Just like every child develops a favorite color at some point, he or she probably picks up a preferred animal along the way as well. Tapping into that animal instinct is an easy way to figure out the ideal birthday present. Younger children may take a cue from the family pet, which probably means picking up a dog- or cat-themed book or toy. Dollar stores and toy outlets usually carry bags of miniature farm animals, sea creatures or dinosaurs, which can be a hit. If an older kid is fond of a particular animal, a poster, set of stickers, notebook or T-shirt bearing its image can fit the bill. Last but not least, stuffed animals are also delightful gifts that kids keep around for years.