Happiness Is a Warm Puppy Book Review: What Happiness Is About

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Have you ever wondered what happiness is?Happiness-Is-a-Warm-Puppy-book-cover

I’m sure you have. And you may have noticed that each person has their own answer for what happiness is about.

There is a book I first read when I was a boy that makes me happy whenever I read it. It’s “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy“ by Charles M. Schulz. It’s a Peanuts book that contains a series of “Happiness is …” statements accompanied by Schulz’s illustrations of Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Linus, Lucy, Sally, Schroeder, and other Peanuts characters.

In “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy,” Schulz shows that happiness is available wherever you look for it. Happiness is everywhere. I will quote some of the “Happiness is …” statements from the book in the following sections as I present my book review of “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy” and see what happiness is about…

“Happiness Is an Umbrella and a New Raincoat.”

Happiness doesn’t have to be something complex. It can in fact be very simple.

Perhaps you get happy when it rains and you have an opportunity to use an umbrella and a new raincoat. You might be happy about being prepared — even if you never were a boy scout. Or you might simply enjoy going for a walk in the rain without getting wet.

“Happiness is an umbrella and a new raincoat” is a simple statement, but it and other statements in the book offer multiple angles for exploring why you’re happy.

You can find happiness in the simple things of life. Especially in the simple things. Schulz did well to remind us of that.

“Happiness Is a Pile of Leaves.”

In “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy,” Schulz reminds the reader of the pleasures of life that we were a lot more aware of when we were children. The book is a master class in gratitude. It’s a short book, one that will take you less time to read than it will take to read this review, but it packs so much into its pages. I experience happiness every time I read it. I’m grateful for the book, and it is an excellent tool that can help you take a deep dive in gratitude.

The more grateful you are, the happier you are. I’ve come to that realization from reading “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy” and from looking at the pictures that emphasize the various happiness statements.

When I was a boy, I used to jump into piles of leaves. I saw it as a reward for raking the leaves. I got to lie in the piles of leaves before putting the leaves into big bags.

I was more aware back then of the simple pleasures of life. Thankfully, I’ve been regaining some of that awareness. I am truly blessed.

“Happiness Is Sleeping in Your Own Bed.”

Schulz kept making such accurate statements throughout the book. Try it for yourself. Fill in the blank: “Happiness is ____________________________.”

What did you put there?

Bet you can’t stop at one happiness statement. Once you get started, it’s natural to keep going.

I agree that “Happiness is sleeping in your own bed.” I have experienced that countless times throughout my life. It’s a feeling unique to that situation. I’ve had many beds, a wide variety, and I still end up with that feeling. It’s wonderful. It’s a feeling of being at home that I’ve looked forward to and been pleased with discovering all over again. Year after year. Decade after decade.

How about you? Have you been identifying with any of these happiness statements so far?

“Happiness Is Getting Together with Your Friends.”

In the picture that goes with this happiness statement, Snoopy is on top of his doghouse with four of his friends. And the smile that he has! It’s so heartwarming that I end up smiling, too, on the inside and on the outside.

Think back to when you’ve spent time with your friends. Maybe you’ve had some moments where you appreciate what you have together and you smile as you’re grateful for the connections that you have with your friends.

Those are magical moments. Treasure them. You are wealthy. Wealth is more than your finances. It’s more than your health. It’s your relationships, too.

Happiness is knowing that you have each other’s backs. Happiness is sharing laughter together and supporting each other. Happiness is being aware of the riches that you already have.

“Happiness Is Everything.”

“I just want to be happy.” You’ve probably heard someone say that before. You’ve probably said it, too.

Much has been said about happiness. And much has been written about it. What is happiness about? Is it a feeling? Is it a state of mind? Is it expressed in these happiness statements that are in “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy”?

Yes, to all of those questions. Happiness is all of those things and so much more. It is also something to be shared. And sharing helps it multiply exponentially.

“Happiness is everything” is the final statement in the book. So final that it’s on the back cover. Schulz sums up the book and all of life with that final statement.


“Happiness Is a Warm Puppy” is a worthy addition to your personal library. It’s a book of wisdom disguised as a children’s book. Don’t let the fact that you can probably read it in 5 minutes or less fool you. It may be short, but it’s got a lot of substance.Happiness-Is-a-Warm-Puppy-book-cover

I had the physical book when I was a boy. Now I’ve got the Kindle edition, so I can have it with me wherever I go. The book serves as a reminder that happiness can be found anywhere. As long as you’re prepared to see it.

Click here to buy “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy” and take a deep dive into gratitude. Happiness is all around you.

What are some of your favorite “Happiness is …” statements from the book? And what are some of your favorite “Happiness is …” statements that you’ve come up with on your own?

I’d like to hear from you. Spread the happiness.

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Until next time,

James Barnett

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7 thoughts on “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy Book Review: What Happiness Is About”

  1. I really love this one, James. I read it to Chuck, and he enjoyed it also. Something simple I find happiness in is the appreciation of a warm blanket. So comforting. Happiness is being with my granddaughter! I’ll be buying this book for her ☺️ You are gifted in writing… Thank you for sharing.

    1. Hi Juliette, speaking of a warm blanket, “Happiness Is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown” is the name of the Peanuts animated TV special from 2011. If you’d like, you can watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmFjyK41DaI

      Your granddaughter ought to enjoy the book. She might also enjoy the TV special.

      Thank you for enjoying the post. It was fun to write. Thank you for sharing the post with Chuck, too.

  2. My sister had this book. She was a big fan of Charlie Brown.

    It is good and important to remember to be young at heart always and find happy things in life. Always look for joy and spread sunshine to others.

    “Gray skies are going to clear up. Put on a happy face. And spread sunshine all over the place. Just put on a happy face.”

    1. I agree, Maisie. Sometimes I think of the song “Young at Heart” and sing it, too. The version I think of is the one by Jimmy Durante.

      I remember when the “Put on a happy face” song was in various Wal Mart commercials, accompanied by whistling. The smiley face bounced around and rolled back prices all over the store.

      I read so many of the Charlie Brown books when I was a boy. And I remember specifically the daily strip where Sally provided 2 pictures for her class instead of a 2,000 word report since a picture is worth 1,000 words. You can read the strip here: https://www.gocomics.com/peanuts/1979/05/18

        1. My sister’s copy is really old. Maybe you have a newer version.

          “Happiness is a thumb and a blanket.” That was my niece when she was a little girl.
          “Happiness is a warm puppy.” For me as a cat lover, Happiness is a cat.
          “Happiness is an “A” on your spelling test.” I was always a very good speller in school. I love words, loved English class, love reading.
          “Happiness is three friends in a sandbox … with no fighting.” My brother and I had a sandbox when we were young. I loved playing in there. Neighbour kids did also. There was no fighting.

          Happiness is: going to the movie theatre. Being in nature, especially with water of some kind. Good food. Being with good friends, including family. Music. My TV shows. Etc.

          Thanks for posting such a happy subject.

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