You have your dog, now you have the fun of buying for him. My favourite is dog books. The second is collars. For one of my dogs I had different colours of collars for him so that when I entered obedience trials his collar would match my shirt. My friend has a neat collar that she found at a dog show that is beaded. Then there are leashes, brushes, nail clippers, dog shampoo . . .
The Doggie Bookstore
I have always wanted to have a doggie book store filled with my favourite dog books. It may never happen, but here is my best substitute, a virtual bookstore. These are some favourite dog books linked to Amazon.ca for your convenience.
If you have books you would like to recommend e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I did a search for dog training at Amazon.ca and 289 books came up. I suspect all of them would have a perspective to add on how to train your dog. There are some authors, though, that I think deserve some extra attention. I like John Rogerson's perspective on dogs and dog training, his books are not currently available at Amazon, but I have found them at public libraries. The Volhards have been in the business for a long time and both spouses have written dog books. One you could check out is What All Good Dogs Should Know by Jack Volhard and Melissa Bartlett.
The best time to start training your dog is as a puppy. A good book to consider if you are bringing a puppy into the household is How to Raise a Puppy You Can Live With . Last I heard David Neil, one of the authors, lives right here in Alberta.
If you have heard about clicker training and you are curious, check out: Don't Shoot the Dog!. Karen Pryor does a great job on explaining psychological principles learned by researchers and relating them to the real world in this book. I believe it was Karen Pryor's enthusiasm for operant conditioning which started the clicker training movement. Now you are probably wondering what operant conditioning has to do with clicker training, read Don't Shoot the Dog! and find out.
A great deal of my time is spent training my dogs for the Canadian Kennel Club's Obedience trials. When I started competitive obedience was all done with choke collars and corrections. The classic book on this type of training is The Koehler Method of Dog Training by William Koehler. Even though this style of training is not popular any more, there are still things you can learn from his books. I am not sure where you could buy a new copy of this book, you might be able to get a copy from the library, e-bay or a second-hand shop.
Diane Bauman's "Beyond Basic Dog Training" changed my persective on training competitive dog obedience. I would never give up my copy of it. It is not available through Amazon, but you can get her Beyond Basic Dog Training Workbook.
Recently my friend got me reading So Your Dog's Not Lassie: Tips for Training Difficult Dogs and Independent Breeds . Although it is a general type of dog training book, it also focuses in on obedience trials. I don't think you have to have an independent breed to find this book interesting. If you are training your first competitive obedience dog you would find this book useful.
I did a search for dog tricks and thirteen books came up. I am not familiar with any of them but How to Teach Your Dog to Talk (and Other Tricks): 125 Tricks Guaranteed to Entertain Both you and your Pet. by Captain Haggerty got good reviews at the Amazon.ca site.
I am learning dog agility and I decided to take the plunge and buy two dog agility books by Jane Simmons-Moak. She has three for sale at Amazon.ca in her Excelling at Dog Agility series. The first is Obstacle Training which covers training the basic obstacles. The second and third are Sequence Training and Advanced Skills Training and these two purchased it. I am working with her ideas on speeding up weave poles in her third book and they seem to work quite well. That is as far as I have gotten, but there are other ideas I am excited to try.
Understanding your dog's behaviour helps in order to solve dog problems. Fortunately there are lots of authors out there who are happy to let us know why dogs do what they do. One book I have heard good things about is Jean Donaldson's Culture Clash. I liked Nicholas Dodman's The Dog Who Loved Too Much:. I thought he had an excellent insight into dog aggression. Mr. Dodman has written other books since then, but I have not had the opportunity to read them.
Whether you agree with Stanley Coren or not, at least he is interesting. One book of his is How to Speak Dog: Mastering the Art of Dog-Human Communication. and would probably be a fun read.
Fiction or Almost Fiction
When I discovered Susan Conant mysteries I was in love. As a dog show fan it is neat to find books that feature the dog show world. Here are a couple of her books: Dead and Doggone, Paws Before Dying.
Knowing my interest in the Susan Conant mysteries, my friend Linda got me going on the Melanie Travis mysteries by Laurien Berenson, They are part mystery and part soap opera. The heroin has a Standard Poodle and a son about the same age as mine which makes them a lot of fun. Here is a link to the first book in the series Pedigree to Die for.
Another favourite doggie author I have is Gary Paulsen. His story of running the Iditarod in Winterdance makes me think he is completely crazy or else he never quite grew up. My seven year old son recently enjoyed My Life in Dog Years also by Gary Paulsen.
Tess Crebbin e-mailed me and recommended Two Dogs and a Journalist: A British.... Of course she might be biased because she is the author, but I think the book looks interesting.
Copyright 2002, Marlene Parish