Training the Best Dog Ever: A 5-Week Program Using the Power of Positive Reinforcement

Training the Best Dog Ever: A 5-Week Program Using the Power of Positive Reinforcement

by Dawn Sylvia-Stasiewicz, Larry Kay


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Training the Best Dog Ever, originally published in hardcover as The Love That Dog Training Program, is a book based on love and kindness. It features a program of positive reinforcement and no-fail techniques that author Dawn Sylvia-Stasiewicz used to train the White House dog, Bo Obama, and each of Senator Ted Kennedy’s dogs, among countless others.

Training the Best Dog Ever relies on trust and treats, not choke collars; on bonding, not leash-yanking or reprimanding. The five-week training program takes only 10 to 20 minutes of practice a day and works both for puppies and for adult dogs that need to be trained out of bad habits. Illustrated with step-by-step photographs, the book covers hand-feeding; crate and potty training; and basic cues—sit, stay, come here—as well as more complex goals, such as bite inhibition and water safety. It shows how to avoid or correct typical behavior problems, including jumping, barking, and leash-pulling. Plus: how to make your dog comfortable in the world—a dog that knows how to behave in a vet’s office, is at ease around strangers, and more. In other words, the best dog ever.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780761168850
Publisher: Workman Publishing Company, Inc.
Publication date: 09/25/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 56,787
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.80(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Larry Kay, a Los Angeles-based award-winning writer, is Leader of the Pack at Positively Woof, which celebrates the human-animal bond. In addition to co-authoring Training the Best Dog Ever, he created the award-winning Animal Wow dog care DVD for kids. He has written for Dog Fancy magazine and AOL's Paw Nation. His writing credits include PBS documentaries, educational films for the New York City Board of Education, and children’s edutainment software for Disney and The Muppets. Larry Kay's website is

Dawn Sylvia-Stasiewicz trained Bo Obama and each of Senator Ted Kennedy’s Portuguese Water Dogs. She was a professional dog trainer for more than 20 years, ran the popular Merit Puppy dog training classes, and trained and boarded animals for the Washington elite.

Table of Contents

Foreword to the New Edition ix


The Call xii

The Basics

Chapter 1 My Approach to Training 3

Chapter 2 Preparing for Dog Training 17

The Fundamentals Program

Chapter 3 Feeding, Potty Training, and Crating 43

Chapter 4 Week One: Fundamentals Training Program 63

Chapter 5 Week Two: Training in Everyday Life 81

Chapter 6 Week Three: Advancing to Verbal Cues 95

Chapter 7 Week Four: Completing the Foundation 111

Chapter 8 Week Five: Reviewing the Basic Skills 129

Chapter 9 Training Games and Activities 141

The Next Steps

Chapter 10 Clicker Training and Dog Tricks 153

Chapter 11 Behavior Problems 185

Chapter 12 Your Dog in the World 215


Appendix 1 Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Certificate Test Prep Course 234

Appendix 2 Specialized Training 241

Appendix 3 Training logs 255

Acknowledgments 266

Index 269

About the Authors 288

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