Do As I Do


SUMMARY: Step-by-step guide to the Do As I Do training methods to teach your dog new behaviour by demonstrating them yourself.

AUDIENCE: It is accessible to the layman, but it will help if you’re familiar with training jargon and are not averse to a spot of cognitive psychology theory.


02 ProfessionalREVIEW: 

I have been following Dogwise with trepidation this year as they published gem after gem in the science popularization category. Do-As-I-Do is one of those books. I was really excited when the postman FINALLY brought it to our door.

Author: Claudia Fugazza has enviable credentials: she works alongside Adam Miklosi’s in his dog cognition lab at the University of Budapest. Her research and promotional work have made her the flag-bearer of the Do-As-I-Do training phenomenon.

Style and contents: 

Do-As-I-Do is a dog training technique that gives you a powerful shortcut. When your dog masters it, you can just do something and ask your dog to imitate you. This works way faster than ‘individual training’ where we painstakingly help the dog into position after saying the command word again and again. The technique could become essential for any complex training needs, like for assistance dogs.

On the style front, the writing was a little dry, but the book does what it says on the tin. It was marketed as a technical guide and not a beach read. Plus it is just 71-pages ‘long’, so you’ll barely need to invest any time before you can take it on the road.

It was jam-packed with well-researched contents on the theoretical background behind Do-As-I-Do (DAID for us nerds). It lay the theoretical scene of an infamously complicated concept (imitation) with simplicity and accuracy, which is a tall order.

It then provides the readers with a clear and concise step-by-step manual and a DVD to boot.

All major statements are also backed up with a citation. This transparency means you don’t have  to take the author’s word for anything. You’re invited to check the literature yourself if you feel so inclined. A massive plus point for me.

Claudia Fugazza has condensed all her academic knowledge and training experience into a tiny 71-page gem. It is so well summarized that you can end up, in a couple of hours:

  1. Knowing how to get your dog through the DAID protocol;
  2. Understanding the subtleties of social learning. This is no mean feat as the topic is infamously complex.

Possible improvements: The book could have paid a little more attention to the style. A touch more humour and analogies would have gone a long way. As it stands, it will probably alienate the casual reader. But hey, it’s just 71 pages so it’s well worth it if you ask me.

The verdict: I loved it and it has consolidated my hitherto casual knowledge of DAID in a way that I didn’t think possible for such a short volume. A must-have for anyone considering teaching DAID professionally.

More book reviews

Like the main page: If you like what I do, please let me know by clicking ‘like’ on the main page (not on this individual review). Each ‘like’ feels great and makes me want read and review more.

Author: Fugazza Claudia
Genre: owner manual, professional manual
Browse the Book Review archive. Genres: , . Author: . Reading Level: , . Star: . Bookmark the permalink. Comments are closed, but you can leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

One Trackback

  • […] as I do’. I will not be discussing exactly how you can teach this method. For that I refer you to her book and this article. In the following video, you can see ‘Do as I do’ in action. Instead, I will […]