Books and Videos We Recommend

There are a great deal of books and videos on dogs and dog training. Quite frankly, many of them are pretty "antiquated" in their approach and are not very good. We do not recommend a book or video if it suggests physically punishing your dog in any form. We do not recommend books and videos that advocate choke collars, prong collars, shock collars, or the "alpha rollover." We believe these training tools and methods are unnecessary and have great potential to harm you and your dog. 


Books Every New Puppy or Dog Owner Should Read

 Every new dog or puppy owner should read a basic training book and there are two that top our list; The Power of Positive Dog Training, by Pat Miller and The Thinking Dog: Crossover to Clicker Training, by Gail T. Fisher. Since communication is such an important part of living with a dog I also recommend that all dog and puppy owners read On Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming Signals, by Turid Rugaas. Lastly, if the dog will be living with children I also recommend that they read Living with Kids and Dogs…Without Losing You Mind: A Parent’s Guide to Controlling the Chaos, by Colleen Pelar.

Dog Behavior

Dogs: A new Understanding of Canine Origin, Behavior and Evolution, Raymond and Lorna Coppinger, University of Chicago Press, 2001, An evolutionary biologist and dog lover, Coppinger outlines the likely process which resulted in the longstanding canine-human relationship.

Dominance: Fact or Fiction, Barry Eaton, 2002, A summary of the newest research on dominance theory, and why it is no longer a good model for canine behavior.

Dominance Theory and Dogs Version 1.0, James O’Heare, DogPsych Publishing, 2003, A discussion of dominance theory and how it applies to canine behavior.

For the Love of A Dog Understanding Emotion in You and Your Best Friend, Patricia B. McConnell, Ph.D, Ballantine Books, 2005, 2006, A superb review of emotions in both dogs and their people and how they bring us together and can rip us apart. Once again Dr. McConnell helps us to better understand our dogs and in doing so have the best possible relationship with them.

On Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming Signals, Turid Rugaas, Dogwise Publishing, 2006, An excellent book on understanding a dog’s body language. Includes descriptions of how you can use your own body language to better communicate with your dog.

Stress in Dogs, Martina Scholz and Clarissa von Reinhardt, Dogwise Publishing, 2007, This book outlines the physiology of stress in dogs, signs of stress, and how to make your dog's life less stressful. It emphasizes that more activity and involvement in dog sports is often not the answer to reducing stress in dogs but can be a major contributing factor. This book is a must read for anyone with an anxious or hyper dog.

The Culture Clash, Jean Donaldson, James & Kenneth Publishers, 2005. An exciting book by an outstanding dog trainer and one of Don’s favorites. Donaldson makes a powerful case for thinking in terms of behavior modification rather than the older and more anthropomorphic dominance models of dog training. Includes an excellent section on operant conditioning. Winner of the Dog Writer Association of America’s “Best Behavior Book” award for 1997.

The Other End of the Leash – Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs, Patricia B. McConnell, Ph.D, Ballantine Books, 2002, An information-packed, immensely readable book. In it you will learn how to have a better relationship with your dog through better communications. Dr. McConnell clearly explains the manners in which dogs and their people communicate. [Green Acres Price - $14.95]


Dog Training - Basic

Clicker Fun, Deborah Jones, Ph.D., Howln Moon Press, 1998. An excellent introduction to clicker training through the teaching of tricks and games. If you have a dog trained by conventional means, this book is a great way to get started with clicker training.

Click Here! For A Well-Trained Dog, Deborah Jones, Ph.D., Howln Moon Press, 2002, A compact manual covering the basics of learning theory, the mechanics of clicker training, and the essentials of a healthy, polite canine companion. This book provides an understanding of how to train a dog with a clicker, and why it is reasonable and appropriate to do so,

Clicker Training for Dogs, Karen Pryor, Sunshine Books, 2005. This booklet is ideal for those of you looking for a quick, easy introduction to clicker training. It outlines the basics in simple steps while providing you with an understanding of the fundamental concepts. It includes specific exercises for teaching Sit, Down, Recall and Walking Politely.

Don’t Shoot the Dog - The New Art of Teaching and Training (2nd edition), Karen Pryor, Bantam Books, 1999. A pioneering book using shaping to change behavior in animals - dogs, cats, even humans.

Labrador Retrievers for Dummies, Joel Walton & Eve Adamson, Howell Book House, 2000. A superb book on Labs as well as dogs in general. Any dog owner or prospective dog owner can learn a great deal from this book on finding the right dog, training the dog and keeping them healthy.

Positive Perspectives, Pat Miller, Dogwise Publishing, 2003. A collection of the author’s columns from The Whole Dog Journal and Your Dog, this book offers excellent advice on training and happily living with your dog.

Positive Puppy Training Works, Joel Walton, CPDT, David & James Publishers, 2002, A wonderful primer on using positive reinforcement and smart management to raise the puppy everyone wants. Joel offers great tips on establishing a relationship, managing the puppy, housetraining, play biting and chewing. A great starter book for the new family with a new puppy or for someone thinking about getting a puppy.

The Power of Positive Dog Training, Pat Miller, Howell Book House, 2001. I have been reading Pat Miller’s articles in the Whole Dog Journal for years and have loved everything she has written. She is a skilled and compassionate dog trainer who really knows how to communicate to dog owners through her writing. This book is a superb “basic dog book” for anyone with a dog, and I highly recommend it.

The Thinking Dog: Crossover to Clicker Training, Gail T. Fisher, Dogwise, 2009, This book is a great introduction for those who have trained a dog in the past but are new to clicker training, as well as those new to both.

Your Outta Control Puppy, Teoti Anderson, TFH, 2003. A must read for all people who have recently obtained or are considering adding a puppy to their family; not just those who are struggling with a young, misbehaving canine companion.

The Dog Whisperer, Paul Owens with Norma Eckroate, Adams Media Corp., 2007. This book emphasizes a compassionate, nonviolent approach to dog training. It offers great advice on building a relationship with your dog and shows you how to teach your dog all of the basics they need to be a great companion.

Dog Training – Specialty

Clicker Gundog (Learning about Dogs), Helen Phillips, Sunshine Books, 2006. First published in England this book details how to train a gun dog with a clicker and positive reinforcement,

Living with Kids and Dogs…Without Losing You Mind: A Parent’s Guide to Controlling the Chaos, Colleen Pelar, C&R Publishing, 2005, Quite simply this is the best book available on dogs and children. If you have a kid and a dog, have a kid and are thinking of getting a dog, or have a dog and are expecting a child, you need to read this book!

Positive Gun Dogs – Clicker Training for Sporting Breeds, Jim Barry, Mary Emmen, & Susan Smith, Sunshine Books, 2007. This is the first book on using force-free training methods for hunting dogs to be published in the USA. It will teach you how to train your dog in a systematic and effective manner with positive reinforcement.

Cat Behavior & Training

Training Your Cat, Dr. Kersti Seksel, Hyland House Publishing, 1999. Written by an Australian veterinarian, this book is an excellent primer on cat behavior, care and training. While many people think cats cannot be trained, this book demonstrates exactly how easy training a cat can be.

Pet Health and Nutrition

Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs and Cats,  Richard Pitcairn, DVM and Susan Pitcairn, Rodale, 2005. An excellent introduction to holistic and complementary healthcare for pets.

Natural Nutrition for Dogs and Cats - The Ultimate Diet, Kymythy Schultze, Hay House, 1998. A superb introduction to feeding your dog or cat, fresh food prepared by you.

See Spot Live Longer, Steve Brown and Beth Taylor, Creekobear Press, 2004. The first book that finally ties together the common sense holistic nutrition advice with the scientific research to back it up. A must read!

Unlocking the Canine Ancestral Diet, Steve Brown, Dogwise, 2009, Brown’s second book provides further data on what our dogs need nutritionally to thrive. The book includes a simple plan for improving your dog’s diet in as little as one day a week. While Brown discusses raw diets he also provides alternatives to improving your dog's diet without feeding raw.

The First Aid Companion for Dogs & Cats, Amy D. Shojai, Rodale Press, 2001. This is one of those books every pet guardian should have. It provides a quick reference to over 150 everyday accidents and emergencies in an easy to use format.


Calming Signals: What Your Dog Tells You – Turid Rugaas, Dogwise Publishing, 2005. A companion to the book On Talking Terms with Dogs, this tape/DVD provides excellent visual examples of how dogs use calming signals and how you can use them with your dog.

Magazines & Newsletters

The Whole Dog Journal
A monthly guide to natural dog care and training
PO Box 420235
Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235


Check the Green Acres website for a complete and current list of websites that we recommend.

Green Acres

Green Acres Website –

Green Acres FaceBook –

Bach Flowers for Pets Website-

Bach Flowers for Pets FaceBook -

Woof Meow Show FaceBook –

Friends of Furry Friends Food Bank FaceBook -

Boarding and Daycare

International Boarding and Pet Services Association (IBPSA) - &

Complementary/Alternative Veterinary Care

Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy -

American Academy of Veterinary Acupuncture -

American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association -

Bach Flowers for Pets -

Bach Foundation Registered Practitioner Animal Specialists -

Chi Institute - Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine -

Dr. Edward Bach Centre -

International Alliance for Animal Therapy and Healing -

International Veterinary Acupuncture Society -

The Natural Animal Centre (UK) -

Dog Training and Behavior Organizations

Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) - &

APDT Trainer Search -

Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT) -

International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC) - &

 IAABC Consultant Search -

Dog Training and Behavior Articles and Videos

Alpha Status & Dominance

American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior 2009. AVSAB Position Statement on the Use of Dominance Theory in Behavior Modification of animals

Association of Pet Dog Trainers 2009. APDT Position Statement on Dominance and Dog Training

Association of Pet Dog Trainers 2009. Dominance Myths and Dog Training Realities

Bradshaw J.W.S., Blackwell E.J., Casey R.A. 2009. Dominance in domestic dogs - useful construct or bad habit? Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research

Green Acres Kennel Shop - Dominance: Reality or Myth

Green Acres Kennel Shop Position on the Use of Dominance and Punishment for the Training and Behavior Modification of Dogs

Mech L.D. 1999. Alpha Status, Dominance, and Division of Labor in Wolf Packs. Canadian Journal of Zoology

Mech L.D. 2008. Whatever happened to the term alpha wolf? International Wolf

Overall, Dr. Karen - Dumbed down by dominance, Part 1, DVM News Magazine, March 2012

Overall, Dr. Karen - Dumbed down by dominance, Part 2, DVM News Magazine, April 2012

Ryan, David. 2010. Why Won’t “Dominance” Die? Association of Pet Behaviour Counselors

Welfare in Dog Training - What's wrong with using 'dominance' to explain the behaviour of dogs?

Welfare in Dog Training - So how do we explain social behavior?

Welfare in Dog Training - Should I follow status reduction programmes with my dog?

Behaviors That People Don't Like

Canine Mounting: An Overview

Body Language

Calming Signals - Turid Rugaas

Poster - Body Language of Fear in Dogs - Dr. Sophia Yin

Poster - How Kids Should and Should Not Interact with Dogs - Dr. Sophia Yin

Poster - How to correctly greet a dog - Dr. Sophia Yin

Video - How Kids Should Greet Dogs - Dr. Sophia Yin

Video - Why Dogs Bite and What to Avoid - Dr. Sophia Yin

Clicker Training

Clicker Solutions

Canid Domestication

Canid Domestication - The Farm Fox Experiment

Kids & Dogs

Poster - How Kids Should and Should Not Interact with Dogs - Dr. Sophia Yin

Poster - How to correctly greet a dog - Dr. Sophia Yin

Video - How Kids Should Greet Dogs - Dr. Sophia Yin

Video - Why Dogs Bite and What to Avoid - Dr. Sophia Yin

Punishment In Training - Why It's Unnecessary and Often Detrimental

Blackwell, Emily J., Twells, Caroline Anne, Seawright, Rachel A. Casey. 2008. The relationship between training methods and the occurrence of behavior problems, as reported by owners, in a population of domestic dogs. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research, - Acres Kennel Shop Position on the Use of Dominance and Punishment for the Training and Behavior Modification of Dogs -

Herron M.E., Shofer F.S., Reisner I.R. 2009. Survey of the use and outcome of confrontational and non-confrontational training methods in client-owned dogs showing undesired behaviors. Applied Animal Behavior Science,

Hiby, E.F., Rooney, N.J., Bradshaw, J.W.S., 2004. Dog training methods—their use, effectiveness and interaction with behaviour and welfare. Anim. Welfare - in Training - Position of the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior -

 Welfare in Dog Training - What are the implications of training techniques which induce fear or pain in dogs? -

Shock Collars

An Open Letter from Dr. Karen Overall on Shock Collars -

Are Shock Collars Painful or Just Annoying to Dogs? A 2004 Study Reveals Some Answers - Dr. Sophia Yin -

Association of Pet Behaviour Counselors Press Release on Shock Collars - -

Can Aggression in Dogs Be Elicited Through the Use of Electronic Pet Containment Systems? -

Considerations for shock and 'training' collars: Concerns from and for the working dog community - Dr. Karen Overall -

Dog Trainer & Author Pamela Dennison on Invisible Fences -

Kennel Club Calls to Ban Shock Collars -

On Shocking Our Dogs - Trish King - dogs with help of the shock collar: short and long term behavioural effects - &

Pressure Necrosis/Burns from shock collar used with underground fence system -

Shock - Say-No -

The use of Electric Shock Collars vs. Other Training Methods: Efficacy, Stress, and Welfare Concerns, Kristy Englert -

Vets on Behavior Proclaim: Never Use A Shock Collar – How to Choose A Dog Trainer -Steve Dale -

Socialization and Habituation

Puppy Socialization - Position of the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior -


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