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Publisher's Summary

Man is not ape. Dog is not wolf. From startling facts about its origins, to the fundamental reasons behind dog and man’s unbreakable attachment, Clever Dog: The Secrets Your Dog Wants You to Know explores the myths that so many pet owners have been led to believe – and forms conclusions as to how our future relationship with the dog needs to change in order to survive, and thrive.

With her unique understanding of the secret language of dogs and her belief that all dogs are ‘clever dogs’, Sarah uses amusing anecdote and useful case histories to discover the mysteries of dog behaviour and show us a way of communicating with the four-legged friend who shares our hearts and homes.

Dog lovers can look at their best friends in a new light and create the perfect bond. As a world-leading expert in canine psychology, and often acknowledged as the ‘trainer’s trainer’, Sarah Whitehead shares her unique understanding of dogs in Clever Dog.

With sections on Life, Love, Health and Happiness, this is a book about how we can become a harmonious team with our best friend. Here at last are the secrets your dog wants you to know. With fascinating case studies and expert practical advice, Clever Dog is much more than a guidebook – it is the book your dog would want you to buy.

©2012 Sarah Whitehead (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

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What members say

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-03-13

I'd rather ask my dog!!!

I am sure that Ms Whitehead knows a lot about dogs but I felt that her self satisfaction and her contempt for the rest of the human race did not make me want to learn anything from her!

7 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Dee
  • 03-17-15

Brilliant insight for dog owners

Sarah Whitehead had been recommended by our puppy training tutor and she did not disappoint.
Most memorable chapter was when she identified a food allergy was the cause of the problem not a jealous pet.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • AD
  • 07-13-17

What a good book.

Quite different to training books I've seen, but makes much more sense why dogs do what they do and how to make your dog a happy dog.

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  • Ruth G
  • 07-12-17

Enjoyed this

Sound advice and facts tha every dog owner and trainer needs to know. Well narrated .

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  • M. S.
  • 06-25-17

Too much personal opinion, not enough problems for the average

The book is all about the extreme cases the author has dealt with. It is filled with clients on the verge of tears of gratitude. It is also filled with canines that do things the author has never seen, let alone the reader. Don't listen to this thinking you will get advice for your unruly canine. While the author does add lists with advice for the rest of us, it's done in an unexplained rapid fire fashion. I was particularly rubbed the wrong way by her inclusion of personal opinions with zero scientific basis or even justification. Personal opinions that can be downright dangerous to small dogs and dogs not living in a tempered climate I may add. Talking of scientific basis: there is none. Studies are from sixty years ago and conclusions and generalisations drawn from them are painful. Overall, if you are searching for entertainment this might be for you. If you are searching for education, try elsewhere.

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  • Nike
  • 08-31-16


Very useful advice.Thanks. I found the what not to do very supportive Dogs have a lot to teach Us!

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  • jillian grant
  • 08-30-16

An enlightening way to learn how dogs tick.

Would you listen to Clever Dog again? Why?

I doubt it as I'm not a dog lover but maybe if I was with a friend who wanted to listen to it, then I would.

What other book might you compare Clever Dog to, and why?


Have you listened to any of Jane Arnfield’s other performances? How does this one compare?


Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I became quite angry early on in the book when, in the first case study, the dog was misunderstood and mistreated by trainers who didn't have the same skills or aptitude as sarah.

Any additional comments?

Even though I'm not a dog lover, I was still interested in this book. I really liked the way concepts were presented with real case studies and could reason why sarah came up with her various strategies in trying to help both dog and owner. I thought Jane arnfield read this extremely well indeed.

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  • nadia marzocco
  • 04-26-16

fabulous. inspiring.

well researched, written and read. full of case study examples dog owners can relate to supported by theory. a read for (potential) dog friends. a must.

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  • 05-09-15

unfounded nervous anticipation

I needed information to help with our 2 new labrador boys. wasn't sure if it was more preaching but I was very pleasantly surprised. informative and entertaining