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The Dog Who Loved Too Much: Tales, Treatment And The Psychology Of Dogs Hardcover – March 1, 1996

4.2 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

This is one of the best books for dog trainers and pet owners to come along in years. Dodman, a veterinarian, teaches behavioral pharmacology at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine and is the director of its Behavior Clinic. He is well known and respected for his research on domestic animal behavior and holds three patents for pharmacological solutions to problem behavior. While he recognizes the power of medications to help provide answers to some training and behavior problems, he looks upon those solutions as a last resort and back-up to well-constructed assessments of the owner/dog relationships and thoroughly planned rehabilitation programs based on behavior modification and obedience training. The 14 chapters in this book relate actual cases from Dodman's clinical practice. He is clear in his explanations and cuts to the core of each problem. Part 1 deals with types of aggression: dominance, rage, territorial/fear, dog vs. dog, and dog versus baby. Part 2 discusses the fear of thunderstorms, inanimate objects, and separation, particularly geriatric separation anxiety. The final section deals with compulsive behaviors, hallucinations, lick granuloma, and house-soiling. A summary table follows each chapter, highlighting the key symptoms and treatments for the condition discussed. The information, practical advice, and treatments are well above average for problem-solving training books. This one deserves a place on every dog trainer's shelf and in every pet owner's home. Highly recommended.?Edell Marie Schaefer, Brookfield P. L., Milwaukee, Wis.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Dog psychology is a relatively new branch of veterinary science. Until 20 years ago, treatment for undesired canine conduct was referred to dog trainers. Dr. Dodman, professor at the renowned Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine, is an expert on domestic animal behavioral and psychological research. His work with problem dogs has led to humane therapies. Rather than putting a beloved pet to sleep for seemingly unchangeable or dangerous behavior, Dodman has diagnosed and successfully treated dogs for aggression, noise phobia, elimination problems, obsessive licking, and separation anxiety. By comparing canine and human brains, he has also prescribed such psychotropic drugs as Prozac and buspirone to medicate behavioral disorders. To get beyond irrational fears of window shades and thunderstorms, desensitization (introducing an animal to something it's afraid of in a slow, systematic manner) is combined with carefully prescribed drugs. After a dog's behavior changes for the better, the medication is often curtailed; generally, none of the undesirable mannerisms returns. Dodman's findings could provide solutions for owners who have nearly given up hope for their unruly dogs. Jennifer Henderson
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; First Edition edition (March 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553101943
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553101942
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.5 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #410,022 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on August 21, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is useful book, but Dr. Dodman's writing style is overly mannered at times and, unfortunately, not nearly as lucid as that of Dr. Oliver Sachs ("The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat"). And it's clear, painfully at times, that this book's packagers are trying to make of Dodman a veterinary version of the famous neurologist.
Although I'll keep this book on my shelf and I'm sure I'll refer to it from time to time, I would recommend two other books first: "The Other End of the Leash," by Patricia McConnell, an ethologist and certified animal behaviorist, and "Understanding 'Dog Mind'" by Bonnie Bergin, the woman who pioneered the "service dog concept. McConnell is a better writer than Dodman (nearly equal to the wonderful if idiosyncratic Elizabeth Marshall Thomas), and Bergin is simply a genius on the subject of canine behavior and training. When I read her book, and I've read dozens on the subject, I kept saying, "This is it; she's really nailed it."
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By A Customer on December 17, 1999
Format: Paperback
Finally a book that discusses crate training an adult dog with separation anxiety instead of an eight week old puppy. If your dog has any psychological/behavioral issues, this is a terrific book to help you with behavior modification, drug therapy, and understanding why your dog is so "strange." This book is worth reading for dog owners as well as potential dog owners. It is a good manuel to have on hand.
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Format: Paperback
Dogs are apparently as screwy as humans. Targeting a general audience of dog enthusiasts, Dr. Dodman discusses a range of canine behavioral problems he has encountered at the Tufts University veterinary school behavior clinic. Although the writing and story-telling are often a bit too simplistic and chatty, the complexity of the problems and treatments are fascinating while remaining comprehensible for the psychological amateur. It is ideal for the owner of a problem dog, or even someone who just wishes to forestall difficulties with their companion. The end of each chapter provides a concise summary of symptoms and treatment options for each disorder discussed (from compulsive licking to inappropriate elimination to aggression of all sorts), which will be of great help for owners and even vets encountering such a behaviorally disordered dog. Additionally, some of the stories are quite funny and make for excellent conversation pieces. I recommend this book as a read for anyone who has, has had, or is thinking about having a dog, as well as every veterinarian interested in gaining knowledge in the field of canine behavior.
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By A Customer on April 12, 2000
Format: Paperback
because this book has a lot of useful information in it. The chapter on separation anxiety (from which the title of the book comes) is great, but many other problem behaviors--aggression, obsessive behaviors--are covered as well. Like another reviewer here, I had a hard time with the fact that Dr. Dodman medicates every dog, but then, these are the most difficult/extreme cases.
The style is very accessible, with little stories about the dogs and then capsule reviews with the salient points of treatment. My only problem with the writing is that Dr. Dodman's ego manages to shine through on every page.
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By A Customer on January 7, 2003
Format: Paperback
My dog was thrust into a new environment with a completely new family life, and he had a few problems adjusting. Add to that the old, now "outdated" teachings of when I originally took him to obedience school, I had inadvertently set him up to fail by creating a competitive environment.
The first chapter of the book "Leader of the Pack" illustrated perfectly our situaion. Applying the lessons in the book have changed everything 100% immediately after implementing the techniques described. No more aggressive behavior, and much happier people and pets.
Look past the writing style and grab hold of the content to get the most out of this book. You'll have to dig a bit in the writings because of the story-like writing style, but the end of each chapter has a very nice summary that is very useful for at-a-glance referencing.
Dr. Dodman also charges a premium for consultations like the ones he references in the book, so the few bucks I spent on this book were well worth it, indeed!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This author has obviously dealt with many dog behavior issues! He has seen it all and offers behavioral solutions as well as indications of medication that may offer help to the helpless. Anyone who thinks medication is "thrown at the dog" is wrong. Dr. Dodman obviously cares, and we know that human beings with psychological issues are very often helped by medications. Why should our beloved dogs be any different.
I loved this book. I learned so much. I learned to not play with flashlight beams with puppies and not encourage those types of behaviors. I learned how to react, and not react, to a dog's fear of loud noises or thunder.
I thank the author and publisher for making this book available and opening the door to the public about dog behavior. I look forward to reading his next book A-Z.
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Format: Paperback
I am really in-tune with my dog, but NEVER realized how much my behavior contributed to my dog's behavioral reactions. Dogs cannot speak like we can, but they have their own way of communicating and/or responding their needs or concerns of past/present traumas or illnesses. Sometimes you think they are being bad, but they are really trying to tell you they are scared or have an oncoming illness that even the vetinerarian cannot presently find. EXCELLENT book to understand dogs and certain breeds. I love and understand my Babalou, a Shephard/Lab mix, even more:) It is a must read and should be read by every dog owner!
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