The Art of Raising a Puppy
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The Art of Raising a Puppy

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  1,650 ratings  ·  186 reviews
For more than thirty years the Monks of New Skete have been among America's most trusted authorities on dog training, canine behavior, and the animal/human bond. In their two now-classic bestsellers, How to be Your Dog's Best Friend and THE ART OF RAISING A PUPPY, the Monks draw on their experience as long-time breeders of German shepherds and as trainers of dogs of all br...more
Hardcover, Revised, 352 pages
Published June 29th 2011 by Little, Brown and Company (first published March 20th 1990)
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Cyndie
A wonderful book for talking about puppy behavior in the neonatal stages before owners generally get their pups and talking about the importance of an early upbringing. Excellent book also for some basic training information.

I am wary of some of their dominance-based suggestions for training however. Some of the specific suggestions they recommend including giving breeds such as German Shepherds or Dobermans a "cuff" to the chin if they growl at guests could be dangerous. As a veterinarian we kn...more
Lindsey
The Monks of New Skete breed, train, and raise German Shepherds. This book gives insights on raising a puppy from their perspective, which is interesting but their advice is incomplete and unrealistic for most of us living in the real world, and not in a monastery full of adults who know how to interact with dogs. If you live alone or do not have children, then this book might be helpful to you. The respect and reverance they show for the dog-human relationship is an important focus of the book....more
Stef
While I am okay with anecdotal evidence when training dogs, i found this book difficult to apply to what i need to do with my pup. My biggest pet peeve is doing an alpha roll on a puppy. Sure the dog may respect you, but it will be out of fear and resentment.
Kirsten
I really liked this book. Even if you're not super into the Monks' training methods, there is SO much good information to glean from this about the stages of puppy development, the importance of starting out with a good foundational relationship with your pup to head off behavioral problems down the line, etc. I really like the emphasis on the fact that even when you're not actively training your dog, you're teaching him/her all the time, so you had better make sure you're teaching and encouragi...more
Meghan
This was my first reading of the updated version of this book.

I was first introduced to the Monks of New Skete 20 or so years ago. I had a dog at the time, but not a puppy, so I'm not sure why I read this book then (other than the fact I devoured any and all dog books as a child). And now I remember why they had such a profound impact on my relationships with dogs.

Unlike the conditioning training so popular today (positive methods rely on positive and negative conditioning) the Monks of New Sket...more
C.
Jun 02, 2007 C. rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone wanting to raise a dog
Shelves: animal_behavior
This is my best reference for raising my dogs. The monks have aptly and appropriately emphasized the importance of both reading canine behavior and using praise and corrections that 'speak their language.'

For example, dog mothers do not correct their puppies by saying, "Now Spot, that was not a nice thing to do. I don't like it when you do that so you'll have to stop that, you hear?" This is something I've seen done way too often between human owners and their dogs.

Usually the offending pup (i...more
Dina

Enjoyed understanding how The Monks of New Skete raise puppies. The respect they have for nature and setting the best foundation for puppies is just remarkable. They take raising/breeding a puppy very serious and make the reader stop and think about, why they want a puppy/dog? Do you want companionship? Do you want only protection? Please just get an alarm system. Because a dog is so much more than that.The key is trust through play, discipline and time. There really is nothing as fulfilling as...more
Angela2932
I have very mixed feelings about this book. After being initially enthralled with the Monks approach, I started to think they were not as sweet-natured, Zen-like in their approach as I had hoped. They are more heavy-handed in their approach, with emphasis on choke collars, and Alpha dominance.

However, I did find some of their advice quite helpful, including the idea of using confinement and crate training for puppies, and their house-training schedule using the crate, being taken out, eating an...more
Beth Lind
After I got over the fact that this book wouldn't teach my dog to read, I really enjoyed it. The first half of the book is all about how a puppy is born and develops. There were several 'aha' moments as I read about each stage. Since I do not know anything about the first several months of my puppy's beginnings, it helped me to understand why Clementine has some of the socialization issues she has. It really isn't her fault. The last half of the book gave some great ways to train my dog, and mor...more
Lynda
I didn't finish this book. My husband and I adopted a 4 month old puppy from the shelter; this book is really more for people who are purchasing a puppy from a breeder. It really starts instructions from the day the puppy is born, and makes numerous comments that the most bonding happens with your puppy in the first 4 months of it's life. A little late for us to be reading something like that since our puppy was that age at adoption, and also, in my opinion, not true. We have bonded extremely we...more
Alexandria Godina
So we got a beagle puppy and we named her Olive but right now the name Spaz' seems more fitting. This book was recommended to me and although some parts were really great and helpful i don't think the average dog owner could use the same techniques given here. This books also points to the importance of knowing the breeder of the dog and why rescuing a dog isn't a good idea- which i can understand- and Olive is proof why this isn't a good idea- but i also just don't agree with promoting that mes...more
Leslie
I bought a dog! And everyone says this is THE book! And I bought a dog! And it's true this book is really great! And I bought a dog!

I'm a little excited.

The monks of New Skete are, like, dog GODS, and they raise German Shepherd puppies at their monastery. My dog is a toy poodle, which is very much like a German Sheperd but more wolf-like. (Never thought I'd be a purse dog person. But I live in 700 square feet! What am I gonna get, a malamute?)

So when I bring little Archy home from the breeder at...more
Matt Willden
Great book for those considering a puppy. Great insights into how to channel a puppy's instinctive behavior into a friendly, obedient, and confident companion. I found particular wisdom in some insights into how to "deal with" standard challenges such as indoor urination or excessive leash pulling. I learned that some of the traditional approaches I've seen in the past are counter-productive because they actually reinforce the dog's instinctive behaviors (rubbing its nose in it, getting into a l...more
Lkelly6
Since I have read many books on dog care and training over the years, I feel qualified to say that this is the best book ever on this topic. The monks of New Skete write really well, giving step-by-step instructions on the how to. Then what sets this book apart from all others is the inspiring focus and expression of the spiritual bonding that occurs between a dog and a loving owner. This companionship is what I seek and enjoy with my dogs. This book can show anyone how to develop this deep conn...more
Carey
I either want a German Shepherd pup or a Monk of New Skete. These guys know their dogs! This book is a great review for those who know dogs and a thorough start for newbies. Although some techniques seem a little outdated, I was really impressed by the endearing approach the Monks take with dog training. This book helped me a lot with Mingus. (More than my uptight Doggie Kindergarten!)
Jennifer Baum
After reading Cesar Millan's book on puppies, this book felt dated. For example, they say to let your puppy ride in the car without a crate. Also to let her wander and sniff your entire home right away and watch from a distance. I strongly disagree with both points, and feel wiser from the Dog Whisperer's book. Start there and you'll have an awesome dog!
Shawna
This is a thorough book about puppy growth. I enjoyed reading before we got the puppy. But trying to read it during the puppy raising was too much. I would be reading about different stages than the puppy was actually in. I did not grasp the training system. We have since switched to a more praise based training.
Abby
Outdated and unnecessarily harsh methods of training. Time to move onto gentler and more effective practices, monks! My full review here: http://thedoggerel.wordpress.com/2011...
Sharon
Read this before I knew better, meaning before I knew about positive reinforcement. For its time this was an okay book but even the monks realized it needed to updated.
Chrissie
This is an excellent book on raising and training a puppy! It is written with the idea that training should be done in a gentle, kind manner but nevertheless with authority. It recognizes that dogs are individuals and that you must fit your trainin to your puppy's individual character. You must learn to read the character of your dog. Temperament testing is discussed. Brutal, hard punishment is not necessary to train a dog. Nevertheless, you must remain the alpha figure. You are the boss, not yo...more
Nick
I read this book two years ago before purchasing my first dog. By the time I put it down it had sticky notes sticking out of it right and left and the pages were covered in little notes. So much good information. It has information about picking the puppy with the right temperment to you, breeds, finding a breeder, adopting older dogs, younger dogs, from the shelter, brining a new dog home. The list goes on.

The book is written by the Monks of New Skete who combine spirituality with dog training...more
Beth
Okay, if you're going to get a puppy---get this book first. Don't bother to read it from cover to cover but jump around. Of course, it does help to actually have read the whole book, but the order isn't important. Whether you begin with the case studies or open the book at the page where they give a house-training schedule (p. 117)---it doesn't matter. It's all good stuff.
The Monks breed and raise German Shepherds (for companion dogs) and have spent a lot of time observing dogs and raising puppi...more
James
You shouldn't depend on just one book as a resource for anything, but if you were to...

Obviously this focuses on the earlier years of your dog -- relating their trials and tribulations and bringing context to all the strange behaviors some see as "bad" and "good". In some ways, I think this early life focus is more valuable than a general purpose dog book, it really dives into more of the details of the why behind behaviors which can be valuable in judging your dog and deciding how to work with...more
I-Ching
There was good information offered in this book. As a first-time parent of a puppy, I've been doing my research and studying - and learning along the way. I understand that their training methods are vigorous; they are also breeders (of dogs!) and monks, so I took what inspiration I could from the book.

I initially gave the book 3 stars, but I came back and made it 4 stars because of the interview with Maurice Sendak in the last chapter. His words bolstered me more than anything in this new puppy...more
John P
Although I thought the 1991 edition was the Seminole book on raising a puppy, the revised 2011 edition is better, taking in account changes in technology, veterinarian medicine, food, and training over the 20-year period from the first edition. I am about to embark on raising a new puppy, and this will be my guide as the 1991 edition was in the past.
Catie
Sep 04, 2008 Catie rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: current and prospective dog and puppy owners
Shelves: puppy-shelf
I think this book is probably a must have for any complete dog training library. I only wish that someone would have recommended it to me long ago. I have been in the contemplative stage of dog adoption for a very long time. I really would have benefited from this book before I actually brought home a pup which my boyfriend and I did on August 23rd. I have still learned alot from the book even though I do not agree with everything that the monks recommend. Also, they do recommend many things to...more
Margotreynolds
I enjoyed the philosophy of this book. Other reviewers have noted the alpha dominance and the discipline methods in this book. I appreciate both. Dogs aren't human. With our first Weim, now 11, we toed the line between dominance and gentleness. The result is a dog more socialized to humans than dogs, and whose intelligence makes her question dominance and commands. She is a wonderful dog. Over the years I've made it a point to be the pack leader, to borrow from Cesar Milan. I do think the scruff...more
Travis
Great book for all kinds of tips on puppies. I have learned a great deal from this book, but I do have some discrepancies on techniques. All that aside, these monks spend an incredible amount of time with the dogs and have a keen awareness of dog psychology. I would highly recommend it for anyone getting a puppy, or people who are training a young dog.

I got this book when my pup was 5 weeks old. I was half way done the book when Py was 9 weeks old and I had the book in the back of my car. I was...more
Tina
Interesting and informative. This books takes you through the whelping process and the first few months of puppy life. W/r/t specific training practices, however, it's not my favorite approach -- the monks don't believe in using treats as motivation, and although their tactics are generally kind and nonviolent, they do employ some "corrections" (such as giving a puppy a "shakedown" by the scruff of its neck) that I'm not totally comfortable with. After reading Paul Owens, I tend to agree with hi...more
Shannon
Great book about puppies. It really makes so much sense and the book was hard to put down (which is hard to believe since it's about dog training). Just a great philosophy that I cannot wait to put in use. I would definitely recommend this to anyone with a puppy on the horizon.
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