There’s another fantastic book out from Storey Publishing and it’s Farm Dogs by Janet Dohner.  Any book about farm dogs is probably going to be good but this book is divided into sections on Livestock Guardian Dogs, Herding Dogs, Terrier and earth Dogs, and Multipurpose Farm Dogs.  There are detailed explanations of every breed as far as physical standards, temperament, history of the breed, etc.,  and of course, you cannot help but fall in love with most of the dogs from the pictures!  Do not just naively adopt one of these dogs for their cuteness though – these dogs must have a job to do or they will make their own job (like tearing up your house).  Some of them can be pets also on their off time if they are worked for most of the day but others just are not made to be pets at all.  In addition, you cannot get a herding dog and expect him to also be a guardian and vice versa.  In the world of family pets, adopting from a shelter and getting a crossbreed is very much encouraged and those dogs make fantastic pets-in the working world you have to really do your research and know what kind of dog you are getting.  Again, I cannot say enough about the pictures-I’m partial to the Australian Cattle Dog on page 22 with a muddy face looking like he’s on top of the world he’s so happy and the Australian Kelpie on page 118 who is actually standing on top of his flock of sheep!  One of the things I like about this book is that it blatantly says things like “this breed has no interest in being in a house” or “this breed does not like children”.  If people actually read up on breeds before they adopted them it’s possible a lot of problems would be eliminated!  Highly recommended.

Stacy W.