The best dog training and behavior books to help you understand your furry best friend

Victoria Schade Author Of Lost, Found, and Forever
By Victoria Schade

The Books I Picked & Why

On Talking Terms with Dogs: Calming Signals

By Turid Rugaas

On Talking Terms with Dogs: Calming Signals

Why this book?

This is the book that completely changed the way I interacted with dogs. I read it during the infancy of my dog training career and it opened my eyes to the micro-communications that dogs have with one another (and us!) that can show us exactly how they’re feeling. A must-read for every pet parent who wants to better understand what their dog is saying. (Hint: that waggy tail might not mean your dog is happy!)


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The New Click to Calm: Solutions for All Dogs in a Challenging World

By Emma Parsons

The New Click to Calm: Solutions for All Dogs in a Challenging World

Why this book?

Leash reactivity is one of the most common issues that pet parents face, and this book maps out easy-to-follow protocols for navigating it, as well as other common behavioral challenges. This photo-rich book features my method of choice, clicker training, which is a science-based dog-friendly way to bring about positive behavioral change. Plus, clicker training is lots of fun!


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The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs

By Patricia McConnell

The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs

Why this book?

Go ahead and add every single book McConnell has ever written to your reading list because the Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist and all-around badass can do no wrong. McConnell has published a series of dog training books covering everything from puppy training to living in a multi-dog household peacefully and they’re all wonderful, but this one stands apart because it weaves lyrical storytelling with real-world dog training advice. Major McConnell fangirl here!


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Pit Bull: The Battle Over an American Icon

By Bronwen Dickey

Pit Bull: The Battle Over an American Icon

Why this book?

Well researched, eye-opening, and surprisingly entertaining, this book proves that the legacy of the pit bull and the dogs themselves are miles apart. I’m a frequent pit bull foster mom and I know firsthand how wonderful these misunderstood dogs are, but Dickey actually brings the facts to paint a picture of a breed in peril through no fault of their own. This book will make you question everything you think you know about pit bulls.


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Bones Would Rain from the Sky: Deepening Our Relationships with Dogs

By Suzanne Clothier

Bones Would Rain from the Sky: Deepening Our Relationships with Dogs

Why this book?

If I tell you that this book made me cry will it prevent you from reading it? There’s so much to love in this one, from the “news you can use” training lessons to the recurring themes of treating our dogs with the empathy, respect, and compassion they deserve. Think you need to be an alpha to have a well-behaved dog? Think again and let Clothier’s beautiful book show you the way.


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