and of no use to you. Let me back into the river and I can grow bigger. You can then catch me and make more money.” The wise fisherman replies, “ I will not give up a certain profit for one that doesn’t exist yet.”
Lesson: Do not forgo a certain gain for an uncertain profit.
6. A Watchdog that Couldn’t be Bribed
Fanny the farm dog was in her kennel in the yard one night when she was woken by a burglar creeping towards the house. She gave a warning growl. The burglar tried to make her a friend by throwing her a piece of chocolate.
Fanny loved chocolate, but she knew something was wrong and growled louder. The thief threw her another piece, but this time Fanny began barking furiously. Her master woke up, and poked his head out of the window, holding his shotgun.
The burglar ran as fast as his legs would take him. Fanny hadn’t forgotten who fed her every day, and she knew that was better than two pieces of chocolate.
Lesson: You must not betray the one that was benevolent to you for any price.
7. The Fox and the Goat
Walking alone in the forest, an unlucky fox falls into a well one day. Unable to get out, he waits for help. A passing goat sees the fox and asks him why he is in the well.
The cunning fox responds, “there is going to be a great drought, and I am here to make sure I have water.” The gullible goat believes this and jumps into the well. The fox swiftly jumps on the goat and uses its horns to reach the top, leaving the goat in the well.
Lesson: Be objective in taking suggestions from others. Never trust the advice of a man in difficulties.
8. The Bald Dog
Horace the dog was very proud of his appearance. Half his fur was grey and half was black. He thought it made him look very distinguished. He went to see his mother once a week, but she didn’t like his grey hair.
She thought they made him look too old, so every week she pulled a few out. He went to see his sister as well, but she didn’t like black hair, because she thought it made him look bad-tempered. Every week she pulled a few out. The end of it was that poor old Horace became the first bald dog. His mother had to knit him a coat to keep him warm.
Lesson: Don’t let people’s opinion make you alter who you are.
9. The Fox and the Grapes
On a hot summer day, a fox comes upon an orchard and sees a bunch of ripened grapes. It thinks: “Just what I need to quench my thirst.” It moves back a few paces, runs, and jumps but falls short of reaching the grapes. It tries in different ways to reach the bunch of grapes, but in vain. He finally gives up, and says to himself “I am sure they are sour anyway.”
Lesson: It is easy to despise what you cannot get your hands on, but you need to appreciate goodness.
10. The Lion and the Boar
It was a hot summer day. A lion and a boar reach a small water body for a drink. They begin arguing and fighting about who should drink first. After a while, they are tired and stop for breath, when they notice vultures above.
Soon they realize that the vultures are waiting for one or both of them to fall, to feast on them. The lion and the boar then decide that it was best to makeup and be friends than fight and become food for vultures. They drink the water together and go their way after.
Lesson: Those who strive are often watched by others to take advantage of their defeat.
11. Nine Days for the Thief, One Day for the Owner
A long, long time ago, or so they say, there was a thief who nobody could catch. Everybody complained to Bill, the local wizard, but he was too lazy to do anything – until the thief stole his favourite dinosaur-flavoured toffees.
He set a trap. He made some magic potion and left it by an open window. He did behind the curtains until a hand came in and grabbed the potion.
Bill the Wizard listened. “Glug, glug… EEK,” he heard. He went to the window and saw a little ant scuttling away. “That worked rather well,” chuckled Bill the Wizard, and went to bed. Even today you can see ants running around looking for magic potion to turn them back into people!
Lesson: Do not take what is not given to you.
12. The Ant and the Grasshopper
It was a pleasant day and the grasshopper was in a gay mood, singing and dancing around. He sees an ant carrying a heavy corn kernel to its nest. The grasshopper asks the ant to join him for some fun, instead of toiling away like that. The ant tells him that it is preparing for winter when food would be scarce.
The grasshopper brushes the thought and says why bother when the present is good. Winter soon begins, and the grasshopper has no food to survive, while the ants enjoy the corn in the warmth of their nest.
Lesson: It is best to prepare for days of necessity. Make haste while there is sunshine.
13. Two Cats and a Monkey
After a feast, two cats see a piece of cake and start fighting for it. A monkey sees this as an opportunity for gain and offers to help them. The monkey divides the cake into two parts but shakes its head saying they are unequal. He takes a bite of one piece and then the other, but still finds them unequal. He continues doing so until there is no more cake left, leaving the poor little cats disappointed.
Lesson: When you quarrel amongst yourselves, someone else gains from it.
14. Who Will Bell The Cat?
A horde of mice gathered one night to discuss the problems created by their common enemy, the cat. A lot of ideas were shared, but none seemed good enough to beat the cat. Then a young mouse suggested that they should tie a bell around the cat’s neck to know when it is approaching and escape the sly cat’s attacks. To this, an old, wise mouse asked, “That’s fine. But who will bell the cat?”
Lesson: It is easy to propose impossible remedies.
15. The Dog and the Shadow
A dog found a piece of meat one day. As it walked home, it had to cross a bridge over a stream. As it walked, it saw its reflection in the water and thought it was another dog with a piece of meat. The dog got greedy and decided to have that piece as well. He snapped at the reflection, and as soon as he opened his mouth, his piece of meat fell into the water and disappeared.
Lesson: Beware lest you lose the substance by grasping at the shadow.
16. The Lion and the Mouse
A lion was fast asleep in the jungle when a mouse started running all over him. The lion was angry that the mouse disturbed its sleep and was about to kill it with its paw.
The mouse begged the lion to pardon it, saying it could be of help to it one day. The lion laughed at that thought and walked away. Soon after that, the lion was trapped in a hunter’s net. The little mouse was passing by and saw the lion. It immediately tore the net with its sharp teeth and rescued the lion.
Lesson: Little friends may prove to be great friends. Everyone Matter.
17. A Bird in the Claw is Worth Two in a Tree
A hungry sparrow hawk was speeding through the sky when it spotted a little nightingale sitting in a tree-top, singing beautifully. Without a second thought, it swooped down and snatched the nightingale from her branch. She wriggled and squirmed, but couldn’t get free.
“Please don’t eat me,” begged the nightingale. “I’m such a little bird. I’d hardly make a mouthful for you. Let me go, and chase something bigger that would fill your tummy.” The sparrow hawk opened its beak wide. “If I could see something bigger, I would,” he said as he swallowed the nightingale. “But something is better than nothing.”
Lesson: Be careful what risk you take.
18. The Crow and the Pitcher
One day, a crow was very thirsty and found a pitcher with little water in it. It couldn’t reach the water with its beak. After a little thought, the crow came up with an idea. It picked up a few stones one at a time and put them in the pitcher, until the water came up. He happily drank the water and flew away.
Lesson: Little-by-little does the trick; keep moving, that is what counts.
19. The Eagle and the Arrow
Sitting on a lofty rock, an eagle was watching its prey move on the ground. A hunter, watching the eagle from behind a tree, shoots it with an arrow. As the eagle falls to the ground, with blood oozing from its wound, it sees that the arrow is made of its own plumage and thinks: “Alas, I am destroyed by an arrow made from my own feathers”.
Lesson: We often give our enemies the means for our own destruction.
One day, the stylish town mouse visits his cousin in the country. The country mouse welcomes his cousin warmly and gives him beans and bacon to eat.
Unimpressed with the food served, the town mouse boasts of a high life in the city and asks his cousin to go with him. They reach the town and go to a dining room to eat jelly and cake, where they are chased off by two huge dogs and run for their lives.
Lesson: Better beans and bacon in peace than cakes and ale in fear.
21. The Clever Monkey
Once upon a time, a clever monkey lived on an apple tree. It was friends with a foolish crocodile that lived in the river. The monkey shared the fruits of the tree with the crocodile every day.
The crocodile’s wife learns about this friendship and asks the crocodile to bring the monkey’s heart, which could be sweeter than the fruits of the tree. The couple invites the monkey for dinner and plans to eat his heart. The crocodile offers to take the monkey on its back so that it can cross the river to reach home.
On their way, the foolish crocodile mentions his wife’s desire to taste the monkey’s heart. The monkey is quick to understand its friend’s intentions and tricks it by saying: “Oh, but I forgot my heart at home. Take me back so we can get it.” As soon as they reach the riverbank, the monkey jumps off the crocodile’s back and vows never to trust it again.
Lesson: Remain calm and use presence of mind to get out of adverse situations.
22. Bunny the Lion-heart
Bunny the donkey was pottering about in the woods when he found a leopard skin. “Hee-haw,” he brayed to himself. “I’ve got a cool idea. I’ll wrap this leopard skin round myself and everyone will think I’m a real tough customer. Wicked!” So he did, and at first, it worked like a treat. All the animals he met took one look at him and jumped into the bushes.
Then he saw Freddie the Fox. “Hee-haw,” brayed Bunny. “Watch yourself, man. Aren’t you scared of a leopard?” Freddie sat down and laughed. “I would be, Bunny,” he said, “but I’ve never met a leopard before that brayed like a donkey.”
Lesson: Appearances can be deceiving. Be careful!
23. The Ass, the Fox, and the Lion
Two partners, the ass and the fox, go to a forest to find food. On their way, they meet a lion. The cunning fox promises the lion that he can have the ass for dinner, but asks that his life be spared. Together, they trick the ass to fall into a pit. As soon as the ass was secured, the lion jumps at the fox, killing it for its meat and ends up having both.
Lesson: Traitors must expect treachery.
24. The Fox Without A Tail
One day, a fox has its tail caught in a hunter’s trap. It panics and tries to release itself by pulling as hard as possible. In the attempt, it loses its tail completely. Without a tail, it feels ashamed to meet its fellow foxes.
Afraid that the others will laugh at it for not having a tail, the fox comes up with a plan. It calls for a meeting and tells the other foxes that they should cut their tails, which are useless and they also make it easier for the enemy to catch them.
To this, the chief fox responds, “I don’t think you would ask us to get rid of our graceful tails if you hadn’t lost yours.”
Lesson: Do not listen to the advice of him who seeks to lower you to his own level.
25. A Bully is Beaten
Alexander Beetle was pottering about in the grass when a hare came dashing up. “Help,” he cried, pointing with his paw. “That eagle is after me.” Alexander was a brave beetle, and he stood up on his back legs.
“Stop,” he called to the eagle as it swooped. “I’ve given the hare my protection, so you mustn’t touch him.” The eagle sneered at him. “Your protection? Who needs protection from a tiny creature like you?” She snatched the hare up in her great claws and flew away to her nest.
From that moment on, Alexandar Beetle was determined to have his revenge on the eagle. Every time she left her nest, he would fly up and roll one of her eggs out of it, leaving it to break into pieces on the ground below. After a while, there were no eggs left in the nest. And ever since, they say, eagles won’t lay eggs when there are beetles about.
Lesson: Be nice to everyone. Anyone can help you, anyone can cause you harm you.
26. The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
A wolf was having a tough time getting hold of sheep for meal. It decides to attack them discreetly by dressing itself in sheepskin. Soon, it starts leading the sheep one-by-one to a corner and eats them all.
Lesson: Appearances are deceptive.
27. The Fox and the Crow
A fox sees a crow carrying a piece of cheese to a tree top. It decides to get the cheese for himself. It goes to the tree and starts praising the crow that it can sing better than a cuckoo. Hearing this, the crow beams with pride and tries to sing. The piece of cheese falls to the ground as it opens its mouth to sing. The fox picks up the piece and runs away.
Lesson: Do not trust flatterers.
28. The Foolish Rabbit
When a nut falls on its head, a foolish rabbit thinks that the sky is falling and runs as fast as it can. On its way, it tells all the other animals that the sky is falling and spreads fear in the jungle. The lion, the king of the jungle, sees the chaos. On inspection, the lion finds out that it was just a nut and the rabbit was indeed foolish.
Lesson: Be careful who you trust, or you could be fooled.
29. The Unimportant Donkey
A rich merchant went on a journey with his two donkeys. On the first he loaded boxes full of money. On the second he loaded heavy sacks of corn. The first donkey was very proud of himself. All the way he kept talking about how important he was because he had been chosen to carry the money.
The second donkey knew perfectly well that it was only because he had been nearer the door at the time, but he said nothing. The first donkey kept on making such a noise that some robbers, hiding in a cave nearby, heard him. They rushed out with their swords and there was a terrific fight.
They cut all the boxes of money off the donkey’s back and, in the process, gave him several nasty cuts. Now he felt very sorry for himself. The second donkey just looked at him. “I think I’m very lucky to be so unimportant,” he said.
Lesson: Be humble. Everyone is important.
30. Bunny Learns to be Smart
Even dim-wits have a few tricks. Bunny the donkey was in the meadow when a wolf leaped from the woods. “I’m too young and handsome to die,” thought Bunny.
As the wolf was about to jump he held up a hoof. “Before you eat me, Mr Wolf,” he said, “you should pull this thorn out of my foot, or you’ll have a bad tummy-ache.” “Good point,” growled the wolf and bent down to look.
Bunny kicked him on the nose as hard as he could, and the wolf ran off howling. “Well done, Bunny,” cried the other donkeys when he got home. “We never thought you could be so smart.”
Lesson: Always look for creative ways to escape difficult situations.
31. The Peacock and the Juno
The peacock was jealous of the nightingale and wanted to sing as well as the latter. When it tries to sing, everyone laughs at it. Disappointed, the peacock approaches Roman goddess Juno and asks for a voice as beautiful as the nightingale’s.
Juno refuses and tells the peacock that just like it is bestowed with beauty, the nightingale is given a beautiful voice, the eagle, strength and so on. Juno says: “Everyone is unique in their own way.”
Lesson: Be content with your strengths; one cannot excel in everything.
32. Tit for tat
Herbie the Heron had just moved in to live near Freddie the Fox. “As he’s a new neighbor, I suppose I’ll have to invite him to dinner,” thought Freddie. “Bother, I don’t really like herons. They’re just big, useless birds. I’ll make sure he doesn’t want to come a second time.”
So when Herbie arrived, feeling quite puckish, Freddie gave him a big plate and poured out some soup. Poor old Herbie pecked and scooped with his long, long beak, but however hard he tried he couldn’t swallow more than a teaspoon’s worth of soup. “Thank you for dinner,” said Herbie politely. “Why don’t you come to my house tomorrow night?”
Freddie ate nothing the next day, leaving plenty of room for what he hoped would be a delicious supper. But when he got to Herbie’s house, he was given a tall narrow vase with a fish at the bottom. However much he stuck his tongue out trying to reach the bottom, he couldn’t get any food at all, while Herbie had seconds. Freddie staggered home weakly, feeling very silly.
Lesson: When you want to do good, do it with a clean heart. There is retribution awaiting.
Henceforth, learn to mesmerize your kids with some great animal stories. Don’t forget, you will also be imprinted in them valuable lessons and morals that will carry them through life. Certainly, anyone of these animal stories has something to teach your kid.
Do you have fellow parents and guardians as friends? Do well to share this article with them.