Dog book recommendations
November 18, 2019 7:22 PM   Subscribe

You read dog books. I just got a dog. I have a public library. What ONE nonfiction dog behaviour and/or training book would you most recommend for me?

It's a papillon mutt. Definitely a smart, energetic, pre-trained dog.
posted by aniola to Pets & Animals (10 answers total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: For broad primate versus canid perspectives: The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs by Patricia McConnell.
posted by readinghippo at 8:25 PM on November 18, 2019 [7 favorites]

Came to say exactly what readinghippo said! I would also add How to Speak Dog, by Stanley Coren.
posted by PlantGoddess at 9:40 PM on November 18, 2019

Also came here to recommend Patricia McConnell.
posted by valannc at 10:25 PM on November 18, 2019

Alexandra Horowitz, Inside of a Dog
posted by Morpeth at 5:14 AM on November 19, 2019

Also came to recommend McConnell (though I quite like Horowitz's book, too, I think it's a little less practical for your purposes - it's more about dog psychology than training steps.)
posted by mosst at 5:51 AM on November 19, 2019

Don’t shoot the dog — Karen Pryor — as it turns out, not strictly about dog training, in the sense that the material can be applied in many other situations too!
posted by =d.b= at 6:21 AM on November 19, 2019 [4 favorites]

Seconding Don't shoot the dog and The other end of the leash. If you want another one to add to your future reading list, 101 dog tricks is a fun one to have for a smart dog once you teach all the tricks you can think of on your own.

(there are tons of dog behaviour/training resources online as well - e.g. Zac George and Kikopup on youtube are great)
posted by randomnity at 6:57 AM on November 19, 2019

Best answer: "Canine Body Language" by Brenda Aloff is an absolutely essential book even for people who think they understand dogs. It's got thousands of photographs of dogs, examples of different expressions and behaviours, with clear explanations of what that means in terms of the dog's state of mind. I thought I was pretty sharp with knowing all the different signals, but I learnt a lot. I wish this book was more available to the general non-dog-owning public as well, it would reduce a lot of misunderstandings between dogs and humans.

"The Genius of Dogs" by Brian Hare and Vanessa Woods is an excellent science based overview of what we know about how dogs think and behave. It's not a "how to train" kind of book, but I found it very useful in understanding dogs better (it's also really well written and just an entertaining read).
posted by Zumbador at 7:44 AM on November 19, 2019 [3 favorites]

Perfect Puppy in 7 Days: How to Start Your Puppy Off Right by Sophia Yin and Lili Chin. When I got a dog, I was terrified I would do everything wrong. I read so many dog training books (including those from Karen Pryor and Patricia McConnell) but loved Sophia Yin's book the most. It's a guide that goes to the specificity of literally hour-by-hour routines with a puppy. It's not about teaching a dog tricks but about teaching a dog to be polite and to adhere to unspoken human norms without commands (e.g., play quietly while hooman is busy, don't snatch food, stay off counters, don't chew human things, etc.). I get regular comments from strangers and friends on how well behaved he is, and he never gets into doggo hijinks. I can put cheese and charcuterie on a coffee table and he wouldn't take it. 100% credit to Sophia Yin.
posted by hotchocolate at 10:17 AM on November 19, 2019 [3 favorites]

ooh, I just saw this! I ditto "The Other End of the Leash," but I also really, really loved "The Culture Clash: A Revolutionary New Way to Understanding the Relationship Between Humans and Domestic Dogs" by Jean Donaldson.
posted by taz at 10:28 AM on November 24, 2019

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