Dog Bless You!

Non-Fiction - Inspirational
138 Pages
Reviewed on 05/12/2022
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Author Biography

Dan Josselyn-Creighton is also the author of Taco 'bout Training Tuesdays! and has always had a passion for dogs, tacos, and talking about himself in the third person. Dan became a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner (KPA-CTP) in 2014 after spending several years as a dog groomer and doggie daycare attendant. Dan was also eager to help other groomers and dog owners teach their dogs to like being groomed instead of fearing it, so he also became Low Stress Certified through Dr. Sophia Yin's Cattle Dog Press, and more recently has been certified as a Fear Free trainer, groomer, and speaker. Dan's biggest heroes in the world of dog training are the doctors and scientists who have helped popularize modern, science-based dog training methods, like Dr Sophia Yin, Ian Dunbar, Patricia McConnell, Karen Overall, Marty Becker, and trainers specializing in behavior modification like Michael Shikashio and Grisha Stewart. His
biggest hero, after his parents, is probably Mr. Rogers, because he thinks every person and every dog is special, just the way they are.

Today Dan is the owner of Golden Rule Dog Training and teaches puppy socialization at Zendog on Church Street, virtual group classes and webinars with EduCanine, and especially loves giving private lessons to dog lovers in and around his neighborhood, Toronto's Church-Wellesley Village. He also volunteers some of his time with two dog rescue organizations, Coveted Canines Rescue (CCR) and Boston Terrier Rescue Canada (BTRC).

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jon Michael Miller for Readers' Favorite

Vir-Chew! Dog Bless You! What Modern Dog Training Taught Me about Living a Good Life by Dan Josselyn-Creighton will not teach you how to train your dog, but it might guide you toward learning how. More important, this lovely book will surely inspire you to become a better person even if you are already great! Becoming a certified dog trainer for his three dogs—Kayla, Buffy, and Spike—led Mr. Josselyn-Creighton to significantly improve his own sense of self-worth and provides a pathway for his readers as well. He expertly weaves the concepts of scientific dog training with spiritual concepts, psychology, philosophy, and science into a holistic path toward “living a good life.” The path forward, as he has learned, involves math, science, and the seven virtues, all centered around the Golden Rule.

What I enjoyed most about this book is the author’s voice—his kindness, sincerity, compassion, and honesty. He starts from the simple truth that none of us is perfect, we all make mistakes, but through effort and most of all Love, we can all grow, and yes, by using some of the techniques he learned by becoming a dog trainer. The most important lesson he learned in the training process is that dogs learn by patience and reward, not by punishment and dominance. His basic premise is that every sentient being deserves and responds to Love, not only dogs but humans too. And he documents this simple theory through his research into religion and philosophy. His writing is not thick with scholarship but is filled with humor, compassion, and Love (a word he always capitalizes). Vir-Chew! Dog Bless You! by Dan Josselyn- Creighton is a joy to read from beginning to end.

Pikasho Deka

Vir-Chew by Daniel Josselyn is an inspirational self-help guidebook to help readers lead a virtuous and fulfilling life by learning how to treat dogs. Drawing upon his years of experience as a dog trainer, Daniel advises readers to be loving and respectful and regard dogs as sentient creatures to whom we have moral obligations. The author believes that it's not humanly possible to follow the Golden Rule and treat everyone the way we would like ourselves to be treated without spending a lot of time cultivating the habits that form good behavior. In his opinion, trust is a better thing to cultivate than faith. After spending years volunteering at dog rescue centers, Daniel learns that punishment-based training is almost always useless and, in the long term, does more harm than good. He also encourages readers to always keep striving for perfection.

A treat for dog lovers that provides helpful lessons on dog training as well as some valuable advice for life in general, Vir-Chew is a unique motivational book you shouldn't miss out on. Author Daniel Josselyn uses personal anecdotes recounting his time with several dogs at various points to demonstrate some fundamental truths about life that are quite often overlooked. The narrative delves into religion, philosophy, and practical experiences to reiterate the themes of love, compassion, understanding, and the moral obligations that humans have toward their animal companions. As someone who grew up with pets all my life, I feel very grateful to have read Vir-Chew: Dog Bless You! Recommended to animal lovers.

Jennie More

Vir-Chew: Dog Bless You by Dan Josselyn-Creighton is about how working with dogs helped the author overcome depression after first losing his dog Kayla when she was 19 years old and later his mother, whom he loved dearly. Seeking purpose after experiencing these deaths led him to become a dog groomer, but he felt that he was failing at it. To help himself succeed, he learned about dog behavior which led him to become a dog trainer. He found his passion and, as a result, saved the lives of many dogs by helping their owners understand them better and thus respond appropriately to their dogs’ behavior. This book delves into subjects of philosophy, love, faith, and virtue and finds inspirational and imaginative ways to communicate those to our furry friends. Throughout the book, he uses numerous analogies to show how people can live a genuinely virtuous life by treating others with dignity and respect.

Vir-Chew by Dan Josselyn-Creighton is a delightful depiction of the beautiful virtues we display when loving and caring for our dogs and how we should show that same love both for others and ourselves. As an animal lover, I could identify with the many examples of how animals show love and affection because I see how my dogs love me. After reading this book, I have developed a deeper appreciation of my Labrador and Beagle. The most powerful message I took from the book is the responsibility that comes with great power. The author refers to the power imbalance between humans and dogs, and how easy it is for humans to abuse that authority. Our virtue lies in choosing to love rather than dominating those less powerful than us, which includes other humans.