WON the Maxwell Award from the Dog Writer’s Association of America for Best Training Book for 2016! A must have for pet owners, Novice and experienced Trainers! This book replaces my old book, “Complete Idiot’s Guide to Positive Dog Training.” (now out of print) This new, updated and expanded book has less fluff, more stuff!
Helpful tips to build a well trained dog!
Creating an environment for your dog so they can feel safe enough to learn, is the cornerstone of this book. The essence of Modern dog training is understanding that it’s impossible to teach a dog “don’t.” Don’t pull on leash, don’t jump on strangers, don’t chase the deer, don’t, don’t, don’t. However, it’s very easy to teach a dog “do.” Do walk calmly by my side, do sit politely for petting, do come instantly when I call. The difference is subtle, but significant. What do you want your dog to do instead? Once you have your “do’s” in place, you’ll be able to fix any problem that comes down the pike.
The art and science in this book will teach you all of the “do’s.” For every misbehavior, there’s a solution waiting for you here. You will learn about breaking down behaviors using a positive, proactive approach.
Step-by-step instructions will help make what may seem insurmountable into something much simpler. This book guides you through it all:
- A look at the science behind modern training techniques and why they really work.
- Expert advice on basic training – sit, down, stay, come, door etiquette and loose leash walking
- Addressing jumping, biting, stealing and other misbehaviors
- Helping your dog become a Canine Good Citizen
Life mirrors dog training. The effort you put in now will yield you many rewards, both immediately and for years to come.
Click here to see the companion ONLINE class!
After 25 years of reading, researching, and applying animal training to an assortment of finned, flippered, feathered, and furred critters—from whales to walruses, from dolphins to dogs—I can confidently state that it’s finally here: a succinct guide to dog training that explains the often-confusing and complex science of animal learning in simple terms.
Dogs are remarkable animals capable of learning a variety of complex behaviors if owners commit a little time each day and train in small steps using patience and understanding. When they are rewarded for each of these small steps, dogs can learn as fast as dolphins, chimpanzees, or even killer whales. For new pet owners, however, training always seems easiest right before they actually bring the new dog home to live. How hard could it be to teach a “Sit,” or to walk calmly on a leash, or basic potty training? That is until you realize that the wet spot on the rug is not water, that the neighbors really don’t appreciate barking at 2:00 a.m., and that a “let’s go” is supposed to cue your new pet to walk forward and not to go in reverse. As we often learn, what seems simple can get awfully complicated.
Pam Dennison has been a tireless advocate for positive, productive, and enriching training methods, most of which she has outlined in this guide. As a dog-training instructor and award-winning obedience trainer, Pam has patiently guided dog owners so that they might better understand the process of reducing unwanted behavior in a positive and productive way, while maintaining a trusting relationship with their pet. At the same time, she also teaches dog owners how to shape new behaviors such as basic obedience, potty training, and proper socialization with children. Advanced trainers have also benefited from Pam’s expertise, especially in competition obedience training, where her skills are most obvious.
But most notably, she has enough confidence in her personal-training knowledge and applied skills to take on some extreme behavior challenges using the same techniques outlined in the following pages. The results have been remarkable. Her success with a highly aggressive Border Collie named “Shadow” has been a shining example of training excellence that quite literally changed Shadow’s life. The training that Shadow received transformed him from a severely aggressive and reactive animal to a well-trained and well-mannered pet. Even more remarkable, Shadow is now competing in registered trials and doing excellent!
The rewards of dog ownership become evident when animals are taught behaviors that help them live comfortably and confidently in the household. The relationship between a family and their pet is further strengthened when fascinating behaviors are trained that highlight their pet’s intelligence and personality. Finally, true miracles are accomplished when owners learn how to change behaviors in a way that positively impacts the quality of life for animals challenged with overcoming fear, anxiety, phobias, and aggression. In a very practical way, this guide addresses many of these areas and has synthesized the multitude of training techniques into a helpful tool, complete with real examples, entertaining stories, and valuable training exercises. The rest is up to you. Stay positive and keep the training fun!
—Ted Turner, Animal Behaviorist
“Pam Dennison has done it again! She has written a fabulous book about training dogs that will benefit both the pet owner and novice or professional instructor. This in-depth volume bears Pam’s signature stamp of breaking tasks into small steps that make learning effective and fun for dog and human alike. When I think of Pam, I think of someone who really “gets” dogs and who stands out in her ability to teach using practical, simple, realistic, and effective dog-friendly methods. This wonderful book is chock full of easy to follow approaches that work with family dogs, working dogs, high-performance dogs, and dogs with problems. It is precisely because of its practicality and comprehensiveness that I plan to use this book in my Animal-Assisted Play Therapy training program. This is an absolute must-read for everyone who trains their own or others’ dogs!”
(and an additional review from Rise on her Animal Assisted Play Therapy Group!): “It is now the required text for our Essentials of Behavior & Training online course. Pamela Dennison has a rare gift for covering dog training information in very clear, practical terms, and this book is full of her wisdom and huge experience training dogs using positive approaches. I think all dog owners should read it and apply what’s in it, but it’s particularly useful for those working with their dogs for therapy work. I’ve read it over twice now (once to provide an endorsement), and I’ve gotten new things from it every time (and I’m a credentialed dog trainer with a fair amount of experience, as well as a mental health professional with a background in Applied Behavior Analysis as well as play therapy). It’s easy to read and packed with useful methods and tips.
I don’t make many book recommendations here, although there are many great books out there, but this one is just what’s needed for people wanting to involve their dogs in therapy and who wish to learn positive dog training methods!”
Risë VanFleet, PhD, RPT-S, CDBC
Founder, The Playful Pooch Program, Author of the award-winning Play Therapy with Kids & Dogs and The Human Half of Dog Training: Collaborating with Clients to Get Results
Wow! This book has it all. From basics and animal husbandry through to Premack and control games. If we had more well planned books like this in our stores there would be less problem dogs on our streets! Pamela does a great job of deciphering the science behind dog training in this user friendly guide to having a great dog!
Nando Brown, IMDT, CAP2, FSG1, FFITT
I love how Pam makes the science and art of training a dog understandable for all caregivers. By using this book you will not only understand how your dog learns, but teach him step by step many important behaviours; from preparing him for vet visits to teaching him to walking on a loose lead. You can enhance the relationship you have with your dog and the relationship he has with you by reading this excellent book.
Chirag Patel, PG Cert (CAB), BSc(Hons), CPBC, DipCABT Animal Behaviour & Training Consultant
I have been reading dog training books for 20 plus years and Pam Dennison’s book “You Can Train Your Dog” is the BEST one I have ever read! It’s very easy to read and understand. I highly recommend this book for anyone wanting to learn about how to train their dog using positive methods. You will not be able to put it down once you start.
Shirley Richards, CPDT-KA
In all my years of working with aggressive and feral dogs, I have only read one book that accurately explained and provided useful information about the seemingly dreaded subject of how to help dogs that seem beyond help. That book is yours. Thank you for your study and hard work.
I just finished your new book from cover to cover, and started it again. “You Can Train Your Dog; Mastering the Art & Science of Modern Dog Training,” is a Fantastically Terrific Book!!!! Out of all my dog books, which range from free downloads from Amazon, to the Merck vet manual, yours is the best!
Covers all the basic cues, but also teaches you how dogs learn, and how to problem solve – all is included. You also have a great writing style that mesmerizes the reader to keep reading. Funny, engaging, and knowledgeable! I highly recommend this book to anyone wishing to train dogs. Professional or amateur! The only training book needed!!
I’m halfway through and really like the book! It’s reminded me of a few things I really should train on a more regular basis and reinforce more often. I also liked the different approach to loose leash walking. Nubi is now heeling perfectly! What I love about the book is that it is a good combination of catering to newcomers as well as to more experienced dog owners and trainers.
Pam ~ I just want to let you know how much I am enjoying and learning from your newest book!! I can hardly put it down- and am having a blast using your techniques on my dogs and in my classes!! Thank You!!!!!!
As usual, Pam is the type of positive trainer who can get her point across unlike many others. I had the good fortune to be able to travel to New Jersey in 2008 so my dog reactive Pittie could attend her C.A.M.P. Reward program (now The R.E.W.A.R.D. Zone). It was fun, informative, and a definite learning experience. From there, I have read ALL of her books and watched her DVDs. I have also taken her online classes. She never disappoints and this new book is no exception. It is well written, easy to read and understand and covers everything from basic manners training to behavior problems. I couldn’t wait for it to be published and wasn’t disappointed :). Thanks, Pam, for being the caring, instructive, positive trainer that you are! I just wish you were closer to my area because we have a small canine rescue and pull the seniors and those with behavior problems- we could use you in this area!
A MUST READ FOR BOTH EXPERIENCED AND NEW TRAINERS
Wow! ‘You Can Train Your Dog!’ should be a staple to every dog trainer’s library. I have shown and trained dogs for over 25 years. I initially thought that this book might be ‘too basic’ for me, but purchased it because I had enjoyed some of Pam’s other books (Click your way to Rally Obedience & Bringing Light to Shadow). Well, I was wrong! I can’t believe how much I didn’t know and how much I could still learn. Pam’s book has taught me the basics behind modern dog training. I now know exactly how, why and when to feed that ‘cookie’. Pam does a great job explaining the science behind positive training and why it works & then she tells you exactly what to do to get the behaviors you want. Also, lots of stuff in there about dog & human body language interactions. I too had used punishment methods to train in the past but, after reading this book I will NEVER use it again!! I now know why it doesn’t work. I’m keeping my book on the coffee table as a reference. This book will be helpful to both new dog owners (trainers) and those of us who ‘thought’ we knew everything about training. Thank you, Pam I have already purchased another copy for a friend who is working with her Great Pyrenees rescue.
Laura Ashtyani, RN, BSN
Good book for new and experienced dog owner!
There is a wealth of information packed between the covers of this book that is important for new trainers to hear and for experienced trainers to hear again. Pam deals with the nuts and bolts of daily living with dogs and the positive techniques used today in training for dog sports. She presents the science and then goes on to give real life examples of how that science is applied in training. All this is done in a very readable (and often humorous) style. This book is definitely a permanent addition to my library of dog training books.
Dorothy Schneck, dog sports competitor
Pam explains the science behind learning so new owners or trainers new to positive reinforcement based training can easily incorporate it into everyday life. And it has lots of useful information for more experienced trainers as well. As a vet I particularly liked the chapter on animal husbandry training and I will recommend the book to my clients.
Great book! It puts a lot of what I have learned over the years conveniently in one place, and gives me a bit more to think about. An essential for any dog handler, and in my view, easy to read and understand with everything clearly explained, so should suit both new and experienced handler/trainers.
As a dog trainer, you know what you know, but can you communicate it to your clients? This book does it for you and your clients. To me, this is the value of this book. Pam has both the knowledge/skill of a positive trainer and the gift to communicate it. Whether you’re a trainer or an owner, you will benefit from this new book. Pam has the ability to make sense of all the modern science of dog training and make it all easily understandable. I lent this book to a client. I had some pages marked for her to read. A few days later she called me to say she had read the entire book and had a lightbulb moment. She was now understanding the ‘why’ and’ how’ of what we were trying to do to help and train her rescue dog. She commented that it was so easy to read and passed the ‘common sense test’ as well. I recommend it to anyone who wants to learn but not struggle to understand. This all should come as no surprise if you have read her previoius books!!! This one’s a keeper!!! Her books get better and better.
J Hagan, Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA)
Practical, logical and easy to follow book for owners, canine students and experienced trainers. It makes sense of the complicated science and offers humane solutions to many common problems. Love the new format.
Susan Land, UK
After reading “You CAN Train Your Dog…” by Pam Dennison, I could feel all the heavy apprehension I had been feeling about training our rescue dog, become lighter – I was so encouraged that I really COULD train my wayward rescue and keep her safe and happy.
Reading the different chapters helped me understand dogs and their thinking in ways I had never considered before. Pamela laid out different types of training in easy to understand chapters. Our dog is still in training, as I am, as I consider it a joint venture. We are actually making headway in areas I thought were beyond her. She really enjoys the Positive Training – we both come away from our time happier for it. This book is a treasure.
You Can Train Your Dog: Mastering the Art & Science of Modern Dog Training by Pamela Dennison is a clear and comprehensive guide for anyone who owns a dog, is thinking about buying a puppy, or adopting a dog from a rescue centre. Eighteen chapters are packed with advice for the average person to follow. Ms Dennison offers practical ideas about how training can be incorporated into a busy working life. The emphasis is on positive, non-confrontational methods; punishment for “bad” behaviour does not work. It is completed by an appendix containing links to every website a dog owner might need, whether they want an obedient pet that may be accepted by a pet therapy group, or a dog able to compete in one of many disciplines from agility to dancing.
Pamela Dennison’s book, You Can Train Your Dog: Mastering the Art & Science of Modern Dog Training, explains the science and the art behind successful dog training so her methods can be seen to be rock solid. “Punishment is like a nuclear bomb; if the blast doesn’t get you, the fallout will.” As a dog handler/trainer for obedience competition and the stage, I agree 100%. This is an excellent guide for any dog owner, illustrated throughout with photographs that show exactly how a dog demonstrates its reaction to handling, strangers, aggressive dogs, and a great deal more, and the saying “a picture paints a thousand words” has been used to full advantage. If I could award ten stars to You Can Train Your Dog, I would. Reviewed by Sarah Stuart for Readers’ Favorite
Pam Dennison has done it again! She has written a fabulous book about training dogs that will benefit both the pet owner and novice or professional instructor. This in-depth volume bears Pam’s signature stamp of breaking tasks into small steps that make learning effective and fun for dog and human alike. When I think of Pam, I think of someone who really “gets” dogs and who stands out in her ability to teach using practical, simple, realistic, and effective dog-friendly methods. This wonderful book is chock full of easy to follow approaches that work with family dogs, working dogs, high-performance dogs, and dogs with problems. It is precisely because of its practicality and comprehensiveness that I am using this book as a text in one of my training programs. This is an absolute must-read for everyone who trains their own or others’ dogs! Families and Animals
You Can Train Your Dog! I can’t emphasize enough how much this book has helped me! I’ve learned many things and seen amazing changes in my golden retrievers. I have a 17 month old female who is my wild child and an 8 month old male who is extremely sensitive. Please understand that you will not really be training your dog, as much as you will be re -wiring your brain to think like a dog. There is work involved but the reward is massive. I refer back to this book and certain chapters many times throughout my training. My only real challenge is I have two dogs and have to be a bit more creative in regards to some things. I will definitely be reading her new books. Thank you Pamela! Marie Specksgoor
A few REVIEWS from Amazon!
One of the clearest well-written ‘positive’ dog training books on the market, all the terminology and theory is covered and very well laid out, easy to follow. Any student of learning theory should have this book, Pam knows her stuff and has a knack of making it easy to understand.
I am so so so glad that when I looked up “modern dog training”, this is the book. It completely demystifies dog training, dog psychology and body language and ultimately helps develop a strong bond between you and your friend.
Every chapter is a wealth of knowledge, and it’s really structured so that you don’t really need to finish the whole thing before involving your dog. You can just go through this chapter by chapter and really watch your pet grow, as long as you’re committed to the method. In fact, the hardest thing to do, is to convince others that you don’t need to be scolding the dog all the time.
Probably the best part about the book is how much it focuses on your own behaviour as a human, and really makes you think about what you’re teaching your dog. It was a total lightbulb moment when it explained that the dog doesn’t know “bad” and “good” behaviours, only those that we as humans like and don’t like.
I have the benefit of taking classes with pam as well as reading her book – she has a positive way of training so no harsh collars, no hitting and no yelling. my dogs are my kids and this book approaches training like you would teach your child – positively so they have courage and good self esteem.
A logical gentle approach to working with animals and children. Read from the beginning and try to read over the clear step by step instructions and make them second nature. I practiced on the cat before I took over a rescue dog. That way I was fluent in the order of communication with the animal. Great book.
Pam has yet again produced a book that primarily guides one on how to connect with your animal and communicate effectively to create demonstrable and consistent results. The best part of the book was “what are you not doing right”; which is crucial to setting the stage to do the right things. Her lucid and humorous style of writing makes it an enjoyable and immensely educative reading.
You Can Train Your Dog has taught me how to train two small dogs who came to me untrained with a love for chasing cars. I have followed her well described lessons with success every time. Thank you Pam for making what appears to be difficult a simple and effective way to train the dogs we love. BTW, my cat learned a few things too. Delia Quigley