Lucy is very keen to have a pet dog of her own. When she sets off to find one, she meets a frog and a fox and weighs up the pros and cons of having one of them as a pet instead. Meanwhile Bear has been listening closely and is keen to become Lucy’s pet dog himself despite not really qualifying for the role! He convinces Lucy that he is a newly invented breed of dog and soon Bear settles into his new home happily. Trouble begins when Bear has a sleep, in Lucy’s bed, which lasts the whole winter and both pet and owner become more and more irritated with each other. Unable to bear it any longer Bear runs away. But it is not long before he finds he is missing home and more than anything missing Lucy who, predictably, is missing him too. A happy reunion follows.
A nicely structured simple story about cooperation, compromise and caring. Page design, minimal illustrations, varied font and clever use of white space create a fresh and appealing feel. Children will enjoy spotting the bear as he follows Lucy in the early spreads. There is humour in the story with fox wanting to be a pet on a ‘part time’ basis, reference to well-known fictional bears with Lucy’s frustration about the endless bowls of porridge and Bear’s confusion at his owner’s strange obsession with throwing her ball away and expecting him to retrieve it.