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No Bad Dogs: The Woodhouse Way Paperback – October 1, 1984

4.1 out of 5 stars 46 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

According to the late Barbara Woodhouse, there are no difficult dogs, only inexperienced owners. In No Bad Dogs she propounds her outspoken beliefs about dog behavior; having trained more than 17,000 dogs and their owners, Woodhouse knows of which she speaks. She isn't shy about condemning bad owners, firmly believing that dogs reflect their masters, habits and all. But this highly regarded book doesn't dwell on the negative; it suggests positive and simple training techniques for any owner and offers hope for all types of dogs, ranging from the chronically phobic to the severely jealous. No Bad Dogs is illustrated throughout with case studies of cured canines.

About the Author

Barbara Woodhouse, "the lady with the dogs", is already familiar to millions of Americans through her appearances on CBS' "60 Minutes" and the U.S. syndication of her enormously popular BBC television series, "Training Dogs the Woodhouse Way". Born in Dublin in 1910 and raised in Oxford, England, Barbara spent three years during the 1930s on a cattle ranch in Argentina where her extraordinary gift with animals enabled her to break in hundreds of wild horses. Married to Dr. Michael Woodhouse on her return to England, where they now live, Barbara has raised three children, run a farm, bred and broken horses, and trained 17,000 dogs on her famous weekend courses which teach perfect obedience to basic commands in only six and a half hours. Her Great Danes, Juno and Junia, made more than 100 film and TV appearances, and her own films, records, television series and books have earned her international popularity.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone (October 1, 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671541854
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671541859
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,505 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This isn't a step-by-step training book. It's an attempt at human adjustment. The author provides clear examples of how people's lack of canine understanding often causes "bad dogs." For example, if you have a neurotic, nervous dog, you shouldn't sympathize with it and coddle it (which only exacerbates the nervousness); you should take control and provide clear leadership, thus building the dog's confidence. Many times the owner's sympathy is the greatest hindrance to proper training, for a dog needs a leader. If you aren't it, the dog will run you.
Woodhouse provides solutions for all sorts of problem behavior such as soiling, jealousy, fighting, barking, and schizophrenia. And she teaches the proper use, and style, of choke chain by which to get the dog's attention without harming it. She provides examples of how she was able, with firmness, encouragement and praise, to create drastic changes within hours in problem dogs brought to her for training. The greatest hindrance to change was the owners themselves seeing their beloved pets manhandled. She also discusses how dogs, being quite telepathic, would often display the phobias and fears of their owners. For example, a woman who hates men may have a dog who hates men, or someone who is an erratic driver may create a dog that hates being in the car.
I quite enjoyed the book and read it in a couple of hours. I came away understanding the "mind" of a dog better, and with that understanding the necessity for firm leadership and a few tips and tricks for getting results.
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Format: Paperback
A friend of ours got incarcerated for drunk driving. This lasted for six months. She had a dog named Maddie who was to be put in a doggie's home. I took the dog. Maddie was a German Shepard mix and a whole lot sweeter than human beings! Everybody loved her. But when I walked her, she would chase after other dogs. And she would howl terribly at them. I got this book at a yard sale. What Woodhouse said in it frightened me a great deal. A CHOKE CHAIN! YELLING AT THE DOG! It was a riculous book. But Woodhouse assured the reader that a choke chain would not hurt the dog or even cause ANY pain (if you did it right). And she also said that the yelling was necessary. I didn't want to yell at Maddie. I don't like people who hit their dogs, not counting their children. But I had to do something. Every 30 min. walk and bathroom session and Maddie would go crazy at some neighbor's fence that had a dog in the yard. Pretty soon, I would avoid certain parts of the
neighborhood in North Hollywood. I bought the choke chain, reluctantly put it on Maddie, and followed Woodhouse's orders. I also used her "voice" technique. When Maddie would go after another dog, I was to yell real loud, "BAD DOG! REAL BAD BAD DOG! " (this once scared a policeman out of his pants! ) Using Woodhouse's advice, the choke chain caused no pain! I examined Maddie's eyes to see if there were any pain as I used it. Nothing at all. She didn't mind it a bit. But you will have to use it as Woodhouse states. Like a flick of the wrist. The next part was rougher. Screaming at Maddie when she would go after other dogs even with the choke chain on. I was also instructed to pet and praise her when she would pass a dog who was barking or just sitting quietly. This took about 20 days.
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Format: Paperback
If you've never trained a dog, start here. Barabara's philosphy is that most dog problems are "owner" problems. That dogs key into what their owners are thinking. That said, Barbara uses corrective training techniques with a choke chain. The current thinking is that you need to also use "reward" based training.
Some trainers use only one of the other. I claim you need to tailor it to the particular dog. Some dogs couldn't care less how much you yank them around by the neck, others will quit behaving after they've had enough treats. Anyway reward based training requires lots of variations in the reward, sometimes its a game of frisbee.
With corrective training you need to assert yourself as the head of the pack. Seems to work well with some dogs, especially those more alpha pack dogs. But all dogs require lots of rewards to be well adjusted. And as you can see from the cover photo Barbara does reward her dogs.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Having had dogs my entire life, I have my own biases and opinions. Some jibe with hers, some don't. We have a pup, now nearly 4 months old, registered German Shepherd, and as we are in our early 60s, probably our last dog. We don't want to make mistakes with her, so have bought several books and are picking the "best" from each. She's extremely intelligent -- per the vet, months ahead of her peers -- so we don't want to make mistakes during this critical time. Are also reading a book about monks that raise German Shepherds for family pets, a book by the Dog Whisperer, and drawing from our experience with a couple of dogs we have had who were exceptionally intelligent and perceptive that have a permanent part of our hearts. She has all that potential and with these books, plus a private trainer (hang the expense, this is our only child and really important to a disabled woman who spends a lot of time alone) we plan to raise the perfect combination of companion and protector of us and our small farm.
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