Being A Dog – Following The Dog Into A World of Smell

Being A Dog

Following The Dog Into A World of Smell

By Alexandra Horowitz

To a dog, smell equals discovery.

What do we really know about our dog’s nose and their sense of smell? Have you ever really looked at your dog’s nose and wondered how it works?  What is it your dog finds so intriguing that they insist on stopping and sniffing every tree, hydrant, pole and random spots on the grass while on a walk? Why when we pull on that leash to get them to move on their response is to plant those paws in defiance, not wanting to leave that scent that intrigues them so?

Being A Dog Following The Dog Into A World of Smell By: Alexandra Horowitz

To smell is to discover

There are times our dog’s nose can embarrass us as they push their snouts into those awkward personal places that belong to your friends and acquaintances. And I’m sure we’ve all been on the receiving end of a dog sneeze that sends a spew of wet and yuck into your face.

Until reading Alexandra Horowitz’s book, “Being A Dog, Following The Dog Into A World Of Smell”, I’d never given much thought about my dog’s nose or her sense of smell.

Being A Dog - Following The Dog Into A World of Smell By: Alexandra Horowitz

Following The Dog Into A World of Smell

Alexandra Horowitz goes to great lengths as she gets down to the root of the smell, literally putting her nose down to the ground trying to sniff out what it is our dog’s smell at the base of that tree. Alexandra Horowitz covers in detail the differences between the average household pet and the working and service dogs.

I guarantee you that after reading Alexandra Horowitz’s book, “Being A Dog, Following The Dog Into A World Of Smell, you will look at your dog’s nose in a different light. You will find yourself paying more attention and wondering what your dog is smelling as they point that twitching nose up in the air. And the next time you’re out for a walk you will be sure to think twice before pulling your dog away from the base of that tree, now understanding that your dog is reading more than just the local pee-mail but in fact they are reading a story.

Note: Book available for purchase October 2016

I have not been financially compensated for this post. All opinions are my own and do not reflect the author or publisher of this book. I was given an advance copy of Alexandra Horowitzh’s book, Being A Dog, Following The Dog Into A World Of Smell, by the publisher, and after reading it I choose to post a review and share my opinion of it with my readers.
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Author: Kelly Harding & Edie The Pug

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23 Comments

  1. Sounds like an interesting book. I did a lot of research on dogs and their sense of smell for the Talent Hounds documentary as a unique amazing talent and absolutely fascinating.

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  2. It’s on my to read list! I do some nosework games with Mr. N and he’s always tracking the scent of various creatures when we go for walks.

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  3. This sounds like such an interesting book. I’m amazed at how scent driven most dogs are. I laughed when you mentioned dogs sticking their noses in those “awkward” places – we can really relate to that! My Husky is so bad, she’s always sticking her long snout in peoples’ crotches – we call it “crotch hunting” BOL!! SO embarrassing.
    Love & Biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

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    • Thank goodness Edie is low enough to the ground that she can’t reach those embarrassing places 😉 But she’s at the right height to sniff the cat’s bottoms!

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  4. We know smell is very important to dogs and how they explore their environment. Sounds like a great book.

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    • I wonder if it applies to cats? I’m going to have to look into this!

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  5. Oops, I thought I commented on this yesterday! I really love the idea that sniffing a tree is like reading a story for dogs. I will never rush Ruby again. LOL

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    • After reading the book, I have a hard time moving Edie on during our walks. I’m always watching her nose and it’s movements as she sniffs. I feel bad rushing her on a walk.

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  6. I have written this book down in my schedule to get for Hanukkah as i want to know more – thanks for this post

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  7. When I volunteered at Best Friends, I was in a dog run with a very nice Pit bull named Stitch. He followed me closely and starting sniffing the legs of my jeans. He literally pressed his nose against me and I just stood still. I realized that I had been playing with puppies all morning and had more recently been with other dogs in the building. It was really different to be the object of intense sniffing. After he got all the information he needed, he walked away.

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    • When my husband comes home at the end of the day, Edie sniffs the bottoms of his pants and boots – it could be because she can’t reach any higher 😉 But I’m sure she is checking out where he has been all day and who he has been with.

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  8. Dog noses are INCREDIBLE! Well, maybe all dogs’ noses besides Henry’s. His is a little lackluster — I’ll drop a treat on the ground and it can take him several seconds to find it 🙂 However, my sister’s puggle can find anything edible from far, far away!

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    • Interesting that you say Henry takes several second to find a dropped treat. There have been times I’ve put things on the ground and Edie will pass right by it. Following The Dog Into A World of Smell, actually mentions this. It’s not that they are missing the treat – they know it’s there! They just may be on the scent of something else thats around it.
      And as far as a pug or puggle goes, if there is food, they will find it! Lol

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  9. Haha, this might sound weird, but I sometimes wonder what I smell like to my dogs :D! I know James sneezes when I use hairspray, so he obviously doesn’t like that! I also once followed an introduction course on how to teach your dog to search for items. Crazy, Amy and James were very skilled!!

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    • I don’t think it sounds weird at all! I wonder if our dogs find some of our scents offensive?

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  10. This book sounds like an interesting read. I’m definitely going to make a purchase when it comes out later in the year as I feel quite curious now after reading your post.

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    • This book will make you think and understand more about how you dog uses their nose.

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  11. Thanks for the great review. That truly does sound like a great book. Dexter is all about his nose. I think he has one like a working dog! Oh, maybe it was all his scent work classes. 😉

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  12. Dog noses are impressive to say the least. Since we are scent hounds who do nose work and tracking, we constantly impress our mom with our talented noses. Last weekend, Bailie had a classroom to search, some 30 desks, shelves, books, the whole classroom full of stuff. Bailie needed to find a small straw with 2 or 3 QTips with odor that were in the hidden straw somewhere in the room. For a human, the task seems daunting. Mom held Bailie at the threshold. When she noticed Bailie’s nose engage, she released her. She darted through the desks to the far corner of the room where she correctly located the hide. Now imagine that sense of smell in every day life. It is absolutely amazing what a dog nose can do!

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    • How fantastic that you are doing this with Bailie, and well done that she was able to locate the hide! I always knew that dogs had a keen sense of smell, but until reading The Dog Into A World of Smell, I had no idea the extent of it. I’m sure you would find this book a great read.

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