Even though I’ve been training bird dogs for more than 20 years, I still consider myself a student of dog training. There is always more to learn.
Many methods are available to further my education—most of which I’ve tried. One of the best ways is by reading books and I’ve been collecting books on dogs, hunting, dog training and field trials for years. At last count they numbered 65. Some books are quite old and out of print but remain classics. Others are newer and hip to current dog issues. The following are among my favorites.
Be The Pack Leader and Cesar’s Way, by Cesar Millan
These books are definitely our picks for information about what a dogs needs from humans and what humans can expect of dogs.
Beyond Basic Dog Training, by Diane L. Bauman
Excellent book on basic dog obedience.
Bird Dog Training Today and Tomorrow, by Er M. Shelley
This one was published in 1921. Shelley was the first bird dog trainer to exclusively train using planted birds rather than wild birds. He is considered by many to be the “father” of training bird dogs using pigeons. His training ideas have stood the test of time.
Field Trials, by William F. Brown
Describes American field trials, including how they are run, standards of performance, their purpose and more.
How to Speak Dog, by Stanley Coren
How to understand and read your dog’s verbal and non-verbal communications.
New England Grouse Shooting, by William Harnden Foster
The ‘original’ bible of grouse hunting with fine bird dogs and doubles. We especially like his thoughts on grouse dogs in Chapter IV.
Troubles With Bird Dogs (and What To Do About Them), by George Bird Evans
Another classic. While you may agree or disagree with George’s type of grouse dog, he offers actual experiences under the gun from someone who has spent a lifetime hunting ruffed grouse.
Training the Bird Dog, by C. B. Whitford
This book was published in 1908. Whitford offers great insight into the psychology of the bird dog as well as that of the bird dog trainer. While some of his techniques have been outdated, there are many still applicable.