If you’re looking for a comprehensive list of some of the best dog training books available, you’ve come to the right place!

At the School for Dog Trainers, we’re proud to teach a well-rounded curriculum of canine education, covering behavioral science, scent discrimination, principles of search and rescue, and many more topics. Below is the latest list of books students on our Master Dog Trainer program are reading, with suggested reading near the bottom of the page.

how to tame a fox cover

How To Tame A Fox (And Build A Dog)

Lee Alan Dugatkin and Lyudmila Trut

240 pages
ISBN: 978-0226444185

How To Tame A Fox documents the story of a path-breaking experiment in Siberia. Beginning in the late 1950s, two biologists in the former USSR took a few dozen silver foxes and attempted to recreate the evolution of wolves into dogs. 

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dk dog breed book

The Complete Dog Breed Book


352 pages
ISBN: 978-1465491046

This book contains comprehensive information on more than 420 dogs, covering breeds, behavior, care and training advice.

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how dogs learn

How Dogs Learn

Mary R. Burch & Jon S. Bailey

208 pages
ISBN: 978-1630260392

Ever wondered about the practical application of operant conditioning? In How Dogs Learn, the authors explain the science of operant conditioning and use real examples to demonstrate each principle.

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the dog's mind

The Dog’s Mind: Understanding Your Dog’s Behavior

Bruce Fogle

226 pages
ISBN: 978-0876055137

This deep-dive into canine psychology was written by Dr. Bruce Fogle, a veterinary clinician with deep knowledge of research and findings on how a dog’s mind works. The book explores how dogs perceive the world around them, their emotional makeup, and how this influences their behavior.

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the genius of dogs

The Genius of Dogs: How Dogs Are Smarter Than You Think

Brian Hare and Vanessa Woods

384 pages
ISBN: 978-0142180464

A New York Times bestseller, husband-and-wife team Brian Hare and Vanessa Woods provide information on landmark discoveries from around the world. Their collated research helps to explain how man’s best friend actually thinks – and how we can have closer, deeper relationships with dogs.

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the ultimate service dog training manual

The Ultimate Service Dog Training Manual

Keagen J. Grace

280 pages
ISBN: 978-1510703162

This book is an essential resource for service dog handlers and trainers, providing information on the legalities and practicalities of service dogs. 

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scent and the scenting dog

Scent and the Scenting Dog

William G. Syrotuck

112 pages
ISBN: 978-0970049421

The dog’s olfactory system is the component that makes them an ideal candidate for search and rescue missions and detection. This book helps the reader to understand how – and why – a dog can work scent, including an explanation of scent composition and how it works in the dog’s nose.

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k9 scent detection jan kaldenbach

K9 Scent Detection: My Favorite Judge Lives In A Kennel

Jan Kaldenbach

168 pages
ISBN: 978-1550597141

As a police officer for over 30 years in the Netherlands, Jan Kaldenbach had extensive experience working with detection dogs in scent discrimination and drug detection. This book provides detailed instructions for training dogs in scent detection, accompanied by helpful diagrams.

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What The Dog Knows: Scent, Science and the Amazing Ways Dogs Perceive the World

Cat Warren

343 pages
ISBN: 978-1451667325

What The Dog Knows is an incredible insight into the amazing capabilities of dogs – and their noses. This captivating read documents Dr. Warren’s journey with her German Shepherd, Solo – who transforms from a dog-reactive puppy to a cadaver dog. The book also explores the history and current practices of training working dogs.

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How To Right A Dog Gone Wrong: A Road Map For Rehabilitating Aggressive Dogs

Pamela S. Dennison

191 pages
ISBN: 978-1577790754

Combining behavioral science with real-world experience, Pam Dennison’s How To Right A Dog Gone Wrong offers straightforward concepts to help owners and trainers deal with aggressive and reactive dogs. Dennison leans on her experiences with her own dog, Shadow, to offer troubleshooting tips.

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training the disaster search dog

Training the Disaster Search Dog

Shirley M. Hammond

184 pages
ISBN: 978-1929242191

Shirley Hammond is renowned across the globe for her expertise in training disaster search dogs. In this highly-acclaimed guide, she not only focuses on the training required for the dog, but also provides information on the requirements of a handler to partake in disaster search missions.

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Suggested Reading

excelerated learning pamela reid

Excel-erated Learning: Explaining in plain English how dogs learn and how best to teach them

Pamela J. Reid

180 pages
ISBN: 978-1888047073

An expert in animal behavior and with a PhD in Psychology from the University of Toronto, Pamela Reid’s 2013 book explains how dogs think, learn and respond. Excel-erated Learning covers classical and operant conditioning, types of reinforcers, types of stimuli and how to bring everything together as a balanced dog trainer.

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the culture clash

The Culture Clash

Jean Donaldson

257 pages
ISBN: 978-1617811128

Jean Donaldson is a dog behaviorist with over three decades of experience in the field. In The Culture Clash, she shines a light on the complex and sometimes misunderstood relationship between humans and canines.

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Guide to Search and Rescue Dogs

Angela Eaton Snovak

192 pages
ISBN: 978-0764124181

Search and rescue dogs have a valuable role to play in locating missing people in wilderness areas or disaster zones. This book provides an overview of the unique capabilities of SAR dogs and how this helps search and rescue teams in practical scenarios.

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Feisty Fido: Help For The Leash-Reactive Dog

Patricia B. McConnell and Karen B. London

63 pages
ISBN: 978-1891767074

Written by Patricia McConnell and Karen London – both respected ethologists and certified animal behaviorists – this book provides advice on leash-reactive dogs, recommending positive reinforcement techniques to enable dog owners to relax when their pet encounters another dog.

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search and rescue dogs arda

Search and Rescue Dogs: Training the K-9 Hero

American Rescue Dog Association (ARDA)

290 pages
ISBN: 978-0764567032

As the nation’s oldest airscenting search dog organization, ARDA is an authoritative voice in the world of search and rescue. This book provides clear lessons for training your dog for a number of SAR operations, with detailed information on procedures, equipment and safety.

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