My recommended reading list for new dog or puppy owners:

The Other End of the Leash - Patricia McConnell
The Culture Clash - Jean Donaldson

Parenting Your Dog - Trish King
The Power of Positive Dog Training - Pat Miller
How to Behave So Your Dog Behaves - Sophia Yin

If you read those 5 books, you'll know more than 95% of dog owners, and more than most traditional dog trainers, as well!



(Patricia B. McConnell, PhD.) This book is a MUST HAVE for all dog owners. Learn how dogs communicate, and what motivates them, to get the best out of your relationship. " When humans communicate with dogs, a lot can get lost in the translation. Focusing on human behavior, Dr. McConnell teaches readers how to retrain themselves to speak consistently in a language dogs understand and avoid sending conflicting and confusing messages. "


(Patricia B. McConnell, PhD.) "As behaviorist and zoologist Dr. Patricia McConnell tells us in this remarkable new book about emotions in dogs and in people, more and more scientists accept the premise that dogs have rich emotional lives, exhibiting a wide range of feelings that includes fear, anger, surprise, sadness, and love."


(Suzanne Clothier) "If you started life as a child who loved dogs more than anything else in the world and grew to an adult with the same love, then this new book by Suzanne Clothier belongs at the top of your list! Suzanne talks about her childhood with dogs and her relationship with them, and the differences between training and having a real relationship with your dog. She talks about specific dogs and situations, what she learned from them, and how they have changed her attitude towards dogs and towards training. The dogs you'll meet and the lessons they teach may make you want to start over with your dogs and develop a better relationship. At the very least you will come away from this special book with a different attitude towards your canine companions and a new understanding of training and relationships."


(Jean Donaldson) 2nd ed. "Get rid of your dogs-are-like-humans thinking and learn to appreciate the TRUE strengths and abilities of your canine companions. Find out what really makes a dog tick, what motivates him and how to get the behavior you are looking for!"
(Emma Parsons) " More than 40 exercises in an easy-to-follow training recipe format, including how to desensitize your dog to approaching stranger dogs; have your dog perform canine calming signals, instead of aggressive displays, on cue; use your own body language when under stress as a cue for your dog to remain calm; and many more creative and effective uses of managing behavior through clicker training."

"Candid answers to urgent questions about aggression and other aspects of dog behavior, from the author of best seller, Culture Clash. Includes case histories and guidelines for dealing with: aggression toward strangers; resource guarding; dog-dog aggression; behavior problems such as counter surfing, barking, mouthiness during play, mounting, stool eating; obedience problems such as off leash control, stay breaking, recall off distractions, pulling; and fear and anxiety problems. Uses positive reinforcement methods: clickers, food treats, praise, and recommends Gentle Leader in certain cases."
Nicholas Dodman, B.V.M.S., M.R.C.V.S, is a professor of behavioral pharmacology at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine and director of the Behavior Clinic. (You can contact them yourself through PETFAX with your pet's behavioral problems.) Dr. Dodman uses primarily positive approaches to solving behavioral problems, using training, diet, exercise, environment, and drugs. Even animals can benefit from medications developed for helping people cope with anxieties, phobias, and other behavioral issues

(Nicholas Dodman) More great info. " Tackles common behavior problems and presents simple, sensible instructions on diet, exercise, environment and lifestyle changes any pet owner can safely do to change behavior. Extensive appendix."
(Nicholas Dodman) And more of the same!
(Trish King) This is a great book whether you're bringing home a new puppy, adolescent, or adult dog. She gives her advice by comparing and contrasting raising a child and raising a puppy. (For example, babies sleep in cribs for their safety, we put puppies in crates for their safety as well.)

(Dr. Ian Dunbar) "Outlines everything you need to know to select the right puppy, as well as all the crucial lessons a puppy must be taught during its impressionable early development. In clear steps, with helpful photos and sidebars, Dr. Dunbar presents a structured yet playful plan built around six critical developmental deadlines: 1. Completing your education about puppy education 2. Evaluating your prospective puppy's socialization & training 3. Errorless housetraining and chewtoy-training 4. Socializing with new people 5. Learning reliable bite inhibition 6. Preventing predictable adolescent problems." Personally, I think he gets extreme in some of his view points, but it's still a good read.
(Sheila Webster Boneham) *Award Winner, Dog Writer's Assn. of America, 2002, General Reference Book. Facts on different breeds, advice on training techniques, and tips on grooming, plus in-depth information on choosing an obedience school and a veterinarian, quick and easy strategies for dealing with problem behaviors, tips on adopting a homeless dog from a shelter, commonsense tactics for dealing with common canine health problems, and valuable insights into what to expect at every stage of your dog's life. (Please Note: If you want to donate to a health or rescue program with your purchase, click here.

(Karen Pryor) This is the first book I read by Karen Pryor. What do dolphins have to do with dog training? Everything! This book chronicles Pryor's early experiences as a dolphin trainer at a new oceanarium in Hawaii. What she learned there became the beginning of 'clicker training' as we know it today, which is now used around the world to positively train animals of all sorts. This book teaches the foundation of clicker training in a fun, easy to read manner. You don't have to be an animal lover to enjoy this book!
(Karen Pryor) I read 'Lads Before the Wind' as a teenager. The second book that I read by Pryor was 'Breastfeeding Your Baby'. (I had no idea they were by the same author, but her sense of humor should have given her away!). This is the third of her books. It takes everything she had learned in Lads Before the Wind, refines it, and applies it not only to animals, but to humans as well. This book is required reading in some colleges!

(Sophia Yin) "Dr. Sophia Yin, a respected applied animal behaviorist, provides an in-depth approach to not only understanding dogs, but also understanding how to effectively communicate with them. Exercises for training and problem solving are broken down into short, easy-to-read sections, and friendly, instructional illustrations enhance the techniques."

(Melissa Alexander) If you ever have a question about dog training or behavior, you can ask the experts on the clickersolutions email list. Top trainers from around the world will answer your questions. If you don't have the time, buy this book, written by the founder of the email list, which includes experiences from pet owners on the list! " *Won the Dog Writer's Association of America's Award, Best Training & Behavior Book of 2003! Clear and accurate answers for over one hundred commonly asked questions about clicker training in one essential reference. Packed with information experienced trainers and newcomers alike can put to use immediately."

(Peggy Tillman) "The answer for all pet owners who want a dog to be a real partner and friend. Step-by-step illustrations explain the clicking process more clearly than ever before. Here's the pet-friendly way to teach your dog good manners and great tricks - without punishment or force." (Written by another great trainer on the clickersolutions list.)
(Pamela Dennison) Don't let the title fool you! This is another great book by a clickersolutions subscriber, Pamela Dennison. This is a well-written, easy to read book." Fascinating insights into how dogs learn and communicate, proven pointers for training without punishment, and expert tips for incorporating training into your daily routine." Plus, it has aussies on the cover, so it must be great! ;-)
(Pat Miller) "Demonstrates how you can train your dog, have fun, and build a lasting relationship at the same time. Walk away from punishment-based training methods and learn how you can reward your dog to obtain and reinforce the behaviors you could only dream about achieving. When you apply the training methods in this book and follow the unique six-week training program, your dog will learn to think and to choose proper behavior. You and your dog can become an unbeatable team, capable of addressing any challenge you may encounter." I use this book as the foundation for my training classes, with great success.
(Pat Miller) Originally written as stand alone articles in magazines such as the Whole Dog Journal, these articles have been modified and combined into a fantastic book. A great training book.

(Diane Peters Mayer, M.S.W) Always wanted to compete with your dog, but can't get over the jitters? "Whether you’re new to dog sports or an experienced dog handler, it’s quite common to experience mild to severe performance anxiety during competition. Now, with Conquering Ring Nerves, you can face and overcome your anxiety through an easy-to-follow, successful program. No matter what’s going on inside or outside the ring, Diane Peters Mayer shows you how to calm yourself, stay focused, boost your self-esteem, and give a blue-ribbon performance. She uses a multidimensional approach developed during her years as a psychotherapist and anxiety specialist, complete with exercises and techniques adapted from such areas as sports psychology, yoga, and physical fitness."

(Karen Pryor) You don't have to pose your dog like a 'Gumby' to get him to stack correctly. With clicker training, you can train your dog to extend its gait in the ring, stand with confidence on the table, gait on a loose lead, self-stack perfectly, look alert and calm while the judge reviews the rest of the class, and much more.

(Morgan Spector) "Step-by-step guide to applying the new science of clicker training to the demands of obedience performance, from novice through utility. You'll get specific instructions, including footwork diagrams and training plans, for developing extreme precision and reliability in dog and handler, through shaping and positive reinforcement. Spector emphasizes the behavioral concept of building basic skills, from puppyhood onward so that the dog is prepared for each exercise even before advanced work begins. This detailed and thorough book, written by an attorney who is also an obedience competitor and instructor, may change your entire approach to obedience training."
(Kim Collins) This book "will help you build a working relationship with your dog that will carry you through the joys and challenges of competing in agility. Stressing a rock solid foundation of understanding for both dog and handler, this book contains a motivational and thorough approach to training agility that will hold strong in the ring."
(Scott Lithgow) "From Australia, our most popular book on stock dog training! Features the Australian Cattle Dog. Contents include: Selecting a dog (breed characteristics), how to assess working ability, summary of puppy-rearing procedures, fundamentals of training (psychology, directional signals), training methods, working with cattle, correcting faults, working with two dogs, working with dogs. Now every owner of a new pup can train it with confidence and produce an obedient, responsive and alert dog. Although designed mainly for those who use dogs to muster cattle, the patient and understanding approach is equally effective for dogs reared to handle other stock, and for dogs kept as pets."
"Takes the participant through all phases of training including many of the common difficulties encountered. Prepares the tracker for T. D. and T.D.X. tests. This is one of the best books we have for training AKC tracking. Easy to read and follow - it works!"

This is the DVD I provide all of my puppy families. It's a must have for learning clicker training, and helps one to understand basic puppy behavior. It shows children learning clicker training, and then teaching puppies. It even teaches a game that helps the trainer know what it's like to be the 'trainee'. Loads of fun for everyone!
Train Your Dog, by Nicole Wilde




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The Whole Dog Journal - This magazine is a must have! WDJ doesn't allow advertising, so they have editorial freedom to say what they want. They promote holistic health care and positive dog training. Each year they review dog foods and new products. Their monthly training articles by Pat Miller alone are worth the subscription cost.
Dogs Naturally Magazine - We're not only the most complete source of natural health care for dogs, but a large community of caring vets, breeders, trainers and dog owners who want to bring out the best in our dogs.