Nurtured and Nuzzled: A new children’s book on nursing
A few years ago, we shared our list of children's books on breastfeeding. At the time, we noted that for many years there were few children’s books that portrayed breastfeeding but happily, that number has recently grown.
Today we are pleased to share a new addition to that list: Nurtured and Nuzzled. It's a rhyming bilingual (English/Spanish) children's book that shows how different mammal species care for their young – grooming, cuddling, sheltering, and nursing them – including a page showing both a polar bear mother and a human mother breastfeeding their babies.
The message: nursing is normal and the way mammals of all species care for their young.
This is a sweet book that will undoubtedly appeal to younger children, but may also be of interest to older kids. Between the tender images of animal mothers caring for their young and the clear message that breastfeeding is a normal and natural way to feed and care for our children, it's a book we're delighted to recommend.
The publisher of this book has created a teacher's guide to accompany it. Among the different activities in the guide are some great facts about how mammals feed their young – facts we know kids will love:
- Whales need to preserve their sleek, hydrodynamically efficient shape. The mother’s milk glands are below her thick blubber layer. This interior location also protects the milk from the cold. The baby nudges the area and milk – thick as cream – spurts out. A baby pacific gray whale can drink 80 gallons of breastmilk a day.
- Orangutans breast-feed, ride on their mother's body, and sleep on her chest for seven years – among the longest nursing of any mammal. The young stay with their mothers at least until a new baby arrives. The males then begin to wander off, but the females may stay around for a while observing how babies are cared for. They are accomplished acrobats, often nursing upside down or hanging by a hand and a foot from a branch.
- The female duck-billed platypus breast feeds without benefit of a breast or a nipple. The mammary glands rest underneath the mother's chest. The youngster pushes against the chest wall with his soft, pliable bill, then licks the oozing milk off his mother's skin and hair.
For more fun mammal facts, check out If My Mom Were a Platypus, by the same author!