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Aggression in Dogs: Practical Management, Prevention & Behaviour Modification Paperback – October 1, 2004

4.6 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


Brenda Aloff is a pioneer in our field. Clicker trainers have proven that it can be done with competition obedience, agility, flyball, service dogs, indeed in all fields of what might be called performance training. But Brenda takes our technology into a field long considered the ultimate bastion of the force trainer: rehabilitating and training the aggressive dog. Brenda shows clearly, most importantly through her detailed case histories, that one can address the issues posed by these dogs in a constructive, effective way without losing oneself in the murk of dominance theory and all of the mythology that surrounds it. This book is a worthwhile and necessary addition to any serious trainer's library. --Morgan Spector, author of Clicker Training for Obedience

There are standards in the world...Campbell's on soup, Bud on beer and now, Aloff on aggression. Almost every dog training book I've ever read has provided me with some gem, or at least some tidbit, I can use. This book, however, is the mother lode. If you need to understand aggression, Aggression in Dogs is the book for you! --Missy Parker, RVN, President, National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors

This book is a must have for all trainers, kennel personnel, veterinarians and support staff. Not just for aggressive animals, Aggression in Dogs is an excellent reference tool for anyone interested in understanding canine behavior and the prevention of aggression. The protocols are field-proven effective. --Robert Wenzel, DVM

About the Author

Author Brenda Aloff is a professional dog trainer specializing in problem behavior. A large part of her practice consists of dogs that have been referred to her when traditional training techniques have failed. She works with owners on re-socialization of fearful and aggressive dogs as well as teaching puppy socialization, competition obedience, conformation, tracking, back-packing, musical freestyle, and agility classes at Heaven On Arf Behavior and Training Center in Midland, Michigan. She is a member of The Association of Dog Obedience Instructors, Trainer s Forum and several other breed and training organizations. Brenda travels all over the world giving talks on canine aggression and learning theory.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 418 pages
  • Publisher: Dogwise Publishing; 1st edition (October 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1929242204
  • ISBN-13: 978-1929242207
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 8.5 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #217,793 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book is terrific for owners of any dog. We actually rescued an dog-aggressive dog and actually went to Brenda Aloff for a few sessions. Her advice and exercises helped turn a stressed out little monster into my little princess. My dog isn't magically cured, but by using this book, we've taught her to look to her humans for guidance in stressful situations, instead of just attacking as she would in the past. She knows the rules and was taught them in a completely positive reinforcement manner. I highly recommend this book.
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Format: Paperback
This book actually has a lot of very good, practical, and very helpful information for the dog owner who wants to prevent (as I do) or treat agression problems, especially in agression-prone breeds like spaniels and some of the guarding breeds. I debated whether or not to give this book a five star rating. I settled on four stars for now because of my one "complaint" against the book -- it is a very, very COMPLICATED book to read and utilize. The author, apparently through many years of working with problem dogs, has developed a number of complex systems for treating and preventing agression problems which, while I'm sure will be useful and should work well, and just very complicated for the amateur to use. This is definitely NOT the kind of book one can read in bed when tired. It reminds me of some of my college texts -- a challenging and complicated read, and perhaps a bit on the dry side. I know that when I tried to read it recently, my mind often wandered.

To sum it up, I would recommend the purchase of this book for the interested reader, just be prepared to sit down and devote quality time to reading the book and learning the system of training the author has put forth. Unfortunately, my life right now is just too complicated to really give this book the time it deserves. I hope in the near future to have a little more free time to carefully read the book, absorb the information, and begin to implement it with my own dog.
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By Deb on August 16, 2007
Format: Paperback
This is really one of the best books out there for dealing with agression. It really clears up what it is all about and what to do about it in very practical terms. It helped me see what the real issues where and gave me a number of suggestions for training against the agression. Very practical where others are not. She doesn't waste time with too much philosphy but gets straight to the issues and the training. But the true measure is in the results and I am very happy about that. We had one very confused 6 yr old boy and he's coming along terrifically--I was really worried that he would spend his days angry, confused and mean. It's a turn around--so yes, things can be done to work with aggression. Thanks Brenda Aloff.
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Format: Paperback
This book gives real, usable tools to people whose dogs already have aggression issues or want to prevent them - there just is nothing better out there.

I do agree with "Dennis in Michigan's" review that this is a book you need to focus on while you read it. But if you want to understand and treat aggression in your dog, I think you do have to really understand the complex concepts she shares in the book. This may be why other books on the subject are less helpful - they water it down too much. If you are already having issues with your dog or trying to help someone else who is, you know that it just is not that simple. Do yourself a favor - skip the other books and spend your time reading this one.

I've seen Brenda Aloff twice in person, presenting some of the concepts in her books to a group. Her practical approach is great, and I've seen her methods work on several dogs in these presentations - with the dog's owner implementing them. She has real experience helping dogs with serious aggression issues and is not the type of trainer that picked out the best, well-adjusted dogs to have as her own showpieces -- you can tell she speaks from the experience of actually living with dogs that have had these types of issues.

If you read this book, you will likely be far ahead of the trainers in your area on the topic of aggression unless you are extremely lucky to have this talented a trainer near you (and I say that as a trainer myself). Trainers, read this for practical and sound advice you can give to your clients.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As an owner of two dogs with one beginning to exhibit aggression, I knew I needed to work seriously with him before it was out of control. After attending a local dog training class that was useless to us, I did my research and decided upon this book. It is great. The books is divided into two main sections with numerous subsections. The first portion of the book is dedicated to better understanding dogs. Although this would seem unnecessary, it is extremely helpful. It brings light to how humans and dogs simply misunderstand each other on basics. The second half of the book is devoted to the actual training. The training is laid out step by step with detailed explanations. There is even a troubleshooting area for dogs who need some extra help.

The book is a commitment. With over 400 pages of detailed information, it is a lot to take in. Do not expect to breeze through it on an afternoon's reading. The detailed information is truly necessary to successfully modify behavior. There are helpful exercises for you to do to get a better understanding of your dog and know what his/her triggers are. I took notes while reading the book and they have been invaluable. The author does use abbreviations throughout the book, but I didn't find it bothersome. If you forget what something is you can quickly look it up in the glossary. As for formatting and editing, yes, both could be better. I did notice more errors than I usually do while reading, however, they are not serious enough to make it unclear what the author is saying. The layout may not be as aesthetically pleasing as I would like, but is consistent and easy to follow. Chapter beginnings are not in columns, but the rest of the chapter does have columns. I choose this book for its excellent content, not its format and edited qualities.
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