Customer Reviews: Perfect Puppy in 7 Days: How to Start Your Puppy Off Right
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on August 9, 2011
This book is thorough and easy to follow; the illustrations are excellent. I love the chart at the end where you rate your puppy's progress for a variety of tasks over the course of the week. I used this book with a feral puppy and after 2 weeks (that includes time recovering from illness), he's approaching friendly strangers, handling like a champ for the vet, taking medicines with ease, walking nicely on leash, playing nice, not jumping up or nipping, and offering automatic sits for toys, treats, and attention, etc etc. So Dr. Yin's methods really work, they're friendly for the dog and the owner, and everyone has a lot of fun with them! Plus, a vet's perspective is priceless. HIGHLY recommend.
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on September 5, 2011
I've read many books on dog training and puppy raising, but this is one of the best! As one of the few board certified Vet/Behaviorists in the US Dr Yin brings good science and not the myths found in so many books on dogs. I teach pet dog classes and help train service dogs and recommend this book to all my clients. In addition to great information Dr Yin's book is very well illustrated.
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on April 13, 2012
I have several books about raising puppies and they all emphasize different things. This book is handy because it is a quick read and has a lot of pictures which can help you better understand the techniques suggested in the book. For really understanding the principles behind positive reinforcement training and why it is the more effective dog training technique, this book lacks a little bit in that area. It is also not quite as detailed as other puppy books out there. However if you want a good, basic book to help you get started with your new puppy, this is a pretty good buy. Just to mention, though the title says that you can have the perfect puppy in 7 days, be clear that the first 7 days are a mere foundation and obviously raising a puppy really takes work all the way until they are finished with adolescence (which can be 1 to 2 years), and their whole lives if you want to maintain that good behavior. Remember a puppy is a lifetime commitment so if working with a puppy actively for a year (and maintaining it for their life) sounds like too much work, you probably shouldn't be getting one.
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on March 29, 2012
First of all get this book before you get your puppy so you can have a plan in place day one. I'm a breeder and dog trainer and I wanted to comment on the "if your dog is not socialized in the first 8 weeks you have a bad puppy" comment. I question the use of the term "bad" you just have a lot of work to do the next 8 weeks. The optimal window for socializing a puppy closes at 16 weeks so you have lost half your time if your puppy is under socialized. How do you know? Read between the lines here, good breeders socialize their litter starting day one by handling them and later on by giving them exposure to all sorts of household activity and noises. They have the puppy meet new people and lots of novel experiences. Who doesn't do this? Puppy mills, puppy brokers, pet store pups, order over web pups, etc. Careful selection of where your puppy comes from and what happened in those first weeks make a huge difference. That's the message, be careful where you get a puppy from. The most convenient source isn't usually the best source. Also plan on a lot more time than 7 days. While a parent could write a book entitled how to have a Perfect Toddler in 30 days, it's unrealistic. I think the editor /publisher came up with this title rather than Dr Yin. Ignore the marketing title of this fine book and focus on the content which is excellent. Most of all be patient and enjoy your puppy.
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on October 3, 2012
We breed & show Australian Shepherds. WOW what a great book to begin the training - and such immediate results!!! Loved how the pups were able to learn "manners" (how to say/do their "please" sits) - our pups within one day! This is based entirely on positive reinforcement. My son is raising a hunting dog & much of the "training" is excellent for her also & walks right in to the training he'll do for upland hunting. Seriously, I think so much of this book I recommend it to everyone who purchases a pup from us & am considering making it part of my "puppy pack" for new owners. Dr. Yin also has a very useful website to help show you how to do some of the training & how to work on behavior problems. Highly, Highly recommended.
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on January 19, 2014
I am a veterinary professional, and the skeptic in me usually doesn't believe in "guaranteed results". But Perfect Puppy is the real deal. Sure, my title sounds a little hokey at first, but Perfect Puppy really does guarantee quick results because of a few reasons:
- Dr. Sophia Yin's methods are based on sound behavioral science. She explains and really emphasizes understanding why positive reinforcement and negative punishment work for virtually all animals (especially dogs). Because the book teaches you WHY her methods work so well (the science of it), I actually found that it made me more cognizant of my dog's behavior and allowed me to create my own techniques and personalize our training (the art of it). In simplest terms, her mantra of "Reward good behavior, and remove rewards for undesirable behavior" is a central tenet of operant conditioning, and it is guaranteed to work as long as...
- You understand and perform the exercises accurately, which is easy because they're so well illustrated in words and pictures. There's a definite level of skill required to do this stuff right, and Dr. Yin went to great lengths to illustrate them well to ensure that anyone can do them. The pictures speak a thousand words, and they give a great visual to help guide you. It really makes you think about communicating clearly with your dog. The more I picked up some treats and started practicing with my dog, the more I appreciated the level of detail and clarity built into Dr. Yin's pictorials.
- The emphasis in this book is about building a VERY strong foundation of happy focus. Because Dr. Yin emphasizes so many focus exercises and encourages training the dog in creative, low-stress manners, I found that these methods ultimately created a dog who *wanted* to work for me and who clearly understood what I was asking. I have been through many other training programs and followed the techniques of many other "professionals", and none have been as effective or long-lasting as Dr. Yin's. It is primarily because Dr. Yin's focus is on building a strong foundation. Once the foundation is there, everything else comes easy. This wasn't how I learned with past trainers, and I will never go back to them after having experienced the Perfect Puppy way!
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on October 26, 2011
Well, my pup has not become the perfect pup that Lucy is, but then I'm not training her full-time like Yin recommends. Sophia Yin is a great read, and she's super-focused in this book on getting a purebred puppy ready to live with her elderly parents. She's a lot more calm than I am (when will my puppy stop having accidents!!) and points out that if my puppy is not in his crate but free to roam about the house, I will discover accidents. She doesn't tell you what to do if your puppy is possessed by the devil, but overall her book is really helpful.

I wish I had this as a bound book, rather than a digital one. I'm not crazy about the embedded advertisements for Yin's products (treat & train)
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on September 17, 2011
I love that the author often shows you (with photos and illustrations) what she's talking about when it comes to how dogs see, how you should train them, how they relate to their environment. And I like her approach to training -- without some of the more heavy-handed and cruel practices of the past. Excellent!
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on July 26, 2012
I found this book to be well written & based in solid, modern canine behavior science. This sort of thing can be overwhelming or off putting for some, but this book is brilliant because it breaks things down into manageable bits. The pictures are also very helpful.

When reading through prior reviews I was troubled by one particular comment, "From the beginning it states that if the breeder doesn't socialize your puppy by 8 weeks then you have a bad puppy. And all positive reinforcement, really. How does the dog learn from it's mistakes?". Having read the book in its entirety, I feel as if this is a misrepresentation of what the book says. Never does it even imply that the puppy would be "bad" if not socialized by 8 weeks. It simply is ideal for both the owner & the pup to socialize by that age. It's not making a judgement, but rather a statement of fact. Otherwise, it would be like saying that because it would have been ideal for me to have gotten better grades in high school & because I did not I am therefore a "bad" person. The reality, in this analogy, is that because I did not get good grades in high school I had a steeper learning curve in college than some of the other kids. That's all.

If you want to know how to avoid setting your pup up for failure & how to clearly define expectations, then buy the book. Your pup will thank you.
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on November 8, 2012
We just got our first puppy ever. I read no fewer than 7 puppy books. Many I found confusiong, some contradicted others. This one was very clear - I followed the "say please" training - and my 8 week old puppy learned the first step in 5 minutes. I can see how this book can help ANYONE have a dog that is polite and well behaved just by using some of the initial training exercises. Some of the more advanced training is interesting, but I doubt I will train my dog to do karate kicks,etc. but if I had the time I think I could. And for the naysayer who says this book only works if you don't have anything else to do. . .well, I work full time have 3 school aged kids -- I "train" my dog maybe 10 minutes per day in bursts of a few minutes each, but then I am consistent with her each time she is supposed to "say please".
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