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

Who am I?

I’ve been a dog trainer for over twenty years, so helping people learn how to communicate with their pups is what I’m all about! I also create how-to content for a variety of pet websites and I’m now lucky enough to fill my days writing dog-centric novels where all the happily ever afters involve four paws. My two furry best friends, Millie the Smooth Brussels Griffon and Olive the mixed-breed dog, provide tons of inspiration for my books, and I also get to round out my canine characters with frequent “guests stars” aka the foster dogs that hang out with us while they look for their forever homes.

I wrote...

Lost, Found, and Forever

By Victoria Schade,

Book cover of Lost, Found, and Forever

What is my book about?

What do you do when you discover your four-legged best friend might belong to someone else? From the acclaimed author of Who Rescued Who comes the charming story of a custody battle between two pet parents who would do anything for the dog they both adore. A winning romance and a pure delight!

The books I picked & why

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On Talking Terms with Dogs: Calming Signals

By Turid Rugaas,

Book cover of 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!)

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

By Emma Parsons,

Book cover of 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!

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

By Patricia McConnell,

Book cover of 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!

Pit Bull: The Battle Over an American Icon

By Bronwen Dickey,

Book cover of 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.

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

By Suzanne Clothier,

Book cover of 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.

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in dogs, dog training, and clicker training?

5,888 authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about dogs, dog training, and clicker training.

Dogs Explore 252 books about dogs
Dog Training Explore 17 books about dog training
Clicker Training Explore 7 books about clicker training

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like Rescue Road, Little Boy Blue, and The Art of Racing in the Rain if you like this list.