There are so many dog training and dog behaviour books available and after reading hundreds of them, I wanted to give you a heads up on which ones are worth reading. The books on this list are my very favourites, that I think every dog owner should have read.
Follow Me - a deal with your dog by Eva Bodfält
My favourite dog training and behaviour book of all times!
Swedish bestseller Follow me - A deal with your dog (Kontaktkontraktet in Swedish) is now available in English.
Eva Bodfäldt explains how to use positive reinforcement to build a strong relationship with your dog on a daily basis and how to teach the important signals that all dogs should know.
Follow me is aimed at new and experienced dog owners alike, as well as those who own companion, working or competition dogs.
NOTE: You can now get this book for £16 from Jo Belsten in Sea Palling, Norfolk, UK. You can contact Jo on firstname.lastname@example.org or 07798 518 759
Dominance in Dogs: Fact or Fiction? by Barry Eaton
Read this booklet AND Dog Language by Roger Abrantes (see further down on this page) to get a more realistic idea of how dogs function.
What scares me are all these trainers (you see a fair amount of them on TV) who argue that the dogs that they work with are dominant and trying to take over leadership in their families, but they don't seem to have the first knowledge about basic dog language?! All these dogs that they point out as dominant are all frustrated and fearful - ears pinned back, tails down and the corners of their mouth pulled far back. There is nothing dominant about them! PLEASE read this book and get your facts straight. It is the most important piece of dog related litterature out there right now...
For more info about the author and the book, go to www.deaf-dogs-help.co.uk
After You Get Your Puppy by Ian Dunbar
The only puppy book in English that I can recommend. I've read a fair few and all the others mix in the odd bit of harsh treatment, which is not necessary.
Dog Language by Roger Abrantes
This is one of those books that every dog owners should have in their bookshelf as a reference book. Danish ethologist Roger Abrantes goes through all aspects of dog language, organised alphabetically from A - Z. The pictures in the book are beautiful and make it easy to relate the information to your own dog. If you want to learn about dog language, this is the book to get!
The Culture Clash by Jean Donaldson
One of my all time favourite books. It is a great reference book and I find myself going back to it again and again. A book for all dog enthusiasts and for any one who wants to understand their dog.
Don't shoot the dog by Karen Pryor
This is the book to have in your possession if you are a serious dog owner/trainer. Karen will even help you improve your tennis skills and teach you how to cut down on the children's bedtime with this wonderful book. It is all about positive reinforcement - for your dog AND for you!
Bones Would Rain from the Sky by Suzanne Clothier
I went to see Suzanne Clothier speak at the Dog Trainer Conference in Bruges in 2004 and was very impressed with the simplicity of what she was saying. Back to basics, get to know your pets, treat them with the respect they deserve. Reading her book is a complete joy. This book is a must read for any dog loving person and it is very educational too!
The Other End of The Leash by Patricia B. McConnell PhD
A new favourite book in my collection (and I've got a few!). The amount of times I've shouted out 'exactly!' while reading this book I do not know, but it has been plenty. It is one of my top books to recommend to my clients, just to help them understand their dogs better and to start thinking about them in less humanised terms. I've also had quite a few ideas for my dog training classes from this book. Top marks for this one!
Dogs - A Startling New Understanding of Canine Origin, Behaviour, and Evolution by Raymond Coppinger, Lorna Coppinger
I went to see Raymond Coppinger at a weekend workshop one weekend in May and I was entranced by the information he gave us. Could it be true that we didn't domesticate the dog? That it was a natural selection of the canids that had less hazard avoidance behaviour and stronger forging behaviour that moulded a new species - the dog? Raymond Coppinger is a dog ethologist and studies dogs, their background, their behaviours and their working environments. He tells us fascinating tales from his life and studies and he tells us about the similarities and differences between dogs and wolf. This book should be read by every dog breeder and every person thinking of taking on a puppy. In fact, it should be read by anyone that has anything to do with dogs - even if you don't believe in everything he says, it is a fantastic book for challenging the knowledge we thought we had about dogs.
The Dogs Mind shows you how to get the best out of your dog, by thinking like him and not as a human. It takes you through all kinds of aspects of our canine companion.
SMOKE ALARM TRAINING FOR YOUR DOG by Anders Hallgren
A Swedish animal behaviorist introduces a new, revolutionary training technique that could save your life! Any dog, small or large, can be taught to alarm its family for smoke or fire in the home, whether they live in a house or an apartment. Simple step-by-step program and illustrative pictures show how dog owners can have a smoke alarm trained dog in just a few weeks. Book of the month in the US in July 2003!