Before we become adults who love watching adorable animal content on YouTube and TikTok, we were children who loved animal shows wherever and however we could get them. And if history has repeated itself in your home, we’ve found 25 amazing and educational TV
shows for kids who really like animals. And, honestly, in the vast media landscape, it’s really nice to be able to sit your kiddos down in front of the TV with a show that will teach them something and, just maybe, instill a love of nature and the environment.
Animal fun facts never stop being fun. But beyond being educational and informative, between the wildlife documentaries and fun nature shows, the options on this list feature gorgeous footage, dramatic encounters, humor, and real life experiences in a way that are sure to hold your little one’s interest. And, certainly, sometimes nature can be a wee bit scary and not, perhaps, the best idea for sensitive viewers. But nothing on this list goes beyond TV-PG. In fact, unless otherwise noted, all shows are rated TV-Y or TV-G, and appropriate for audiences of all ages. So read on for some ideas to help entertain your little animal lover.
Chris and Martin Kratt and their crack team of scientists travel the world learning about animals and their habitats. With the help of their creature power suits, which gives the brothers special abilities, they help keep their animal friends living free and in the wild.
Watch Wild Kratts on Amazon Prime. Curious George
George is a monkey so, right away, this is a good pick for animal loving kiddos. But since the show focuses on STEAM learning, many episodes explore the habits and habitats of various wild animals!
Watch Curious George on Amazon Prime. Absurd Planet
Yes, nature is amazing, but sometimes it's so weird it's pretty funny. Narrated my “Mother Nature” herself and rated TV-PG, this documentary series takes a look at the bizarre, flat-out-funny side of nature by exploring Mama Earth’s wackiest creatures and their weirdest behaviors.
Stream Absurd Planet on Netflix. United States of Animals
This PG-rated show features the wildest creatures from across the United States and explores how they interact with human citizens of the country.
Stream United States of Animals on Disney+. Rescued!
This series features adorable animals in need of help and the humans who will stop at nothing to make sure they live happy, healthy lives. (I myself required a box of tissues watching just one episode because, OMG, it’s a chihuahua in a rollerblade wheel harness.)
Stream Rescued! on Hulu. Our Planet Huw Cordey / Netflix/Silverback
Gorgeous and exciting footage of the natural world highlights the balance of our incredible planet and all who live here. Bonus: this PG-rated series is narrated by natural historian and marvelous human David Attenborough!
Stream Our Planet on Netflix. Zoboomafoo
At Animal Junction, the Kratt Brothers (yes, they make multiple appearances on this list) and Zoboomafoo (sometimes a talking lemur puppet and sometimes an actual lemur) teach kids about an array of animals and their environments through songs, jokes, and special animal guests.
Watch Zoboomafoo on Amazon Prime. If I Were An Animal
Siblings Emma and Tim discuss which animals they’d like to be by describe the creatures’ features, habitats, and behaviors. Some nature documentaries need a warning for, well, animal behaviors (RIP sick, slow gazelle) but the only warning this show needs is that you might find the various baby animals
too adorable. Stream If I Were An Animal on Netflix. Meet the Chimps
Chimp Haven, a 200-acre refuge in Louisiana, is home to nearly 300 rescued chimpanzees and their offspring. This PG-rated observational documentary follows the lives of a handful, showing the complex emotional lives of some of our closest cousins.
Stream Meet the Chimps on Disney+. Izzy’s Koala World Izzy's Koala World/Netflix
Izzy and her mother, a veterinarian, rescue and release adorable koalas from their home on Magnetic Island. Through the course of the series, Izzy forms a close bond with a new rescue, “Princess Leia.”
Stream Izzy’s Koala World on Netflix. Dogs 101
This PG-rated documentary explores the vast breed variety of man’s best friend. Warning: if you do not have a dog, watching this show will all but guarantee that your children will beg for one for weeks at least.
Watch Dogs 101 (in syndication) on Animal Planet. 72 Cutest Animals
As any parent of a mischievous toddler can tell you, sometimes cuteness is a survival mechanism! And we can learn just how some animals use their big innocent eyes and fluffy tails to their advantage on this feel-good show, rated PG, as we count down to discover the cutest of them all!
Stream 72 Cutest Animals on Netflix. Tiny Creatures
Tiny animal and big drama abound on this exciting PG-rated documentary series that explores the world right underneath our noses.
Stream Tiny Creatures on Netflix. Crikey! It’s the Irwins!
Famed conservationist Steve Irwin's family — Terri, Bindi and Robert — continue his legacy of sharing a love of animals around the world in this series, which gives an inside peek at the Australia Zoo, its animal hospital, and the more than 1,200 animals who live there.
Watch Crikey! It’s the Irwins! on Animal Planet. Best Animal Friends
A monkey who loves a dog?! A rhino who finds her courage thanks to her best friend a goat?! In this production from Dodo Kids, you’ll find all sorts of unlikely and impossibly adorable pairings!
Stream Best Animal Friends on Hulu. Fearless Adventures with Jack Randall
Jack Randall is passionate about sharing animals with the world, even (and especially) the ones many of us find creepy or even scary! This show takes viewers all around the world to explore the variety of nature!
Stream Fearless Adventures with Jack Randall on Disney+. Cats 101
Animal experts and cat owners explore the nuances of various cat breeds in this informative (and very soothing) PG-rated documentary series.
Watch Cats 101 (in syndication) on Animal Planet. Awesome Animals
It’s easy to be amazed by an elephant or a giraffe or a grizzly bear, but this show explores why even natures more common, humble creatures are absolutely amazing! (You’ve all been sleeping on pigeons, seriously.)
Stream Awesome Animals on Disney+. Night on Earth
Stunning night-vision footage captures nocturnal creatures as never before in this exploration of the world after dark. Rated PG.
Stream Night on Earth on Netflix. Nature Cat
In the great wild suburbs of Chicago, Fred is just an ordinary house cat. But when his owners let him roam in the backyard while they're at work, he transforms into the one and only Nature Cat: the feline with a deep love of the Great Outdoors... but absolutely no knowledge of it. Kids learn about the natural world right along with Fred.
Watch Nature Cat on Amazon Prime. Animal Showdown
Perfect for the kid whose natural inclination is to make everything a contest
, Animal Showdown, rated PG, compares the relative features of wildly different creatures to determine which one would win in a competition. Stream Animal Showdown on Disney+. Puffin Rock Adobe After Effects/Netflix
This charming cartoon stars little puffin Oona and her friends, all animals that can be found throughout coastal Ireland in land and sea. Come for the educational animal show, stay for the incredible accents and get ready for your child to pronounce the word “now” and “noy.”
Stream Puffin Rock on Netflix. Magic of Disney’s Animal Kingdom
More than 5,000 animals call Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park home. This PG-rated series gives viewers an all-access pass to their lives, and a chance to get to know the animal care experts who work there.
Stream Magic of Disney’s Animal Kingdom on Disney+. Dodo Heroes
Each episode of this inspiring series shares a unique story of an animal in need of help and the people who will do anything to give it to them, from building prosthetics, to rehabilitating endangered species, to rescuing creatures from circuses.
Stream Dodo Heroes on Hulu. Kratt’s Creatures
A third show featuring the Kratt Brothers but, you know what? When they do what they do as well as they do for as long as they’ve done it, they earn their clout! This show explores animals around the world, habitat by habitat.
Watch Kratt’s Creatures on Amazon Prime.
Happy watching, wild kids!