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Ian Dunbar
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (155 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Before & After Getting Your Puppy is a simple, practical guide for anyone bringing a new puppy into the family. In clear steps, with helpful photos and easy-to-follow training deadlines, Dr. Ian Dunbar, who pioneered puppy classes and a loving style of dog training in the 1970s, presents a structured yet playful and humorous plan for raising a wonderful dog. The guide is based on six developmental deadlines:

• completing owner education and preparation

• assessing a puppy’s prior socialization and education

• teaching errorless housetraining and chewtoy-training

• completing a socialization program of meeting strange dogs and people

• learning bite inhibition

• a continuing program of ongoing training

In the first half of the book, Dr. Dunbar focuses on what the owner needs to know to select a great puppy. In the second half, he presents the crucial lessons the puppy must be taught during its impressionable early development. Over time, Dr Dunbar’s kind, positive program has been proven the most effective.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The star of the British television show Dogs with Dunbar has been teaching pet owners to train their dogs humanely and thoroughly for over 30 years. In this compassionate and honest volume, the veterinarian shares his definitive opinions about the way dogs should be trained. This is a great tool that anyone who wants to get a dog should peruse before they bring their pup home because, as the author points out, owning a dog is a big responsibility, and "millions of dogs are euthanized each year simply because their owners did not know how to housetrain or chewtoy-train them." Dunbar includes information that prospective dog owners should know before they select a puppy, and he also explains how to meet his proscribed series of important Developmental Deadlines (two of which come up even before the dog reaches its new home!). In addition to a step-by-step guide to every stage of puppyhood, the book includes practical services, such as a pre-puppy shopping list and lists of the best dog training books and videos.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


this edition belongs... alongside such classics as Dog Training in 10 Minutes and The Power of Positive Dog Training. -- Library Journal, Spring 2004

Product Details

  • File Size: 5360 KB
  • Print Length: 241 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1577314557
  • Publisher: New World Library (October 6, 2008)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001HL9C50
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,986 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
114 of 116 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Essential Help for You and Your New Puppy May 29, 2007
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I bought this book after reviewing some of the articles on the [...]website, which offers a preview of some of the key points of the book. I did read many of the reviews here and felt that the negative comments were somewhat over-reactive.

From my perspective, the book not only makes sense about how to raise a puppy, but also about how to raise a child! Why waste time trying to teach kids or dogs what is wrong, until they eventually figure out what is right? That seems really inefficient, now that I know the "lure-reward" technique. This technique lets you use the essential nature of the dog to train it to do what you want it to do: pee, chew, and poop where you want it to, for instance. Walk calmly on leash, for another. The trick is to not fall into the trap of thinking that a few weeks of short and long-term confinement is somehow cruel to the dog. Like children, dogs respond quickly to a consistent routine. It DOES require YOU to be consistent and to have discipline, and I definitely figured out where I was being lazy and too lax, and whenever I went back to the tighter crate schedule, things improved immediately. I realized that I confused a few days of successful potty events with "success" in overall training and went from confinement to total lack of restraint, so I referred to the book again and made some corrections.

Here are a couple of tips that helped make this book so useful for me. First, I had a consultation with a pet dog trainer who knew about (and recommended) Dunbar's technique. This really helped me when addressing the issues that I felt were not explained in the book (more on that later). Secondly, while I took Dunbar's stern advice as the kind of advice someone gives to people who might not pay attention...
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51 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Even worth it AFTER you already have your pup January 29, 2006
By rpcvmom
I'd recommend this to anyone who has a pup already (get it quickly!) as well as anyone thinking about adding a dog - also, get it quickly- before the dog, since you can. The "Before" part is a small fraction of the book, but valuable. Reading it before getting Fido would help you better understand the particular (and commmonly unknown)challenges training a dog entails, and help you choose a desirable breeder.

Reading the WHOLE book before getting a puppy would really help you prepare to become its owner and trainer.

Some have said the book scared them, or that it was unrealistic...and if making a mistake scares you, don't buy the book. However, if you can recover, and vow to try to do better, and realize your mistakes or inadequacies do impact others (or your pet), but realize and accept that you can still make things up- just with extra work- get this book. Dunbar doesn't try to scare folks, he just points out that mistakes can create bad/wrong impressions (in people or dogs) and these require extra work to correct...(in people or dogs).

He lays out developmental "deadlines" -just as children have sensitive periods so do dogs, and training in certain areas takes "best" during this period.

He provides non-traditional, positive, somewhat demanding methods for training your dog. By "Demanding" I mean he asks you to do thing at the start that are some work for order to have a lower-maintenance dog later. Inviting (many different) people over to meet your dog to socilalize it is a lot of work, but if it means your dog doesn't bite the meter man or the neighbor's child, and does behave more like Lassie than the neighborhood stray, isn't it worth it to try? Your choice, of course.
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71 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the BEST puppy books ever! April 22, 2006
I've read every dog training and behavior book out there since 1982. And I've raised six puppies as my own pets over the years. When I found myself in a bind with a challenging, rambunctious new challenge, I read everything looking for help- CESAR MILAN, GOOD OWNERS/GREAT DOGS by Kilcommons, PERFECT PUPPY Gwen Bailey , MOTHER KNOWS BEST by Carol Lea Benjamin, HOW TO RAISE A PUPPY YOU CAN LIVE WITH, SARAH HODGSON, THE ART OF RAISING A PUPPY, Jan Fennel'S DOG LISTENER, UNCLE MATTY.... you name it. I'd spend hours reading looking for suggestions. Far and away the #1 book that helped me the most and offered me the most practical advice was IAN DUNBAR'S BEFORE & AFTER YOU GET YOUR PUPPY- mostly the 'after' part! The book contains short and sweet, easy to read and apply how to's for raising a well-behaved, well-adjusted puppy. You know the kind that goes potty outside, is quiet through the night, will go into her crate and stay quietly without whining. After all these years, I thought I knew it all. I didn't. When I needed help, IAN DUNBAR provided it. The best advice ever, 1-2-3 housetraining, confinement, rules, restrictions, 'sssshhh', etc.

ONE (1) complaint: my puppy can't get the stuffing out of the Kong - any size - and whines terribly over it in frustration.

Also recommended: MOTHER KNOWS BEST, Carol Lea Benjamin/ THE ART OF RAISING A PUPPY, Monks of New Skete/ NO BAD DOGS Barbara Woodhouse/ TV Show: Cesar Milan's DOG WHISPERER on National Geographic.
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60 of 68 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading but there's a but. June 17, 2006
By Todd S.
I'm usually not that motivated to write a review but in this case I am. I'm glad I read the book however it's about 200 pages and organized and indexed very poorly. It is also extremely wordy and repetitive and found at least one spelling error. It can be condsensed into a 46 page bullet chart!

The advice is good but a lot of it way over the top and it gives you the sense that if you don't follow the advice completely your puppy will be unmanageable inevitably wind up in a shelter where no one will want to adopt it. And frankly some of the advice is really overdoing it. For example, having the puppy parties and making all your guests wash their hands and take off their shoes prior to working with the puppy. While you really decrease your chances of the dog becoming ill that way, it really harps on the need to do it when it could spend more pages addressing the issue of what to do when the puppy doesn't want the chewtoys.

It also tells you to avoid breeders who don't teach the puppy basic commands and sorry to say that most breeders don't do this. Its just not a realistic expectation especially if its a rare breed or there was a waiting list which was the case for my dog.

It doesn't tell you what to do in many common scenarios such as the puppy not eating right and it doesn't discuss whining and crying through the night and that was the information that I found myself needing the most and it wasn't in the book.

I also found that it takes time to get the puppy to want to play with chew toys. Mine was not immediately drawn to them and still doesn't have much interest in them apparently. And again, it does not say what to do in that instance.

When I read that the goal is to have zero accidents I was excited and thought I could do it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Humane puppy training
Dr. Dunbar offers clear precise advice about puppies. The training he suggests seems humane and productive. Read more
Published 9 days ago by Rebeccah Kay
5.0 out of 5 stars Dr Dunbar is right on target!
Greatest puppy training book ever. I buy it for friends now. If you want to train your dog to love his crate & go in it voluntarily, this is for you. Read more
Published 10 days ago by J. Cafar
1.0 out of 5 stars "..developmentally retarded"
As someone who has adopted 4 (amazing) dogs from the shelter I was looking forward to learning something new when I recently adopted my first puppy. Read more
Published 16 days ago by KCkids
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a very good book that should be read by all dog owners ...
This is a very good book that should be read by all dog owners and prospective dog owners. It gives some very good tips on choosing a breeder and raising a puppy.
Published 17 days ago by Kevin Littlejohn
3.0 out of 5 stars Loosen the Leash?
Some very useful info, especially on expens, kongs, bite inhibition, but written in a somewhat didactic tone that was a little off-putting. Read more
Published 25 days ago by Julia
4.0 out of 5 stars A book all puppy owners should read
I wish I had read this book before I had gotten my dog from a shelter. It gives you an overview of what to expect when you welcome a pooch to your family. Read more
Published 1 month ago by T.C.
5.0 out of 5 stars Dunbar is AMAZING!!
Dr. Dunbar is AMAZING!!
Published 1 month ago by Frances
2.0 out of 5 stars Not realistic or practical
I read this book before getting our 9 week old puppy. It all seemed to make sense and I started the techniques right away. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Brentash
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read for a prospective first time pup owner!
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
100% satisfaction guaranteed!
Published 2 months ago by Pep
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More About the Author

Consulting Editor Ian Dunbar, Ph.D., MRCVS, is the founder and an ongoing member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers. Consulting Editor Pamela Leis Higdon, an aviculturist of long standing, was an associate editor for Bird Talk magazine and the first managing editor of Birds USA.

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