Recommended Books and Resources
There is a wealth of wonderful information available to help dog owners learn more about their dogs. Taking a little time to educate yourself will pay off hugely, whether you are just now planning to get a dog or you already have one. With the help of books, internet sources and knowledgeable advice, you can select the perfect breed of dog for your lifestyle, learn how to solve behavior issues, and find fun new sports to play with your dog.
The following selections are the ones I have found most useful and available; they are not by any means the only ones. Use your own good judgment, and especially on the internet, a liberal does of salt may be in order!
The Culture Clash by Jean Donaldson. The number one pick of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers, and for good reason: it is a wonderfully written, nuts-and-bolts approach to how dogs learn and how to train them. More on theory, less of a how-to, but if you read only one book, this is the one!
The Power of Positive Dog Training by Pat Miller. A terrific companion book to The Culture Clash, Pat Miller's book focuses on the how-to, with clear, concrete exercises arranged in a week-by-week plan. If you plan to train your puppy yourself, this is a great place to start.
The Other End of the Leash by Patricia McConnell, Ph.D. An absolutely wonderful look at how our genetic baggage as primates conflicts with the canine world-view of our dogs. More theory and ethology than how-to, but it's loaded with gems of practical wisdom for improving our relationships with our dogs. Dr. McConnell is one of the nation's top aggression specialists, and a fine writer to boot. Highly recommended. Also visit her amazing blog at her website: www.patriciamcconnell.com
Bones Would Rain from the Sky by Suzanne Clothier. Heartfelt, beautifully written and deeply thoughtful look at the core issues of our relationships with our dogs--trust, leadership, communication, bonding. Less a book about how to train than about why to train, what it means, and achieving more than just obedience by putting the heart connection first. Worth reading, and worth thinking about.
Before & After You Get Your Puppy by Dr. Ian Dunbar. The master of positive puppy training strikes again with this brilliant how-to manual for everything puppy! If you're even thinking about getting a puppy, make your life easy and read these booklets first. They are available for FREE as pdf downloads at www.dogstardaily.com.