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Free Benjamin Rabier Animal Illustrations To Print

I normally share scientific natural history animal illustrations on the site. When I stumbled across these charming comic-like animal illustrations of Benjamin Rabier, I knew I had to share them too.

These animal illustrations were originally created by Benjamin Rabier in 1908 for the children’s book “Les Petites Misères de la vie des Animaux”. The title of this French book translates as “The Little Miseries of Animal Life“.

Benjamin Rabier was born in 1864, he was a French comic book artist and illustrator. Rabier’s work inspired other artists such as Herge, the creator of Tintin.  His work has a similar style to that of the British illustrator Cecil Aldin who was also around at the same time.

Rabier’s animal illustrations were groundbreaking, he was one of the first illustrators to specialize in illustrating children’s books.  During his lifetime Benjamin Rebier illustrated over 250 children’s books.

Front cover of Animal Illustrations book

Benjamin Rabier and the Laughing Cow

One of Benjamin Rabiers most famous animal illustrations was not for one of his children’s books, but the laughing cow. The laughing cow is a famous logo for the cheese of the same name.  

In 1924, the owner of the Laughing Cow brand, Léon Bel changed the brand logo. He used a new drawing from Benjamin Rabier, the famous red cow.

This was based on an illustration Rabier had created during the first world war. He had painted a jovial cow on the side of a meat truck for a friend.

This drawing got the nickname Wachkrie; a joke on the German Valkyries trucks and also a play on ‘La Vache Qui rit’ (The Laughing Cow). It caught the eye of the cheese manufacturer Léon Bel and he asked Rabier to recreate the image for his brand.

Benjamin Rabier developed his original drawing of the cow, replacing its brown color with a red coat and a white muzzle. Apparently, Léon Bel’s wife had the idea of making the cow more feminine by adding the now-iconic earrings made from the cheese box itself.

Laughing Cow by Benjamim Rabier

Rabier’s animal illustrations became very popular, as he had a unique talent for taking an animal and humanizing it. 

He gave his creations human expressions and emotions, and he was one of the first illustrators to have animals feature as leading characters within his work.

Long before Disney, Rabier’s charming animal illustrations appeared on merchandise such as pencil-cases, posters and postcards as well as on furniture, as dishware and as toys.

The Animal Illustrations

To download the Benjamin Rabier illustration you want click on the title above that image. A higher resolution image will apear as new window in your browser. If you right click on that image with your mouse you will have the option to save it to your device.

All these wonderful illustrations are in the Public Domain so you are free to print and use them.

1. Two Polar Bears

An animal illustration of two rather cold and miserable looking polar bears.

The French text accompanying this image translates as “We’re going to freeze to death … Forty degrees below zero”.

There are some more wonderful polar bear illustrations here.

Benjamin Rabier Illustration of two polar bears

2. The Lion Who Swallowed A Fisherman

A humorous cartoon of a lion who has just swallowed a fisherman. There is also an elephant in the background.

lion who swallowed a fisherman

3. The Clumsy Hunter

Benjamin Rabier the clumsy hunter

4. The Bear Skin

An ironic drawing of a bear wearing a fur coat.

Benajamin Rabier Animal Illustration The Bear Skin

5. The Frog and the Heron

You can find more heron paintings here and frog illustrations here.

animal illustration of the frog and the heron

6. The Fish

Fish Animal Illustration

7. The Snake and The Apple

Benjamin Rabier animal illustration of a dog and a snake.

Benjamin Rabier animal illustration of a dog and a snake

8. The monkey and the toy

The translated text with this illustration is “It’s delicious and reminds me of my country, that rest at the foot of a palm tree in the shade of the sun“.

The monkey and the toy

9. The Eagle’s Lunch

The Eagle's Lunch

10. The Squirrel

A squirrel on a hamster wheel.

11. The Embarrassed Hippopotamus

The Embarrassed Hippopotamus

12. Zoo Elephant

Elephant animal illustration

13. Giraffe

benajamin Rabier animal illustration giraffe

14. Bear Climbing Tree

Bear in the tree

15. Crocodiles

A fun Benjamin Rabier animal illustration of a pair of crocodiles on the banks of the Nile. You can see the pyramids in the background.

crocodiles on the banks of the Nile

16. The Talking Parrot

The Talking Parrot

17. Pelicans

the pelican

18. The Noisy Farm

Noisy Farm

19. Prickly Life

vintage childrens animal illustrations

20. The Lion Tamer

The Lion Tamer
Vintage Benjamin Rabier Animal Illustrations

If you enjoyed these wonderful Children’s vintage animal illustrations by Benjamin Rabier, then I think you might enjoy these Alice in Wonderland Illustrations, fun vintage circus posters or even the vintage hot air balloon illustrations.


Wednesday 17th of August 2022

Thank you, this are some beautiful art work, are they public domaine?


Friday 19th of August 2022

Thank you, yes they are all in the Public Domain.

Naush Samama

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Lovely artwork. Thank you for sharing with us at Meraki Link Party. Much Love Naush


Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Thank you, yes they are delightful.


Friday 26th of February 2021

Beautiful artwork, thanks for sharing. Following from the Home Matters Link Party.


Saturday 27th of February 2021

Thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed them.

Dorothy Ensz

Wednesday 24th of February 2021

I love these. Thank you so much for sharing. Pinning this post.


Saturday 27th of February 2021

Thank you so much, they are fun images.

Lisa | Handmade in Israel

Tuesday 23rd of February 2021

These are so wonderful! Thank you for sharing them with us.


Tuesday 23rd of February 2021

Thank you so much, I'm glad you enjoyed them.