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Before and After Getting Your Puppy: The Positive Approach to Raising a Happy, Healthy, and Well-Behaved Dog Hardcover – April 29, 2004
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Top Customer Reviews
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...Read more ›
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 you....in 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.Read more ›
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.
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.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Be sure to get this book before you bring your new puppy home, because your life and the puppies life will be way easier! Read morePublished 5 days ago by Redcardbob
I come away from this book with the feeling that Dunbar is right about everything, but as a first-time dog owner, I'm confused and overwhelmed by it all and I feel like I'm doing... Read morePublished 18 days ago by Penny Thoughtful
Fabulous guide to preparing for training your puppy. Our's comes home next week so we'll see how well his recommendations work, but it all appears to have a sound methodology so... Read morePublished 28 days ago by Northern Virginia Mom
Great book for someone who loves dogs but believes they know everything about having a dog just because they had one (like me) a long time ago. Read morePublished 1 month ago by shona
Ian writes an entertaining summary of positive reinforcement puppy-training methods. I would recommend this to anyone getting a puppy, whether it is their 1st or 10th.Published 1 month ago by Josh M.
Very well written, humorous, easy to understand, and filled with ideas that I had not been aquainted with before (such as aspects of crate training, chewing, socialization, bite... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer