Image Credits: Images created in Book Brush using Pixabay images. Book cover images from Chapeltown Books.
Some of my favourite childhood books involved animals. Think about Timmy from The Famous Five by Enid Blyton. I suspect he was the most intelligent of the lot of them.
I am an asthmatic, it was worse when I was a child and there was no question then of being able to have a dog of my own. But I could read about them and loved doing so. Ironically now I have no problems with having a dog as a companion and I still love reading. Neither do I mind animal characters as long as they are realistically portrayed.