Yukon Sled Dog

Common Sense Media says

Simple, upbeat story about training Alaskan sled dogs.





What parents need to know

Educational value

Yukon Sled Dog teaches kids about the training, feeding, and care of Alaskan sled dogs. At the end of the book there's more information about how these animals evolved from work dogs to sled dogs and how to provide them with proper nutrition.

Positive messages

Yukon Sled Dog depicts its canine athletes as well-trained, well-cared-for individuals who enjoy competition.

Positive role models

Caring trainer Roberta is attentive to her dogs' health and well-being and responsive to their needs. The animals work hard.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Yukon Sled Dog portrays training dogs for an Alaskan race as a positive, fun experience, and there's no violence or injury in its upbeat treatment. Some adults and children may find this at odds with their own views about animal welfare and wish to discuss these concerns as part of the reading.

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What's the story?

Puppy Yukon is the only girl in a new litter of boys, and her trainer, Roberta, thinks she just might have what it takes to compete in the big dogsled race. But first she'll have to train for two years, learning commands, getting stronger, and working with her teammates.

Is it any good?


Simple, upbeat, and informative, YUKON SLED DOG shows the development and training of an Alaskan dog from birth to race time. Bright, digitally colored pencil illustrations make the crisp, snowy landscape pop.

Kids who like animals will enjoy this coming-of-age tale of a special pup, and readers of all ages will pick up interesting information about the ways of "mushers." Focused on the positive, the book tells only of well-treated dogs and doesn't address potential issues of animal welfare.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the special relationship between people and dogs. Why do you think it's such a popular subject for stories? Are there any other dog stories you like? How are the dogs in these stories similar to Yukon and her brothers? How are they different?

  • Have you seen animals who have a special job, such as pulling a sled or helping people? What did they do?

  • How do Yukon, her brothers, and Roberta learn to work as a team?

Book details

Author:Judith Janda Presnall
Illustrator:Mark Elliott
Genre:Picture Book
Topics:Cats, dogs, and mice
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Two Lions
Publication date:October 8, 2013
Number of pages:32
Publisher's recommended age(s):6 - 8
Read aloud:6 - 8
Read alone:6 - 8
Available on:Hardback, Kindle

This review of Yukon Sled Dog was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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