dog & horse books: breeding, training, showing, judging, performance





    Alpine Publications specializes in publishing 
  dog books and horse books.
  You can order the best puppy training books,
retriever training books,
horse training and anatomy books from our store.

Alpine Publications has produced a comprehensive line of equine and canine care books for over three and a half decades. We are trusted leaders in this area. Our various publications include information about training, behavior, breeds and breeding, young animals, performance and competition events, hunting, and herding, among other topics. No matter what you need to know, you are sure to find the appropriate information in one of the best puppy training books or horse anatomy books that we have to offer. While a number of our titles sell well, our retriever training books are particularly popular among people whose dogs fall into that classification.  


Get Better Results by Making Dog Training Fun

Most dogs, especially young puppies, love to play. If given the chance, dogs will run and chase a companion nipping ears and rumps or tails, jumping over each other, and wrestling on the ground. As a trainer, you can adapt these play forms to help guide your puppy or dog to be a happy and motivated companion.

Since each breed has a higher or lower prey drive, and individuals within those breeds vary, take the time to learn what motivates your puppy. Herding breeds, sporting dogs and terriers have a higher prey drive than the toy and non-sporting breeds, so are usually more easily engaged in play. But those with lower play drive can also learn how to have fun. You as the owner and trainer need to learn what makes your puppy crazy. Is it a ball, the fuzzy psychedelic monster, the squeaky raccoon, or a tug rope? Or does he really love food?

Make sure that when you interact with your puppy you are doing things that he enjoys rather than what you enjoy, especially if he has a low prey drive. When playing with your puppy, put all of your focus on him. Don’t think of all of the things that you need at the grocery store or which kid needs to be picked up after practice. Pay attention to your dog and make sure he is the most important thing at that moment.

The more energy you put into being exciting and interesting, the more your puppy will respond to you in a positive, energetic way. Be fun, spontaneous, silly and uninhibited. Run crazy through the house or yard, clapping your hands or dancing as you go. Jump up and down, roll on the ground in a ball or roll down a hill. When he’s not looking, hide behind a tree or building and encourage him to find you. Run down the hall or stairs. Hide behind furniture or doors. Toss a ball down the hallway and while he is going to get it, hide in one of the rooms. Get down on your hands and knees and wiggle a toy in front of him, growling playfully. Encourage him to crawl over and under your legs. Mimic other puppies by gently and playfully poking him or rolling him over and scampering off a short distance, which is a doggy version of an invitation to play.

Add in treats or toys as you play. Hide a toy under an empty pot or toss it down the hallway. This encourages his tracking and retrieving instincts. Hold him back for just a few seconds before releasing him to go after the toy or treat. This will build up his excitement; just make sure you don’t frustrate him. Use his natural instincts of chasing, scenting, shredding and stalking whenever you can. Make sure to encourage his chase instinct by running away from him more than to him. Tie his toy to a string, fishing pole or stick and drag or roll it around to encourage him to chase.

Now begin adding commands to your play. When he lies down, tell him “good down!” When he finds his treat or toy tell him “good find!” If he jumps over your legs, tell him “good over!” Love on him and let him know he’s a great, smart puppy. Make sure you use a happy, animated voice to keep his interest up. As you consistently associate specific names to each of his toys or actions, you will be surprised to find how quickly he has learned them and is begging for more.

Keep in mind that, just like with people, dogs dislike always being the loser, so set up your play so that your dog has his fair share of winning. Otherwise he most likely will decide that playing with you is no fun and will only give half-hearted attempts or quit playing altogether. For example, when you toss a toy for him to retrieve, run with him but let him get it first. Make a big fuss over him but don’t touch the toy or ball for at least a half a minute or so. Let him enjoy his moment.


If you can consistently incorporate fun while training, both you and your dog will find that you look forward to training time. Explore different ways to encourage the use of his natural instincts and play/prey drive. Invent ways to teach the various commands while playing. Pay attention to what your dog seems to respond best to and make sure you include this in his training. Always make training fun, exciting and interesting. To him, he is playing and what is better than that?


For more on play training your dog, we recommend Building Blocks for Performance by Bobbie Anderson and Tracy Libby.




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