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What to Look for When Buying a Dog Trick Training Book

Training a dog to do a trick is not always the easiest thing in the world.  In such a case, I generally turn to a book.  I have a few dog trick training books that have helped me.  Let’s be clear too, we’re not talking about basic training like sit, stay, heel.  We’re talking about roll-over, play dead, dance, beg, etc.

There are tons of dog trick books out there, so how do you choose which one to buy?  My suggestions:

  • Make sure there are illustrations or pictures, and many of them.  It’s not always obvious what the author means when they describe an action.
  • See how many tricks the book is promoting that you can teach your dog.  I’d say anything under 25-30 isn’t worth it.
  • Consider a book that comes with a VHS/DVD or perhaps purchasing one directly.  Seeing live video can only help.
  • Have you ever seen the “… For Dummies” books?  There is a dog tricks for dummies book available (see our Dog Books page for a link to a store that sells it) and it is great.  Look for any “For Dummies” books you can find.
  • Does it tell you some of the tricks it will teach? If not, move on.
  • Any training book that comes with something for free, like a clicker (for training purposes) is good, just be sure it follows the above guidelines.

Whichever book you choose, make sure to have FUN when you’re training your dog to do these tricks – after all, isn’t that the point?


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