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Last active Jan 8, 2020
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The Culture Clash, Jean Donaldson

(2005, 2nd ed.)

Jean is a pioneer in her field, and this book is her magnum opus. Truly groundbreaking work. Must read. However, the book is best read cover-to-cover and makes a poor reference, until the last chapter where Jean spells out step-by-step training guides. That said, Jean's focus is on training and less on the immediate concerns you will have when you get a puppy, and while it certainly covers socialization, housebreaking and initial concerns about your first days with your pup are not emphasized. However, some of the socialization suggestions are unrealistic for those of us who are not so extroverted.

Train Your Dog Like a Pro, Jean Donaldson


Step-by-step training guide, this is the perfect accompaniment to The Culture Clash. Includes DVD, which is now available on YouTube. Entirely focused on training, rather than puppy-rearing. My only critique is the book does not focus on clicker training, and yet the DVD uses it significantly. Ultimately, the DVD and the book feel like two separate pieces of media; they overlap and support each other, but each can be used individually. The book has call-outs for when to watch the DVD, but their only purpose is to indicate "this is covered in the DVD."

Before and After Getting Your Puppy, Dr. Ian Dunbar


Dr. Dunbar does a great job of focusing on the immediate time before and after getting your puppy, like focusing on housebreaking, socialization, and bite inhibition. It's the only book to give as much time to before you get your puppy as after, and in that vein, shadows The Art of Raising a Puppy.

The Power of Positive Dog Training, Pat Miller

(2008, 2nd ed.)

Skimmed this book. Pat mostly re-presents the same conclusions you'll find in The Culture Clash, but in a more organized, step-by-step way, and with an emphasis on using a clicker. I'd probably just use Jean's book (Train Your Dog Like a Pro). This book does briefly cover puppy-rearing and socialization, but not in great detail.

On its own, this book is good - perhaps, even the most approachable authoring of modern puppy-rearing and training based on positive reinforcement - but it doesn't break new ground. If you've already read Jean Donaldson's books, you won't find much new content here.

The Art of Raising a Puppy, Monks of New Skete


I read this book first. This was an okay introduction through the first half of the book, but as I learned from other books, the training techniques recommended in the later chapters are very old school. They recommend praise instead of treats, and use aversives like shaking the dog and leash corrections. That said, some training and housebreaking ideas can be useful, even if you ultimately change how you implement them.

Perfect Puppy in Seven Days, Dr. Sophia Yin


Fully illustrated (photos) guide to training your new pup. As such, it is a very short read, and not very detailed, but the photos do a nice job of illustrating key concepts. The title is rather optimistic.

In progress.

The Other End of the Leash, Dr. Patricia McConnell

(eBook/Overdrive, Hoopla/Audiobook)

In progress.

How to Behave So your Dog Behaves, Dr. Sophia Yin


Read about half of this before it got yanked away from me (returned to Axis360).

The focus is similar to The Other End of the Leash: how your dog picks up behaviors from you. It also covers how to read your dog's body language with illustrations.

Also, reading this book on Axis360 is pretty terrible - it's basically a PDF of the book. I have a print version on hold.

How to Teach a New Dog Old Tricks, Dr. Ian Dunbar

On hold.

Don't Shoot the Dog, Karen Pryor

On hold.

The Puppy Primer, Dr. Patricia McConnell and Brenda Scidmore

On hold.

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