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POSITIVE TRAINING FOR SHOW DOGS by Vicki Ronchette

review by: Jan Irving 2009-01-21


A reasonably slim volume, Ronchette runs a training business and shows her own dogs. She is an advocate for 'positive training' and uses a clicker - so if you need to see how these ideas and tools can work for the show dog, this is the title for you.

The material covered is basic, Ronchette could easily step up to more advanced principles and finesse in the art of positive training (no jerking, yanking, prodding, bullying style of training), but the book is a good primer for those that should have already figured this was the way to train dogs but haven't quite figured how they can.
I was rather startled by how many frightened dogs Ronchette indicates make it into the American show ring, but on the flip side I was also pleased to see she wasn't offering instant fixes to ingrained problems.
The title is ideal for newcomers to exhibition, and great for those wanting to leave the lead jerking philosophy behind, which I hope all are.
There are a few typographical errors, but possibly the average reader won't notice.
The procedural notes are a bit mundane, but I have read a lot on positive training in recent times, and sometimes scant, but there is enough there to whet your appetite. I was pleased to see Ronchette discuss the practice of 'tipping' the dog off the show table to frighten it into standing still, neither of us condone such techniques.
Reading the examples and notes also gives you an interesting insight into the show world in the states.


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