Making Dogs Happy by Paul McGreevy and Melissa Starling is a must read book if you want to have a better understanding of your relationship with your dog. Based on scientific facts that are made easy to understand by the writing style, you can learn things about the human and dog relationship. They talk about the dog-dog ethogram which are the natural behaviors that dogs understand when they are born. As humans, we introduce our dogs to a lot of behaviors that they have no frame of reference to understand; grooming, nail-clipping, going to the vet, and walking on a leash. When your dog is resistant to these type of interactions we often jump to the conclusion that they are being stubborn, or scared. When in actually, it is a foreign concept to them and they are going to need time to figure out what we are asking of them, and how they are going to react to that request.
In contrast, I was so intrigued by a section that explains that dogs have to do a lot of work in the relationship to understand all of our body language, not to mention our voices. They explain that dogs can communicate volumes with each other just by a look into another dogs eyes. When I was reading this book, my dog came up to me and stood next to me staring into my eyes. She often does this, and I tell her time and time again, that she needs to let me know what she wants. I start listing, food? water? go outside? and see the cat? and eventually she will make a move on the one that seems to be what she wants. After reading this book I feel like I should be honored that she thinks I can read her mind like I am a dog just like she is. Sadly, I haven’t made it to that level yet. With this book I am making progress though!
The book is filled with beautiful photography with a variety of dogs that just want to make you smile. If you have ever wanted to learn more about how to improve your relationship with your dog, Making Dogs Happy will be a guide that will help you. I continue to pick this book up and read a section to further understand, and I know I will be using this as a reference for a long time to come.
Disclosure: Thank you to The Experiment for providing me with a complimentary copy of this e-book for review purposes. No other compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.