Best books about dogs? (training or otherwise)

Discussion in 'Books' started by blackandwhitedog, Jul 3, 2017.

  1. blackandwhitedog

    blackandwhitedog Registered Users

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    Ok, this is a very broad topic - but I'm going away for a couple of weeks and am looking for some books to take with me. I thought I'd tap into the knowledge of the forum members for recommendations!

    What are your favourite dog-related books?

    Training books are good, but I won't have Jess with me (this is going to be hard for us both :(). Something like Patricia McConnell's The Other End of the Leash is ideal - I learned a lot from it but it was also a good read. But I've read that already!

    Any recommendations would be much appreciated!

    (And so would any tips on not missing your dog too much when you have to go away.... She will be with my husband so I'm sure she'll be fine, but I'll be away for 3 weeks - a very long time without my little dog :( :(:()
     
  2. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    Jean Donaldson - The Culture Clash
     
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  3. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    Also currently reading How Dogs Learn (when I have the time), which is interesting.
     
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  4. Snowy

    Snowy Registered Users

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    Covers most things at a basic level: The Perfect Puppy - Gwen Bailey
     
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  5. Jojo83

    Jojo83 Registered Users

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    I could recommend at least a dozen books but it really depends upon your level of interest and books you've previously read. Jean Donaldson - Culture Clash is very good (in fact pretty much anything Jean Donaldson :) ) . How dogs learn is very good (I've read it twice for courses and assignments :) ) Anything by Patricia McConnell is an interesting read. For in depth James Serpell is very good as is Linda P Case - the list is long ......
     
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  6. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    If you could give me some tips on this, I'll be all ears. I'll be without at least two of my dog for three weeks in August. I don't want to go :(
     
  7. blackandwhitedog

    blackandwhitedog Registered Users

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    Brilliant start, thanks so much! I've not read The Culture Clash or How Dogs Learn, so that's a good start.

    I read a lot so it could be novels, psychology, memoirs, whatever. I'm interested in your 'top reads' -what are the books that you love, that have really influenced you? My level of interest is quite high but I'm a bit of an armchair trainer - I seem to be better at reading than putting it into practice!!

    I know, I don't want to go either. I used to travel a lot and have cut it back almost entirely. I left Jess for the first time last month , and now I have another two trips this month. Before I got Jess this would have been great but now I'm pretty miserable at the thought. I'm really going to miss her. [as there's no crying emoji, I'll put this instead :rain::rain:]

    I've decided just to make the trips as enjoyable as possible while I'm away and trust that my husband will manage to keep her alive (and at home!) until I get back.
     
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  8. heidrun

    heidrun Moderator

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    I'm reading Kathy Sdao Plenty In Life Is Free at the moment and enjoying it.
    How is Jess's training going?
     
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  9. Joy

    Joy Registered Users

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    A novella I loved was 'Dog' by Mike Robbins. It's really original, funny and surprising. It's only 99p for Kindle.
     
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  10. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    How, why, where :( I don't go away because I cannot bear to leave the dogs! Will your OH be looking after them? If so, that isn't so bad, but I know you will miss them so much.
     
  11. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Moderator Forum Supporter

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  12. blackandwhitedog

    blackandwhitedog Registered Users

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    Thanks for asking! I wish I had a better answer but her gundog training is going very badly I'm afraid. All my fault, obviously. I'm not sure there's a short answer to this...

    As a pet, she's fine - her recall is good, she is very focused on me, and she walks well on a lead unless she's very excited. Gundog work has been less successful. She'll retrieve in the garden but I've not worked consistently enough on clicker retrieve to build a reliable retrieve outside. She is also very noise sensitive - I'm not sure if I've mentioned this on other threads but it's a long story that starts with getting frightened by fireworks last year (not my fault) and continues through poorly managed introduction to shot (mostly my fault). I took her to a spaniel trainer a month or so ago and had a very unsuccessful session. There was a lot of background noise from a building site nearby and she was really frightened, she just couldn't do anything else. He was very patient with her, and just tried to assess the level of anxiety - taking her further and further away until we were in a shed with the door closed and one of his dogs for reassurance. He thinks it will take a lot of work, and that she may never be comfortable in a shoot environment. So that was a bit disheartening, mostly because I think he might be right: she is quite an anxious dog, and though she's quite happy and confident within our day-to-day life, she does get stressed easily and maybe a shoot will always just be too much. Or maybe she just needs to mature a bit?

    I've really been going round in circles about it - is this just a training issue, and if I fully commit to gundog training and work consistently on the clicker retrieve, noise desensitisation (though I have been doing this anyway) we will get there, or is it really that she's not a good fit for gundog work, and we should work on something else? I don't know how to answer it. Or just work on gundog training for fun and if she's ever able to come out on a shoot it's a bonus? What do you think @heidrun?

    Sorry, I've derailed my own thread! Thanks so much for the book recommendations guys, I'll be putting in an amazon order tomorrow. (But keep them coming!)
     
  13. heidrun

    heidrun Moderator

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    It must be very disheartening but I wouldn't give up just yet. Amy was very gun nervous when she first came to me but we got over that hurdle with a lot of patience. Even cap guns made her flinch when I first started training with her. So I started by carrying bits of bubble wrap in my pocket and popping bubbles every so often when we were playing. I still use it now as an alternative to a starting pistol when I train drop to shot. It is a case of being inventive and finding what your dog is happy with in what situations and then proceeding from there. Maybe find another training venue, somewhere more quiet with either the same trainer or someone different. Training next to a building site is not ideal even for a dog that is not noise sensitive. It would unsettle all of my dogs for sure.
     
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  14. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    In August, my sister is getting married in Portugal. They have rented a huge villa for the ceremony, and for ten days around it, and all the guests (14 of us, I believe), will be staying there for that time. She also wanted a week beforehand at another villa we've stayed at before, with the two of them, me and J and another couple, just to chill. So that takes it up to just under three weeks. J will be coming, too, although I'm secretly hoping that the friend we've arranged to look after the dogs will let us down so he will have to stay here with them and fly out for the ceremony (which we can get some other friends to cover).

    It looks like Luna will be coming with us, because she's not had her season yet and I can't risk her being here with Shadow under someone else's charge if there's a risk she might start while we're away. But we can't take all three dogs because the bride will have her dog and W&S don't get on with him, so it becomes very stressful.

    Three weeks in Portugal sounds lovely in concept, but ... blargh.
     
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  15. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    Oh can see you cannot get out of that and it does sound magical and restful, but to make it perfect it needs the dogs:(. At least you will have Luna which will help.
     
  16. Jojo83

    Jojo83 Registered Users

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    @blackandwhitedog OK he's my list of must read books

    How dogs learn - Burch and Bailey
    Dominance in dogs Fact or Fiction - Barry Eaton (I think this should be compulsory the reading for all dog owners whether they've had a dog before or not :) )
    In defence of dogs - John Bradshaw
    Reaching the animal mind - Katen Pryor
    Think Dog - John Fisher (a founding father of positive training in the UK and the APBC) (revised by Pam McKinnon)
    Clever Dog - Sarah Whitehead
    The Culture Clash - Jean Donaldson
    Don't shoot the dog - Karen Pryor
    For the love of a dog - Patricia B McConnell
    Dogs - A new understanding of canine origin, behaviour and evolution - Coppinger & Coppinger
    Beware the Straw Man - Linda P Case
    Tail Talk the secret language of dogs - Sophie Collins
    The Domestic Dog - James Serpell (lots of science and studies)

    and there's loads more I could mention :)
     
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  17. Lisa

    Lisa Moderator Forum Supporter

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    I'm currently reading Inside the Dog by Alexandra Horowitz, and it's very good. But only about a third of the way through so I haven't read it all.
     
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  18. blackandwhitedog

    blackandwhitedog Registered Users

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    Thanks so much for all these recommendations. I've been away since Tuesday and thought I would have lots of time for reading but haven't had a moment so perhaps these books will have to wait.

    To start with I've chosen: In Defence of Dogs, For the Love of a Dog, Plenty in Life is Free and Dog by Mike Robbins. (I basically chose Amazon Prime-eligible options) But lots of the suggestions look great so thanks to everyone who's replied.

    And I've not even had too much time to miss Jess. She is very happy with my husband so that's a relief. If I skype, she comes to investigate at the sound of my voice, looks at the screen and cocks her head from one side to another, wags her tail a bit to say hello and then goes off again. It's funny to see her react, though I think it's to my voice rather than the image on the screen. But she's doing really well and my husband is really enjoying spending the time with her (and doing a very good job with her). So that's all good. I've got another 2 weeks of travel ahead and then we'll all be reunited.

    Thanks again for the book recommendations!
     
  19. Jojo83

    Jojo83 Registered Users

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    I have to remember to have the sound off with my phone/tablet/laptop if I'm reviewing videos so my dogs don't hear my voice and cone bouncing up to see what I want :).
    Good to hear all is going well at home in your absence:)
     

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