University of Washington’s Center for Philosophy for Children
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Title and Author: Boodil My Dog by Pija Lindenbaum

Field of Philosophy: Metaphysics; Epistemology

Plot Summary: A child describes Boodil, her family dog, a bull terrier, as "brilliant," "fierce, strong and brave," with "nerves of steel." The drawings in the story, however, paint a different picture, as Boodil is shown, among other things, moving very slowly, avoiding puddles, quivering under the couch, and crashing into the narrator's baby brother.

Some discussion questions:

How do we know what we know?
Do our perceptions lead to knowledge?
Should be believe what other people tell us? If we do, does this mean we know those things?
When should we believe what other people tell us?
Do animals have minds?
Do animals have thoughts?
Can you be friends with an animal?