inside of a dogInside of a Dog by Alexandra Horowitz (2009 nonfiction)

If you love a dog or have loved a dog or just want to understand dogs better, this book will be an informative and entertaining read. Subtitled “What Dogs See, Smell and Know”, the author (a cognitive scientist) mixes observations of dog behavior – frequently those of her own dog – with the likely scientific reason behind it. The tone of the book is frequently humorous. (How can it not be; it’s about dog behavior!) But the science is serious, describing the studies that produced the cited results. The author clearly loves dogs and the personality of her dog Pumpernickel permeates the book. The derivation of the title (from Groucho Marx) and the cover photos add to the pleasure of reading this book.

Reviewed by Stephanie Dorward