Posted in Book review, Dogs, Reading Challenge

Book review: Lucky Dog Lessons by Brandon McMillan

Something completely different from the previous books!

We unfortunately do not have pets yet, but have been wanting to get a dog for some time now. So reading about dogs is an interest and I’ve been reading dog training books every now and then. Why not prepare thoroughly when there is time and possibility to do this?

Training is not dominating.

Image credit of Lucky Dog Lessons: Goodreads

I’ve been watching Lucky Dog TV show whenever I’ve noticed it was on and I really liked Brandon McMillan’s style of handling animal training. I then discovered that he’d written a very practical book called Lucky Dog Lessons and I figured it was time to recap on some dog training 101.

This book is full of simple instructions to 7 basic commands of dog training (SIT, DOWN, STAY, NO, OFF, COME and HEEL) as well as tips for some more advanced training. I could well see myself trying many of these techniques and have earmarked some tips already for future use.

Unlike some dog training books I’ve read, this did not promote the dominating/pack leader attitude and I liked that it didn’t. I much prefer this book’s message of keeping it simple, kind and also firm in a teacher-student kind of a way. Like Brandon said, it’s much more effective to train an animal if they do what you ask willingly and not by forcing. And he has trained big animals so I believe when he says that (no way you could dominate a tiger and he has experience in tiger training). Bonding with your dog and building trust are the foundations of successful training and Brandon emphasizes this with many great stories of the different dogs he has rescued, trained and rehomed. It doesn’t always go as planned, but if you keep at it and don’t give up, you will get results and learn more about yourself and your pet. Repeating and giving positive reinforcement is key!

I’m hoping that Brandon will some day write more abut his youth when he was still learning the trade. Apparently his parents were very much in the big animal training business and he grew up among those big animals like tigers, bears and elephants. It would be super interesting to hear about those unusual early years!

This book also finds a place in my Reading Challenge (of course!) and I will put this down to this very suitable prompt:

39. A book about the relationship between humans and animals

What Reading Challenge? Check out my earlier post about it here.

We are lucky to have moved to our current house last year, where we have a small yard and also really nice outdoor surroundings for dog walks. So getting a dog seems like it could be in the very near future, just need to take care of this foot injury first!


I love books, games and the coziness of our house (currently it's the kingdom of me and my husband). My work in a game studio as a Senior HR Specialist keeps me busy and social, but I am an introvert in my core. Navigating life between my very social work and my introvert, less social personality can be tricky and it goes hand in hand with my interest in overall personal well-being.

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