Must Read Dog Training Books 2020


With the plethora of options out there for dog training books, I wanted to narrow down the selection to my person favorites. There is A LOT of bad information out there but these books represent the most highly scientific, accurate, and curated information I can provide to you. It’s certainly not exhaustive and I’m adding to my personal library all the time. (Nearly every day it seems!)

The Other End of the Leash by Patricia McConnell – This is one of the first books I read about dogs and I credit it with getting me addicted to learning all about them!

Culture Clash by Jean Donaldson – This book really helped me understand the differences between dogs and humans – but also a lot about the similarities!

Don’t Shoot the Dog! by Karen Pryor – This book was originally written as a psychology book but dog trainers loved it so much because all the material ties directly to our dogs! Learning is learning regardless of the animal and this book clearly outlines how to train anything with a brain – including humans! 😉

Dogs by Raymond Coppinger – One of the most exhaustive works on the history of how dogs became dogs. (It’s not exactly what you think.) In this book, Coppinger visits an island that has a ton of stray dogs. What he learns puts the “Dominance” and “Pack Theory” nonsense in the garbage where it belongs. (That sentence is extra funny if you’ve read the book because dogs are scavengers and really just eat our garbage…)

Before and After You Get Your Puppy by Ian Dunabar – Dr. Dunbar is credited in the industry for bringing back positive training and educating dog trainers by the masses about the real science of dog training. This book is an excellent primer for new and seasoned dog owners alike!

If you read these books, you won’t even need me anymore! Well…hopefully that’s not true, but these books are guaranteed to help you understand your dog better. A client of mine is reading through this list right now (Cheri! That’s you!) and she’s mentioned how much more she understands her dogs now. It’s so eye-opening once we sift through the garbage in the media (reality TV =/= Reality) and start to really look at the science of what makes dogs dogs!