…this technique allows dogs to reach a deeper level of consciousness about themselves, their human companions and their own skills.
Why did I get this book?
I encountered the “Do As I Do” method during one of the lessons in Karolina Westlund’s “Getting Behaviour” course and I was instantly intrigued. The concept is that dogs can learn to imitate our behaviour and that we can use that to teach them new behaviours. How amazing is that? I was super pumped about it, so I looked up Claudia Fugazza and found out that she had written a book about the method, so I jumped at that.
What does this book do?
This book does what it says on the can. It teaches you to teach your dog to do as you do. And that’s amazing. It starts out with a nice little introduction that presents how the concept came into life, with a story about Claudia, her dog and a running water faucet. It then dedicates a section about what social learning is, how it works and how we define imitation behaviours – you can skip this part if you want to get straight to training, but it is interesting stuff, so I’d recommend you read that too.
The rest of the book is a detailed description of the full protocol, including preliminary learning necessary to get started. The protocol is easy to follow and there’s a lot of pictures to help you understand the concept and there’s a full chapter devoted to troubleshooting in case something goes wrong. As an extra bonus, the book comes with a DVD full of demonstrations! It is in Italian though because Claudia is Italian, which can be a bummer, but it’s subbed in English so it’ll be no big deal for most people.
What does this book not do?
You may not be surprised, given my history of reviews, but this book does not teach any basic obedience whatsoever. It does however provide you with a fun foundation to get into teaching your dog handy behaviours and aid you in obedience-related training too. My only regret with this book is that it is printed on glossy pages, which can make reading slightly challenging.
Where do I get this book?
It is available online in several bookstores. I got mine from bookdepository for $25 including shipping. Picture below of Nikuya watching the DVD that comes with the book.