Saturday, March 21, 2015

Book Review: Decoding Your Dog

Decoding Your Dog by the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists (ACVB) brings you explanations of dog behavior to help you understand your own dog. ACVB members have to meet specific criteria and must pass a test in order to be Board Certified in this specialty. Members are in practice, some members are also researchers, all of them are dedicated to staying on top of the latest research in order to bring it to their patients, often consulted by veterinarians in practice when they need expert advice on a case. Many veterinarians will send their clients out for a consultation with an ACVB member if there is one within driving distance. There are other behaviorists but these members must also be veterinarians. The letters after a veterinarian's DVM or VMD, DACVB means that they are a Diplomat of the American College of Veterinary Behaviorist.

Each of the 14 Chapters was written by one or two Veterinary Behaviorists, an assortment from the U.S. and Canada. The book was edited by Debra F. Horowitz, DVM, DACVB and John Ciribassi, DVM, DACVB with Steve Dale. Unmentioned but credited by Steve Dale is editor Beth Adelman. I have no idea why her name doesn't appear prominently since the description of what she did certainly deserved it.

Written by professionals for pet owners, although some veterinarians may also want a copy in their library, Decoding Your Dog gives pet owners an opportunity to learn about various dog behaviors. Why does my dog to this? Now you'll have your answer, whether it's Separation Anxiety or Aggression, Housetraining Problems. This book runs the gamut.

What I found most impressive is the definitive stand on positive training and why its more effective. You know I talk about it repeatedly. Now you can get the information straight from the veterinary behaviorists with studies to back them up.

Many of my favorite veterinary behaviorists appear in this book. You'll learn how to choose a dog, how to "read" your dog, and you'll learn about psychopharmacology.There's also a Glossary of Terms. At the end of each chapter is a box summarizing what you've learned, very much recognizable to those of you who own a copy of my Angell Memorial Animal Hospital Book of Wellness and Preventive Care for Dogs. It's something I think is very helpful for dog owners who are just learning about each topic.

Decoding Your Dog has been in my personal library for awhile. I think it should be in yours, too.

The book, originally published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt  is 384 pages in hardcover. It can be purchased in Hardcover, Paperback or e-Book format. Price will vary by format and point of purchase. It can be purchased wherever books are sold. 

Here's a link to the Decoding Your Dog

Here is a link to the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists:

Note: I received a Review Copy of this book. I was not compensated in any other way. The opinion expressed in this review is mine alone.


Gordon Brice said...

Wonderful review, Darlene and, if you have it in your library, the book must be very good.

Darlene said...

Thank you, Gordon. I'm glad you enjoyed the review!