“A lovely and clear-headed book on all things dog—emotion, mind, and breed. John Bradshaw’s authority and experience are matched by the thoughtfulness and humanity of his writing. Read this before you bring a dog into your life.”
“Every so often we are reintroduced to an old friend, and we may see them in a new light, reinvigorating a long standing relationship. John Bradshaw reintroduces us to mankind’s oldest friend, the dog. He compiles and explains new information on the origin of dogs, their relationship with ancestral wolves and why we need to base our relationship with dogs on partnership and cooperation, not outmoded theories about dominance. Dogs and dog lovers alike will benefit from Bradshaw’s insight.”
“Bradshaw…provides a well-grounded overview of the Canis family’s evolutionary journey. He also considers dogs’ brainpower, emotional states, sensory capacities and problems that come with breeding for looks rather than temperament. The point of all this science is to lay the foundation for his central thesis…. Ultimately, this is what makes the book so appealing. He does more than simply lay out interesting theories; he uses science to advocate for a better life for companion dogs.”
Dogs have been “man’s best friend” for tens of thousands of years. But despite their valuable role in our lives, dogs today find themselves in a state of crisis throughout the Western world. A century ago most dogs worked for their living, and were bred to be healthy and hard-working, as well as companionable. But in the course of a few decades, many of those carefully-selected attributes became obsolete, and nowadays we breed dogs more for their looks than for their health or suitability as pets. What’s more, we too often treat dogs like wolves or, just as hazardously, like furry humans. The truth is: dogs are neither.
What dogs really need is a spokesperson, someone who will assert their rights, gripes, and specific needs.
In Dog Sense, animal behavior and welfare expert John Bradshaw does just this, using groundbreaking research into human-animal interactions to show us the world from a dog’s perspective. Bradshaw debunks a range of popular dog advice, explaining that, far from being domesticated wolves driven by a need for dominance, dogs are unique creatures that have evolved to socialize—and live in harmony—with other species, most notably our own. Knowing this, we have a fundamental responsibility to our dogs: to respect and accommodate their anatomical and psychological nuances, to breed them with their own welfare in mind, and to treat them with more understanding than widely held—and counterproductive—dominance-based training theories allow.
Eloquent, humane, and filled with valuable advice, Dog Sense aims to appeal as much to dog owners as it does to those interested in understanding the latest science of animal behavior. A penetrating work by a renowned scientist and dog advocate, it is a must-read for any dog lover.