Countless books have been written and illustrated on dog training. Some are very serious manuals, with professional, no-nonsense attitudes and instructions, accompanied by photos of elite-looking models (both handlers and canines).
There are also those that focus mainly on new puppy behavior and toilet training.
Then there are the lighter instructional manuals with a humorous slant, illustrated with humorous caricatures.
While all of the above may have good points and values, the authors may fall short of providing some important ingredients needed – the combination of respect, understanding, love and compassion for the dog; the need to be firm and consistent with the dog; and the ability to convey to the dog, and the handler, what is expected of them, for the benefit of both the owner and the pet.
When Amy Glaser, acquisitions editor at Voyageur Press, asked Tammie Rogers to author a guide book for 4-H obedience dog training, she was tapping into the experience and knowledge of an author with all of those qualifications and much more. This request was quite an honor, as 4-H is a community of 6 million young people across America.
A Little History
Tammie Rogers has taught 4-H kids (and adults) dog obedience classes for several years, with award-winning results – the proof is in the pudding.
She began training dogs professionally part-time in 1985. She left a 20-year career as a biologist in corporate America to pursue professional dog training full-time in 2002. She has many prestigious accreditations.
She and her husband, Robert, own and operate DARNFAR Ranch in rural Brownstown, where they hold professional dog training services.
Robert served in the Marine Corps for 10 years, and joined Tammie as a professional dog trainer in 2002. Tammy is also a certified instructor for pet first aid/CPR.
Tammie said there have been other comprehensive dog training books written for 4-H use, but this was the first opportunity to share her knowledge in this way.
And she is pleased with the result.
The book Rogers wrote,“4-H Guide – Dog Training & Dog Tricks,” is a comprehensive, attractive book with easy-to-read, step-by-step instructions. It features corresponding color photos showing the correct stance and behavior of both the dog and the owner.
The “models” for the photos are local 4-H members and their dogs, all of whom were students of the fair preparation obedience classes taught by Tammie. There are also photos of adults and their pets that participated in the regular obedience classes that Tammie teaches.
Her husband shot all the photographs in the book. Acknowledged in the book are those who participated in the photo illustrations: Kayleigh Magnus and Snowbelle; Sara Milburn and Shania; Caleb Moody and Dusty; Faith Moreland and James; Dereck Niemeyer and Rocky; Sydney Rosborough and Sadie; Lisette Ehrat and Adair; and Jane Shipma and Ace. Trisha Buzzard and Caroline were also acknowledged for their time, although due to a lighting issue, no photographs could be taken.
The introduction sets the tone for the book, beginning candidly with Tammie’s own early experiences and her musing that, “Training a dog is very much like parenting a child. However, we cannot forget that our pet dogs are not human. They are a species developed by man. So unique they are, and so similar they are to us, and yet, so different, too.”
This book is designed to introduce methods that are useful for common obedience commands, including those exhibited at 4-H competitions and AKC obedience trials. It will also explain how to teach your dog a variety of tasks and fun tricks.
The book begins with the different training methods, the types of tools used (collar selection, lead), manners, the basics, competition skills and trick training. It also goes into more advanced training for useful skills, such as those taught to service dogs. The reader, whatever age, is walked through the instructions.
The book will be an invaluable help to the 4-H kids involved in training and showing their dogs.
Tammie was chosen to write and illustrate this book, and it is obvious she put into it not only her expertise, knowledge and understanding of dogs, but also her heart for them, and wanting to help people have faithful, obedient, pets and enjoyable, satisfactory, affectionate and respectful relationships for both the pets and their owners.
The conclusion, like the introduction, reveals the personality of Tammie, and the last paragraph of the book will touch the heart of anyone who has ever known the affection and devotion of a dog.
Tammie Rogers will be present for a book signing at Rural King in Vandalia on Saturday, Jan. 30, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
A portion of the sales for this book will be used to promote 4-H educational programs.
For more information, Tammie may be reached online at www.DARNFAR.com; by e-mail, [email protected]; or by phone, 427-3333.