This cute kid's book about animals is completely horrifying

PETA hides a frightening message in a deceptively charming package

Published On
Nov 20, 2019

Editor's Pick

With cuddly animals, soft pastel colors and sound effect buttons, “The Secret Lives of Animals” appears to the perfect bedtime book for kids. But beware, it’s most certainly NOT to be judged by its cover. Nestled within its pages are actually horrifying cautionary tales that could give adults and children alike nightmares.

Each spread of the book features a grim nursery rhyme-like poem telling stories of animal cruelty, including one about a dolphin stuck in captivity, geese hung upside down and plucked for their down, three mice made blind from product-testing. Buttons on the side enhance the stories further, with disturbing sounds of real-life animal screams, squeals and shrieks.


The book is a new offering from PETA created out of The Community. Just in time for Black Friday, the organization will be selling “The Secret Lives of Animals” on its website—a stocking stuffer, of sorts, for the “kid inside you,” the prologue reads. “The one who thought that dolphins loved living in quariums, that the lions at the zoo were happy in their cages, that cows pranced joyfully on prairies … that pigs only feared the big bad wolf. “It seems funny now, doesn’t it, to think you were that innocent? This book is also for you, as an adult. It’s time to see how animals really live and to do something about it. To make that world you saw as a kid, a reality.”

An online version of the book can be read online here.