Dog training book reccommendations, please!

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by la dee da, Nov 15, 2015.

  1. la dee da

    la dee da Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello everyone, long time no see!

    I'm hoping to get a puppy sometime in the next few years. I'm REALLY hoping I can make it work next year. This is the first time I'll be raising a pup, and I'd like to get some training books to help me out. The dog I'll be getting is a collie, and I plan to use positive reinforcement. I've watched and used methods from both Caesar Millan and Victoria Stilwell, and I respect both of them, so please do not turn this into a debate about them. That said, I believe Caesar's methods are stronger than what a collie requires (I grew up with a collie and a collie mix), so I'm looking for a book that strictly uses positive reinforcement. Any discipline I use will be a finger snap or hand clap followed by a firm "No!" or "Ah!"

    There are two things I'd like to have in my book(s): raising a puppy and what to expect at what stages, and training a dog the basics using only positive reinforcement. I'd also love it if the book could have some troubleshooting and it has to have a decent amount of pictures that show me what I'm supposed to be doing. I am open to crate training and clicker training, although I've never used either of them. If I can find a local trainer to help me, I'll do that, but I'd still like to have the books to help me prepare and learn at home.

    It's been a few years since I've frequented this forum, so I don't know what the "atmosphere" is like anymore, but there at least used to be a lot of very knowledgeable dog people. I'm hoping you guys can help me find the right book or books!
     
  2. dainerra

    dainerra Chillin' With My Peeps

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    honestly, I would read all of them that you can find! You can never have too many tools and ideas to choose from because not every thing will work for every dog.

    And your breed will always be an excellent source of training info (or will be if you choose wisely)

    You've got a lot of time to read training books so I'd go with all of them that you can find.

    Not training per se, but "How dogs think" can be a very enlightening read as well
     
  3. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

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    Sophia Yin is an awesome veterinary behaviorist who has some awesome books out there. Sadly, she passed away recently and it was a huge loss to the dog community. She has videos as well, and you can find good info about her all over the net.

    I agree that Caeser Millan is not your best resource. I will not get too deep into it, but there has been a lot of great research recently that refutes the "pack" idea of training. What we are learning is that domestic dogs do not use packs and they know that humans are different from them. So dominance theory is losing its hold as a training technique, IMO. Or at least, it should start decreasing in popularity of people pay attention to the recent research!

    I think a good mix of positive and firm "no" has worked well for my dog. I also use a crate and it is excellent. I recommend them to anyone, especially those with puppies. A crate just has so many awesome applications, and it's good to get them used to it early on.

    Your training methods may end up being a mix of a few, which is ok! Not every dog is created equal, so they don't all respond the same. I also agree that using your breeder as a resource is a great thing as well. A good breeder will appreciate that you pick their brains!
     
  4. la dee da

    la dee da Chillin' With My Peeps

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    dainerra, I will definitely read as many books as I can. I don't have a library card (it expired years ago), so I guess I'll have to get one and look at all the dog training books they have! I'd like to own a few, too. Currently, I ordered "Teach Yourself VISUALLY Dog Training" on Amazon. I hope to get a few more, as my Internet is not always reliable and I don't want to accidentally train my dog to do something bad!

    Chickerdoodle, some of the reviews on Amazon said the same stuff you mentioned about a dog's pack mentality. It's interesting how research can change the way we do things! I'll definitely take into account what you said and remain guarded when a book mentions pack mentality. Do you have any tips for using a crate? I'll look up Sophia Yin and see if I can find some of her videos and books.

    Thank you both!
     
  5. Copper Creek

    Copper Creek Out Of The Brooder

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    Puppy Preschool was great. Also, some food stores offer puppy training.
     
  6. dainerra

    dainerra Chillin' With My Peeps

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    one of the best things you can do is start searching NOW for a trainer. Another set of eyes is an invaluable resource. They can give you pointers if your timing is off for rewards and corrections. They can have an unbiased sounding board for when you can't figure out why your dog isn't responding to the method you are using to teach a particular task.
    A group class is also invaluable for helping you and your dog learn to work around distractions and keeping focus.

    Find a local kennel club that offers obedience classes. Many clubs also have a "lending library" for members. Do you plan to do any events with your dog? There are a lot of fun things out there and it's never too early to start background training. Join a collie forum like this one and start lurking and learning what books are recommended there. It will also give you time to feel out the membership and have an idea of who offers good advice and is knowledgeable vs who is an internet jockey who spouts the most recent fad, despite having no experience with it.

    "Before and After Getting your puppy" by Ian Dunbar is a good one.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. dainerra

    dainerra Chillin' With My Peeps

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    carefully screen any "big box" stores training program. The majority of training goes toward how to sell classes not how to train dogs. Some of their trainers are good but those tend to move out of the chain store quickly. Chain stores also have strict rules about how classes can be taught so the training tends to be very cookie cutter with no backup plan if that method doesn't work for a particular dog.

    Look for a trainer with a resume of working with dogs of your breed or at least a wide variety of breeds. Ask them what they have done with their own dog. I prefer a trainer who has titled their own dog in some form. If all I want is a dog with good manners, I expect the trainer to have titled dogs in obedience, rally and/or CGC. I want to hear what their clients have gone on to do with their dogs. It's all proof that they can handle a wide variety of situations and have at least some toolbox of knowledge to pull from.
     
  8. Copper Creek

    Copper Creek Out Of The Brooder

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    My experience with feed store trainers have been excellent.
     
  9. dainerra

    dainerra Chillin' With My Peeps

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    do you mean trainers who work as a 3rd party at the local pet store? yes, they can be excellent. That is because they are there to train dogs not bring money into the store. They are simply renting space.
    PetCo, PetsMart and similar stores? absolutely not. Some of them do it because they want to train dogs and the ones who are good at it quickly realize that this isn't an environment they can thrive in and more on. The training that those stores give focuses mostly on how to get people to pay for classes. Only a small portion is how to train dogs and they don't allow any deviation from the manual.
    We go there often to train (and make fun of the trainers) and they are clueless. Some of them have literally never owned a dog, let alone trained one to do anything.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. Copper Creek

    Copper Creek Out Of The Brooder

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    I do mean pet stores such as Petco etc. I believe your information is misguided and completely false. They are highly trained and have vital training tips.
     

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