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Children's Fiction Farm Animals

Chicken, Pig, Cow

by (author) Ruth Ohi

Annick Press
Initial publish date
Sep 2008
Farm Animals, Cows, Pigs
Recommended Age
4 to 7
Recommended Grade
k to 2
Recommended Reading age
4 to 7
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2008
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2008
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Download Teacher’s Guide

Download Teacher’s Guide

Where to buy it


Pig, Chicken and Cow love the warm and cozy barn Girl made for them out of Popsicle® sticks. Even though Girl forgot to make a door, the three toy animals think their home is perfect. The only thing that isn’t perfect is Dog. He lives outside, but his drool makes it feel as if it’s raining in the barn.

One day, Pig and Chicken decide to go exploring, leaving Cow behind. Before long, Cow hears a drooly, snorty sort of sound, followed by a crash as the barn tips over. Dog is very big, and Cow is terrified—but she really has nothing to fear. All Dog wants to do is play, as Pig and Chicken discover during a daring rescue. Dog becomes a friend. Best of all, now that two sticks have been knocked free, their barn is indeed perfect—front door and all.

With her trademark economy of words and expressive characters, Ruth Ohi has created a refreshing, toddler-friendly story about making friends. 

About the author



Ruth Ohi a illustré plus de 50 livres pour enfants et est l'auteure de certains d'entre eux. Ses livres, traduits en plusieurs langues, se vendent à travers le monde et ont figuré sur la liste de plusieurs prix littéraires prestigieux. Elle vit avec sa famille à Toronto.


RUTH OHI has illustrated more than fifty children’s books — several of which she has also written, including Fox and Squirrel, Fox and Squirrel Make a Friend, Shh! My Brother’s Napping, and Scribble. Her books have been nominated for many prestigious awards, including the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award, Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Award, Mr. Christie’s Award, Chocolate Lily, Shining Willow, Blue Spruce and the Governor General’s Award. She lives with her family, and many backyard squirrels, in Toronto, Ontario. Visit her online at

Ruth Ohi's profile page

Editorial Reviews

“A subtle blend of illustration and text which will not only appeal to [Ohi’s] young audience, but also demonstrates for their parents, her delicate, and often very funny, link between text and illustration”

Deakin Newsletter, 11/08

“A simple but heartwarming story about friendship and courage that will entertain and inspire young children. Highly recommended.”

CM Reviews, 11/08

“Definitely recommended for story time . . . will be a hit with librarians, teachers and preschoolers everywhere.”

Resource Links, 12/08

“The simple text and expressive watercolors . . . are perfect for sharing with a group.”

School Library Journal, 12/08

“Profound in its simplicity, this story has it all.”

Canadian Children’s Book News, 10/08

Librarian Reviews

Chicken, Pig, Cow

This quintessential picture book by longtime writer and illustrator Ruth Ohi is about creating, playing and the power of imagination. Girl is the creator of little clay animals, who live in a doorless Popsicle-stick barn. Sometimes Girl plays with the toys; that is when they have a chance to be outside of their box. But when Girl is not there, the toy animals come alive. As we turn the pages of the book, the reader embarks on an imaginary adventure with the clearly created characters of Chicken, Pig and Cow, who want to go beyond their set boundaries. But wait, outside there is also Dog, no doubt a real character in the life of the creator (Girl). Dog is drooly, playful, big and… unpredictable. How will the little clay animals fare in the face of danger (Dog)?

The ability to engage in an adventure with toys is a theme well known in children’s literature. Ruth Ohi offers a fresh approach, in the angle of the illustrations, the perspective of the composition, the way in which the child in the book and the child-reader become one as the story unfolds. Simple language and a straightforward narrative make this story very appealing to a young child. Profound in its simplicity, this story has it all: a dab of magic, a spirit of adventure, suspense, resolution and a comforting and satisfying end.

Source: The Canadian Children's Bookcentre. Fall 2008. Vol.31 No.4.

Chicken, Pig, Cow (A Ruth Ohi Picture Book)

Cow is left home alone when Chicken and Pig go off exploring. She becomes terrified when she meets drooly Dog. On their daring rescue of Cow, Pig and Chicken befriend Dog when they learn that he just wants to play. Watercolour illustrations accompany this adorable tale of friendship.

Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Best Books for Kids & Teens. 2009.

Other titles by Ruth Ohi