Dr. Ian Dunbar

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Dr. Ian Dunbar is a veterinarian, animal behaviorist, and writer. He received his veterinary degree and a Special Honors degree in Physiology & Biochemistry from the Royal Veterinary College (London University) and a doctorate in animal behavior from the Psychology Department at the University of California in Berkeley, where he spent ten years researching olfactory communication, the development of hierarchical social behavior, and aggression in domestic dogs.

Dr. Dunbar is a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, the International Society for Applied Ethology, the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior, the California Veterinary Medical Association, the Sierra Veterinary Medical Association, and the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (which he founded).

Dr. Dunbar joined the Society for Veterinary Ethology (now the International Society for Applied Ethology) over 35 years ago, at which time he was the only member specializing in dog and cat behavior problems. Later he was involved in the establishment of the American SVE (now the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior).

He has written numerous books, including How To Teach A New Dog Old Tricks, the Good Little Dog Book and a series of Behavior Booklets—separate educational booklets on each of the most common pet behavior problems. Additionally, he has hosted eleven videotapes on puppy/dog behavior and training, including SIRIUS® Puppy Training, Training Dogs With Dunbar and Every Picture Tells A Story. All of his videos have won a variety of awards. The famous SIRIUS Puppy Training video (the first dog training video ever produced) remains the all-time best selling dog video. For three years running the SIRIUS® video has always been voted the #1 BEST DOG TRAINING VIDEO by the Association of Pet Dog trainers-the largest and most influential association of dog trainers in the world. His books and DVDs can be found at: James and Kenneth

Before SIRIUS® Puppy Training Classes there were simply no puppy classes-Dr. Dunbar developed them in 1981.

Certainly, the SIRIUS® Puppy Training video had a dramatic influence on the pet dog fancy, completely changing the way dogs are trained in a number of countries around the world. Dr. Dunbar’s unique lure/reward, off-leash training techniques provided a delightful alternative to inane and inhumane leash jerking. In a sense, SIRIUS took the jerks out of training. SIRIUS techniques have been adopted and adapted by most thinking and caring dog trainers worldwide. For more information go to: Sirius Puppy Training

Dr. Dunbar was invited to develop and write (for over seven years) the American Kennel Club's Gazette "Behavior" column, which was voted Best Dog Column for a number of years in succession by the Dog Writers' Association of America.

In 1993, Dr. Dunbar founded the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) APDT in the United States and organized the first two Annual Conferences. Dr. Dunbar's current project is the creation of the K9 GAMES®-an exciting spectator event featuring fast-moving, motivating, competitive games for dogs and owners.

He has been lecturing to veterinarians and dog clubs for over thirty years. In fact, since 1986 he has conducted over 800 days of seminar and workshop for trainers and veterinarians around the world. There are very few educated trainers who have not been strongly influenced by Dr. Dunbar's fun & games, from-the-animal's-point-of-view, dog friendly dog training.

Dr. Dunbar is peerless in his field; there is simply no other person who has his qualifications, experience, and expertise in the realm of modern psychological dog training and behavior counseling-fields which Dr. Dunbar has played a major role in developing over the past 25 years. 

Dr. Dunbar's books, CDs and DVDs are available from the DogStarDaily online digital store.
Also, many of Dr. Dunbar's multi-day seminars for dog trainers and
veterinarians are available on DVD from Tawzer Dog Videos, and
his "Give Them A Scalpet and They Will Dissect A Kiss: Dog Training
Past, Present and Future
" lecture is available from Dogwise.


Dr. Dunbar's Upcoming Seminars & Appearances

Products from Dr. Ian Dunbar

  • All 4 books and 14 videos by Dr. Ian Dunbar at a discount of over 40%.

  • Children have natural advantages as trainers. Dogs like being with them, because they are playful and fun. All they have to do is learn a few simple training techniques and they’ll soon put grown ups in the shade.

  • Learn how to train dogs the SIRIUS® way! Learn how to run and promote your own dog-friendly dog training business.

  • Learn how to run a puppy class the SIRIUS way, using the off-leash, lure/reward, dog-friendly training methods that have made the SIRIUS philosophy the hallmark of pet dog training.

  • When you get a new puppy, you need to meet six developmental deadlines before your puppy is just five months old. Know what they are BEFORE you get your puppy!

  • In this DVD lecture, veterinarian and animal behaviorist Dr. Ian Dunbar addresses one of the most worrying behavior problems any dog owner can face — dogs that fight.

Blog posts by Dr. Ian Dunbar

Dr. Ian Dunbar and Dune the American Bulldog

BARKING UP THE WRONG TREE — FOR 110 YEARS?

Edward Lee Thorndike showed that behavior is modified by its consequences and in 1905, he published his Law of Effect, basically stating: Any behavior followed by pleasant consequences will increase in frequency and be more likely to occur in the future, whereas any behavior followed by unpleasant consequences will decrease in frequency and be less likely to occur in the future. The notion of binary feedback is the quintessence of learning theory. The Law of Effect was a wonderful start but as theory was put to practice in education and training, something went very wrong along the way. Over...

Dr. Ian Dunbar and Hugo Pup Post Potty Break Cuddle

Why Purchase a Puppy that is NOT Housetrained?

I’ve raised a few puppies in my time and it has always puzzled me why anyone would want to purchase a puppy that hasn’t already been housetrained, especially since house soiling and other behavior problems, such as excessive barking and destructive chewing, are a major source of frustration for new owners. Most kennel-bred puppies are allowed to eliminate anywhere and everywhere, chew anything and everything, bark at will and run around uncontrolled, which of course, is exactly what they’ll do in their new homes. Consequently, far too many eight-week-old puppies already have behavior...

Cradling a puppy at the vet

Why Don’t We Adequately Socialize Young Puppies With People?

Dogs may be taught manners and basic obedience at anytime in their lives. However, training puppies is just so much fun and so, why wait? Similarly, behavior problems may be resolved at any time in a dog’s life but of course, they are annoying and frustrating for owners and so, why not teach good habits from the outset? Temperament problems, however, must be prevented during early puppyhood because rehabilitating adult dogs is complicated and extremely time-consuming. For example, whereas It takes just a few days, or a week at the most, to resolve incipient signs of shyness, fearfulness,...

Housebreaking A Puppy

Housebreaking Tips: Does rubbing a dog's nose in it's mess teach a dog where to eliminate?

I received a question today from one of my Udemy SIRIUS® Academy students: “What do you say when a client tells you, in regards to puppy housebreaking, "Well I rubbed my dog's nose in his poop and he knew he was wrong and he never pooped in the house again."

Well, let's start with what we know. We know the client rubbed the dog's nose in the poop and if we believe the client, (which, by the way, I don't), the dog never had a housebreaking accident again. However, we don’t know that the dog "knew he was wrong". (We don't even know what our spouse, another human being, is thinking and so,...

The Universe Verse on Kickstarter.com

Jamie's amazing Universe Verse Book - Get it now for free!

I love science, especially the behavioral sciences. That’s why I couldn’t be happier to announce that my baby boy, Jamie, has finished his epic ode to science, a project he’s been working on for over 7 years! 

Of course Jamie is the James in James & Kenneth and along with Kelly and I, he is an integral part in keeping Dog Star Daily, James & Kenneth Publishers & SIRIUS Puppy Training all running smoothly.  On top of his many roles and responsibilities working with us in the doggy world he’s found time to moonlight as a educational comic book author and illustrator.

The project he...

10 Tips For Current and Future Puppy Owners That Want to Train the Perfect Dog

For a limited time you can use the promo code "10tips" to save 50% on Dr. Ian Dunbar's comprehensive Online Course How To Train a Puppy


General Dog Training Tips

1. Choose Wisely When Selecting Your Future Pup

Whether selecting your prospective pup from a professional breeder or from a family breeding a litter for the very first time, the criteria are the same. Look for puppies raised indoors around human companionship and influence—specifically around people who have devoted lots of time to the puppies' education.

2. Future Problems Result from Early, Non-Corrected Problems

Embedded thumbnail for A workshop with Ian Dunbar: Solving "impossible" off-leash, real-life behavior problems, real-time.

A workshop with Ian Dunbar: Solving "impossible" off-leash, real-life behavior problems, real-time.

In this vlog post Ian Dunbar describes one of his latest workhops and what he most enjoys about teaching people and dogs in this format. He loves bringing "impossible" problem behaviors into the workhop and resolving them in real time. He teaches handlers how to quanitfy progress, test reliability, and improve performace vastly. This put the responsibility of reliability and performance on the handler and on training, rather than on the dog. Far too many dogs are being punished in the name of training or due to disobedience, when the fault actually lies within the teaching process. 

 

Pet Food and Canine Nutrition: Best Brands

I just read the Independent Pet Food Nutrition Research Study by John Martinez based on a modification to Goldstein’s Wellness & Longevity Program — Natural Care for Dogs & Cats.

245 pet foods were scored according to quality of protein, fats and carbohydrate (whole grain and grain-free), absence of additives & preservatives, with a premium based on uncooked foods and vitamins, presence of phytonutrients, antioxidants, probiotics, prebiotics and lecithin and absence of non-beneficial nutrients to help reduce gas and form stool. (Obviously, with a good diet, dogs have good-looking...

Puppy Classes And Canine Parvovirus

I have just read a paper in the March/April issue of the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association describing a study that concluded, puppies vaccinated at least once prior to starting puppy classes at less than 16 weeks of age were at no more risk of being diagnosed with Canine Parvovirus infection than vaccinated puppies that did not attend classes.

The study comprised two parts:

1. A total of 21 veterinary clinics were selected from both low- and high-income zones in four cities with different seasonal patterns (Atlanta GA, Chicago IL, Phoenix AZ and Seattle WA). Data were...

Jack Russell Terriers Sitting

He Won't Sit Still for a Second: Quantifying Success in Dog Training

Years ago after a puppy class, a frustrated owner (of a Jack Russell Terrier) complained that her puppy wouldn’t sit still for a second. I got out my stopwatch and checked. She was quite correct; the puppy only sat for 0.2 of a second. I wrote the number on a sheet of paper and stuck it on the wall. On the fourth trial though, the JRT proved her wrong and sat for 1.2 seconds. I wrote the dog’s new personal best on the sheet of paper. Baby steps? Yes. But because we objectively quantified the dog’s performance, we realized that these baby steps reflected a 600% improvement. I explained to...

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