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The 12 Best German Shepherd Training Books

German Shepherds are fantastic companion animals. They are famous for their trainability and loyalty to their owners. For this reason, police departments and military organizations employ them frequently.

However, German Shepherds do not arrive trained and prepared for action. It requires significant effort to bring them where they need to be.

Training is necessary for these dogs. In the absence of proper training, their territorial impulses can lead to aggression against other dogs and strangers.

Classes are essential to their success in training. However, reading a few books wouldn't hurt!

However, not all German Shepherd training manuals are created equal. Some are superior to others. BestForPets (bestforpets.org) will discuss some of the best German Shepherd training books below. Some of them are more theoretical, but others have practical applications.


The Art of Raising a Puppy

The Monks of New Skete, who have become some of the finest specialists in dog training and the animal-human link, authored The Art of Raising a Puppy. The majority of this book is devoted to training the German Shepherd, but it also contains a wealth of theoretical material.

This book will dramatically alter your perspective on dogs and puppy-rearing. The writers have managed to cram a great deal of information into one hardcover book. There is more to it than simply teaching your dog. You will also learn how to create the greatest possible relationship with your dog.

These include chapters on playing with your puppy, crate training, rearing dogs in the city, and the most recent advancements in canine health.

Not to be deceived by the name. This book is also useful if you want to adopt an older dog. It contains a chapter on just this!

If you must purchase just one book on dog training, we recommend this one. It is the greatest overall training manual for German Shepherds.


  • Practical advice and theoretical knowledge
  • Examines the adoption of adults and puppies
  • Includes specific information for urban inhabitants
  • Information on dog health and behavioral theories
  • Authored by specialists in dog training


  • Some readers find the number of concrete instances and anecdotes to be excessive.


Your German Shepherd Puppy Month by Month

We highly recommend reading Your German Shepherd Puppy Month by Month if you’re adopting a puppy. This book discusses how to nurture a puppy to become a well-adjusted and content adult dog. It covers all you need to know about puppy care.

It covers a variety of topics, including crate training and housebreaking. It also contains subjects that are not directly associated with training. For instance, immunization regimens and questions to ask a breeder before adopting a puppy are discussed in detail.

Socialization is well explored, which is essential for any book on German Shepherds. It describes how to teach fundamental instructions like sit, remain, and come. Training with a leash is explained.

Significant parts are devoted to training and feeding your German Shepherd. There includes a section on when to take your dog to the veterinarian, in addition to information on grooming issues such as washing regimens (and when not to worry about it).

This is the greatest German Shepherd training book for the money, covering practically everything you need to know about training your dog.


  • Includes discussions on crate training, leash training, and fundamental commands.
  • Describes things to do before adopting a puppy.
  • Includes exercise and dietary information
  • Grooming and veterinary themes are included.


  • May lack the exact details sought by some readers.


How to Be Your Dog’s Best Friend

Although How to Be Your Dog’s Best Friend is not exclusively about German Shepherds, it is an excellent resource for anyone who wishes to train German Shepherds.

The writers are some of the most prominent German Shepherd Dog trainers in the world (they are also the authors of our top selection), and a significant portion of their material is particular to the breed. However, their advice is worded so that it applies to all dog breeds.

This book will assist you in training your German Shepherd by improving your bond with your dog. This book is actually about how to become your dog’s best buddy. Numerous reviews deem this polished and novel method of dog training to be highly beneficial.

The knowledge in this book is applicable to both adults and pups. Those who have recently adopted a dog may find this book useful. You may also use this book if you wish to teach your present German Shepherd to a higher standard.

Some vital subjects are addressed in addition to the standard training material. They cover selecting an appropriate dog for your requirements and where to adopt a dog. There is coverage of pedigree information, which may be quite useful when adopting a puppy.


  • Complete training details
  • Facilitates the development of your bond with your dog.
  • Versatile for a broad variety of dogs
  • Many subjects covered


  • Possibly too theoretical for some readers.


Training Your German Shepherd Dog

The Instruction of Your German Shepherd Dog is one of a series of publications on training various types of dogs. It is rather simple, making it an excellent alternative for folks who have never taught a dog before.

It offers particular guidance on a wide range of dog training subjects, including housetraining, spoken instructions, and leash training. It also discusses breaking a dog’s negative habits as compassionately and effectively as feasible.

The majority of the information in this book is not german shepherd-specific. Despite this, many dog owners without a background in dog training may still find this article useful. This is an excellent introductory text that promotes positive leadership and consistent tactics.

Each command and training advice is accompanied by illustrations and detailed instructions. This may be a bit excessive for some owners, but it might be helpful for those who have never taught a dog before.


  • Offers basic information on the majority of training topics
  • Detailed instructions are provided.
  • Suitable for novices
  • Discusses how to break harmful behaviors


  • Fewer pages than usual books
  • Despite the title, contains little unique German Shepherd information.


German Shepherd Training

German Shepherd Training may be about German Shepherds especially, but we did not find it extremely effective in many situations. It includes fundamental information on selecting a puppy and addressing common behavioral issues. It may be adequate for novice dog owners, but expert and even amateur trainers will find most of the content to be too elementary.

Basic training commands, including housebreaking and leash training, are presented. Additionally, there is a chapter on socializing, which is crucial for all German Shepherds. While most of this material appears to be geared toward pups, it is easily applicable to older dogs as well.

These training suggestions and information do not specifically pertain to German Shepherds. Nevertheless, this breed is trained similarly to the majority of other breeds, thus this is to be anticipated. In actuality, there is nothing special you need to know to train a German Shepherd.

There is a discussion on dog body language as well as other related subjects. Again, the majority of this material is fundamental.


  • Contains fundamental information on commands
  • Straightforward details
  • Discourses on canine body language
  • Includes ideas on exercising


  • Very few German Shepherd-specific details
  • Basic subjects covered


Let Dogs Be Dogs

Let Dogs Be Dogs, authored by the Monks of New Skete, is a groundbreaking guide to establishing a healthy connection with your dog. This book may or may not be about training. It explores the relationship between a dog’s behavior and training. It discusses how to be a dependable and empathetic leader for your dog.

This book contains several tales and anecdotal material, as well as numerous case studies and scientific details. Read this book if you want to learn how to get along with your dog quickly.

Not directly related to training. However, it discusses how to correct specific issue behaviors, typically using scientific methods and a stronger bond with your dog. This is not a fundamental dog training book, therefore if you are searching for step-by-step crate training instructions, you should not purchase this book.

Highly recommended for experienced dog owners and those seeking something a little less practical. This is a good choice if you’re interested in learning the rationale behind various training strategies.


  • Contains scientific knowledge
  • Discusses dog behavior
  • Information about correcting problematic conduct


  • Lacking practicality
  • Too many tales for certain readers


Decoding Your Dog

Frequently, training your dog is more about training yourself than really instructing your pet. Many dogs do extremely well and very fast if they are set up for success; but, our training errors and misunderstanding of our dog’s body language frequently cause problems.

Decoding Your Dog aims to alleviate these issues by giving dog owners with a comprehensive understanding of their pet’s behavior. When you comprehend why your German Shepherd is misbehaving, it becomes much simpler to repair the issue.

This book does not concentrate on a single technique. It will not teach you how to train your German Shepherd, but rather why training is effective.

The author presents cutting-edge research and real-world examples in an approachable manner. It demonstrates what we know about canine behavior, enabling pet owners to apply it to their dogs.

However, this book is not as practical as other possibilities. A dog trainer with expertise will be able to quickly implement the recommendations in their training sessions. This book does not give any further hand-holding for beginners.


  • Supported by scientific evidence
  • Teaches how to decipher canine body language.
  • Numerous real-world scenarios


  • No practical guidelines
  • More abstract than some readers may want.


From Fearful to Fear Free

Numerous German Shepherds suffer from anxiety. They are notorious for their fear-based hostility toward strangers and other canines. When dogs are frightened, aggression is inevitable.

The book From Fearful to Fear Free was developed specifically for apprehensive dogs. It addresses barking hostility, and destructive behavior. This book seeks to tackle the fundamental problem rather than the symptoms. It helps the dog feel more secure and fearless in addressing the world, resulting in reduced hostility.

This book is both useful and academic. It includes realistic strategies for reducing your dog’s anxiety while also assisting you in determining its root cause. It addresses anxiety in general, as well as specific stressors.

Whether your German Shepherd appears worried all the time or only at the groomer, this book offers helpful suggestions. Numerous reviews were positive.

The next best thing to working with a canine behaviorist is this book.

This book may not, however, be useful for general dog training. It is incredibly specialized, focused just on worried German Shepherds.


  • Aims to alleviate worry – a frequent cause of German Shepherd aggressiveness
  • Useful advice and detailed directions
  • Examines general anxiety and specific anxiety-provoking situations.


  • Only covers anxiety and terror
  • Repetitive


Before and After Getting Your Puppy

Dr. Ian Dunbar discusses his positive and enjoyable dog training technique in Before and After Getting Your Puppy. He was one of the first dog trainers to understand that dogs learn most effectively when they are less anxious. In this book, he describes a curriculum centered on toys, rewards, and games.

This book does not provide special information regarding German Shepherds, but it does give an excellent training regimen for dog owners. It describes training your dog in basic etiquette, addressing behavioral issues, and working with his disposition.

This book is intended for use with a puppy, thus its usefulness with an adult dog may be diminished. It offers puppy development milestones and training advice for each stage. The strategy is organized yet employs several low-stress strategies.

Inhibition of biting, socializing, and other essential training procedures are described.


  • A clear and organized plan
  • Puppy milestones mentioned
  • Socialization and comparable phases are described.


  • For pups exclusively
  • Not German Shepherd particular


The Happy German Shepherd

How a dog is raised is crucial, particularly when it comes to German Shepherds. The focus of The Happy German Shepherd is on developing pups into well-adjusted adults.

It includes a comprehensive overview of training as well as instructions for general care. You will learn how to exercise and feed your growing puppy. It also debunks popular fallacies regarding puppyhood and provides novice pet owners with insights they may not discover elsewhere.

This article addresses socializing your puppy, desensitizing your dog to loud stimuli, and reducing behavioral issues.

However, the majority of this book’s content is fairly elementary. It presupposes that the reader has no knowledge of dogs or training. If that is your starting point, this book may be useful for you. Otherwise, you likely already know a substantial amount of the subject matter.

There is little detailed information regarding German Shepherds. It consists primarily of generalized information and recommendations applicable to all pups. Much of it is also accessible through a free Google search.

This book’s flaws placed it at the bottom of our ranking. It is hardly the worst book available. However, the value simply isn’t there.


  • General instruction overview
  • An extensive range of subjects covered
  • Excellent advice for novice dog owners


  • Short
  • Uncertain information
  • Beginner level

Buyer's Guide

There are several distinctions between a good and a fantastic German Shepherd training book. In addition to providing you with the information you need to teach your dog, a good book should also help you better understand your dog.

Because you don’t know what you’re receiving until you start reading, choosing a training book for your German Shepherd might appear to be rather difficult.

The following are some fundamental things to conduct when searching for the ideal book.

The Meaning of Science

There are several dog training methods developed by numerous different authors. Self-publishing has made it possible for anybody to produce a book about dog training.

Therefore, it is vital to do adequate research.

You should prefer a book that is supported by science. In the book’s description, look for mentions of clinical research and scientific material. You are not interested in the opinion of any random individual on dog training. You want knowledge and methods that have been demonstrated to be effective.

Obviously, there are also some well-known authors. However, celebrity dog trainers seldom publish scientifically-based publications. People will buy their books regardless of whether they employ good marketing strategies.

You should seek elsewhere if a book’s only claim to fame is the author’s name.

Adult vs. Puppies

Never is too late to train your dog. However, some novels are written specifically for dogs. Frequently, the routines in these books correspond to a puppy’s growth and developmental stages. In addition, they may include subjects that do not pertain to adult dogs, such as immunization regimens.

You may find these books especially useful if you’re adopting a puppy. If you’ve never reared a puppy before, we suggest reading one of the following books.

Nevertheless, if you’re adopting an adult dog, you’ll need a book that can be used with dogs of all ages. While you may adapt what a book on puppies teaches to an older dog, it will contain a lot of unnecessary material.

Instead, we recommend purchasing a book that does not contain information particular to puppies.

Theoretical versus Real-World

There are books that explain why training is effective, as well as publications with detailed instructions on how training is effective. In dog training, both are essential and have a role.

Because every dog is unique, step-by-step instructions do not work with every dog. Additionally, these practical ideas seldom aid in developing a stronger bond with your dog. Every relationship is distinct and requires ongoing maintenance.

However, a positive bond with your dog is vital for successful training. Without a healthy connection, step-by-step directions are useless.

Without theoretical knowledge, it is difficult to adapt step-by-step instructions to your dog.

If you’ve never taught a dog before, we suggest beginning with a practical book that covers the majority of training themes. After that, read a few theoretical books. Theoretical books are useful for advanced training, but they are also useful for building a strong foundation and relationship.

For individuals with prior dog training expertise, we suggest theoretical literature. If you do not require illustrated step-by-step directions on how to train your dog to sit, you will likely find one of these theoretical books useful.

Compared to Standard Training

Most German Shepherd training books include fundamental dog training techniques. There is information on crate training, socializing, and other related dog training subjects. This information is applicable to all dogs. Every dog will need to be able to walk on a leash, for example.

If you have a new puppy or an adult dog, one of these books will certainly be of interest to you. They will assist you to get off to a good start. Many also possess fundamental knowledge on addressing typical behavioral issues, particularly in pups.

However, specialty training materials can be useful in some circumstances. These do not address fundamental instructions and concepts, such as crate training.

Instead, they discuss addressing specific issues or assisting your dog in achieving specific goals. If you own a worried German Shepherd, there are publications available to assist you in managing their anxiety. (One was mentioned in our reviews!)

Those with a new dog are unlikely to find specialist training books beneficial. These books are intended for dogs with evident underlying issues.

To Plan or Not to Plan?

Some training manuals have detailed plans. Many of these strategies for individuals who specialize in pups are dependent on their age. It may suggest beginning socializing at four months, for example. Detailed steps may be specified.

These programs are intended to be followed sequentially. You begin with the initial step, master it, and then go to the next.

For novice dog owners and those with pups, these products are frequently effective. You should not worry about forgetting something crucial. It will advise you just when to go to the next level, so you won’t have to worry about pushing your dog too quickly.

However, this type of planned approach is not suitable for many individuals. Adopting an adult will likely result in a combination of excellent and poor manners. They may not need to be taught basic instructions, but they may suffer from separation anxiety.

These strategies are of little assistance under these conditions. In these situations, we propose obtaining a book without these specific plans. You can modify the plans to accommodate your dog, but sometimes it’s simpler to abandon the idea entirely!


The German Shepherd is extraordinarily trainable. Their commitment to their master is unending, and their intelligence enables them to learn new orders fast.

However, utilizing the appropriate training method is crucial to their success. If you wrongly train your German Shepherd, he may become worried and aggressive. Their protective instincts might lead them astray!

The Art of Raising a Puppy is recommended to anybody adopting a German Shepherd. Despite the title, this book has chapters devoted to adopting German Shepherds from shelters. This book includes all you need to know about dog training, including how to establish a strong bond from the start.

Your German Shepherd Puppy Month by Month is another another excellent book, however, this one is geared at pups. It is ideal for novice dog owners who do not want to miss anything.

BestForPets (bestforpets.org)’s reviews should have helped you select the best German Shepherd training books. When feasible, we advise reading broadly. You can never have too much information regarding teaching your German Shepherd.

Author Image

Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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