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We've chosen some of the best pet books to list here. Different books have different perspectives, and that's always valuable. Except for the technical veterinary references, all of these books would make excellent gifts. The books have been personally recommended by pet lovers or are rated very well by reviewers on  The stars stars5.gif (240 bytes) indicate the average rating books received by readers on Amazon.

  • The Veterinary Clinics of North America Small Animal Practice: Diabetes Mellitus. Guest Editors: Deborah S. Greco & Mark E. Peterson. May 1995. Volume 25; #3. Saunders. ISSN 0195-5616. This book is no longer available from the publisher but you may be able to get it from larger libraries (or an inter-library loan).  Brenda's comment: My favorite, most useful veterinary book and it is devoted entirely to diabetes. It is small but packed full of information. I recommend it to all, and it is quite affordable. The last price listed was $31.00

General books for cats and dogs

tilley.gif (12534 bytes) The 5 Minute Veterinary Consult: Canine and Feline by Larry Patrick Tilley (Editor), Francis W. K., Jr Smith (Editor).  Hardcover 1997. Technical veterinary reference book with clear, concise summaries. Might be too technical for most people but I have found it to be an indispensable reference.
book32.gif (667 bytes) Veterinary Drug Handbook by Donald C. Plumb. Paperback - 880 pages 3rd pocket edition 1999. Technical drug book that includes drug uses, contraindications, mechanism of action, metabolism, doses, contraindications, and trade names. I use this book frequently.  See the next listing for a more owner-oriented book stars5.gif (240 bytes)
Natural Health Bible for Dogs & Cats: Your A-Z Guide to Over 200 Conditions, Herbs, Vitamins, and Supplements
by Shawn Messonnier.  This comprehensive guide discusses more than 40 common conditions or diseases that can affect your pet and how they can be treated or improved with natural medicine.
The Pill Book: Guide to Medication for Your Dog and Cat Important information about the most commonly prescribed and over-the-counter drugs for cats and dogs.  stars5.gif (240 bytes)
pitcairn.gif (7221 bytes) Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs and Cats. Richard H. Pitcairn, Susan Hubble Pitcairn. 1995.  An A-to-Z encyclopedia of common pet ailments and their treatments also features tips on a do-it-yourself pet checkup, recipes for healthier food, sources of herbal and homeopathic supplies, and more. Easy to understand.  Dr. Pitcairn suggests you use the ideas that suit your beliefs. stars5.gif (240 bytes)
puotinen.gif (13947 bytes) The Encyclopedia of Natural Pet Care by C. J. Puotinen.  Paperback - 300 pages 1998   stars5.gif (240 bytes)
Pets Living With Cancer Pets Living With Cancer: A Pet Owner's Resource by Robin Downing.  Paperback - 142 pages (April 1, 2000). Dr. Robin Downing, a veterinarian who had to confront a cancer diagnosis in her dog, Murphy, found there was no one source for all the questions she faced. This resulting book is a complete guide to treatment and care. Written with the positive but realistic view that cancer does not always mean death, Dr. Downing asks many questions confronted by pet owners and answers them in a comprehensive and caring manner. We organized this book for ease of use and quick reference to all your concerns, including a glossary of terms common to cancer discussions and treatment.  stars5.gif (240 bytes)

General books for cats

siegal_cats.gif (13394 bytes) The Cornell Book of Cats: A Comprehensive and Authoritative Medical Reference for Every Cat and Kitten. Mordecai Siegal (Editor), et al.1997. Hardcover - 508 pages 2nd edition.  Current medical information that covers the whole range of feline health. Outlines first-aid measures that should be taken before an emergency trip to the veterinarian. Step-by-step instructions on in-home follow-up medical care.  stars3_5.gif (290 bytes)
carlson_cat.gif (6306 bytes) Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook. Delbert G. Carlson, D.V.M. and James M. Giffin, M.D. 1995 Hardcover Revised edition. Guidance for all aspects of feline care, from day-to-day care to handling emergencies. Organized by signs and symptoms, it also includes information on feeding and nutrition, medications, pregnancy, and a special section on training. stars5.gif (240 bytes)

The Well Cat Book: The Classic Comprehensive Handbook of Cat Care by Terri McGinnis, Pat L. Stewart (Illustrator). Paperback 1996.  Teaches cat owners how to detect signs of illness, diagnose problems, and begin home treatment--thereby avoiding expensive and often unnecessary trips to the vet. Includes over 100 illustrations and step-by-step instructions. stars5.gif (240 bytes)

The Cat Care Book: All You Need to Know to Keep Your Cat Healthy and Happy by Sheldon L., V.M.D. Gerstenfeld. Paperback - 280 pages 1989.  A basic cat care book.  Charts to help you decide if your cat's illness needs immediate attention by a vet or may be treated at home

The Cat Who Cried for Help; Attitudes, Emotions, and the Psychology of Cats  by Nicholas Dodman. Paperback - 256 pages (1999).  Dr. Nicholas Dodman, professor of behavioral pharmacology at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine and director of the Behavior Clinic, examines aggravating cat habits and undesirable behavior, and shows how modifications in such areas as diet, exercise, and environment cause remarkable improvements in the majority of problem cats. Vital to his treatment is maintaining the cat's dignified and independent nature, an objective sure to please those cat owners irritated by certain kitty traits but concerned first and foremost for the health and well-being of their cats. stars5.gif (240 bytes)
Housecat: How to Keep Your Indoor Cat Sane and Sound by Christine Church. Hardcover - 193 pages 1998. This is the most complete guide to creating a safe, healthy, stimulating world for your cats written specifically for indoor-only cats. Its all here, from how to recognize and alleviate stress to a rundown of every type of litter on the market to how to get cat hair off your couch. stars5.gif (240 bytes)

General books for dogs

siegal.gif (7964 bytes) UC Davis Book of Dogs: The Complete Medical Reference Guide for Dogs and Puppies. School of Veterinary Medicine Staff, Mordecai Siegal. 1995. 560 pages. Authoritative guide for dog owners, breeders, and trainers. The 43 comprehensive chapters include information on selection, nutrition, emergency care, the needs of older dogs, and more. stars3_5.gif (290 bytes)
carlson.gif (5829 bytes) Dog Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook by James M. Giffin.  Hardcover - 548 pages 3rd edition (November 1999). A wonderful reference with chapters on emergencies, worms, infectious diseases, skin care, eyes, ears, nose, the digestive, respiratory, circulatory, nervous, musculoskeletal, and urinary systems, plus sex, whelping, pediatrics, geriatrics, and chapters on cancers and medications. It identifies the possible causes, helps you determine the severity of the condition, and indicates what treatments or actions to take to best insure your dog's good health. stars5.gif (240 bytes)
volhard.gif (5471 bytes) The Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog by Wendy Volhard, Kerry L. Brown. Paperback - 294 pages; 1995. Several detailed reviews on Amazon. stars5.gif (240 bytes)
BLIND_DOGS Living with Blind Dogs. Caroline Levin. A Resource Book and Training Guide for the Owners of Blind and Low Vision Dogs
A-Z of Dog Diseases & Health Problems: Signs, Diagnoses, Causes, Treatment  by Dick Lane, Neil Ewart. Hardcover - 256 pages; 1997 stars5.gif (240 bytes)
American Kennel Club Dog Care and Training by American Kennel Club. Paperback - 214 pages; 1991. Helping today's dog owner deal with dog care demands, there is a bounty of wisdom from the most respected dog registry in the world. There is advice on selecting a dog, what "papers" really mean, how to care for a puppy, and what every dog needs throughout its life. stars5.gif (240 bytes)
Good Dog, Bad Dog: Dog Training Made Easy by Mordecai Siegal, Matthew Margolis (Contributor) Hardcover - 350 pages 1991.  Practical guide to training dogs at home, offering obedience training that works, yet does not alter the dog's personality or alienate his affection. All the essentials are covered using love, praise, and affection as a philosophy of training, and clear and effective solutions are provided for every kind of behavior problem. 100 photographs. stars5.gif (240 bytes)

Pet Loss and Grief Support
Our Pet loss and Grief Support page has a complete listing of some wonderful pet loss books.  Some books that are good for children are noted.  The first few books make excellent gifts for friends who have lost a pet.

Fun and Inspirational - great gift ideas

kosins.gif (10530 bytes) If you know someone who is caring for a "special needs" pet or who has recently lost a pet, this is a nice gift book that you can inscribe.
Maya's First Rose: Diary of a Very Special Love  Kosin's deeply moving tribute to the dog he loves for 18 wonderful years. I have this book and it was a very moving story of dedication and love. It would be a wonderful gift for someone you know who was wholeheartedly dedicated to their pet's well-being. 
stars5.gif (240 bytes)
Cats into Everything. Bob Walker. 1999. More great fun from The Cats' House. and
The Cats' House
. Bob Walker. 1996. A wonderfully fun book with great ideas for building the perfect cat home.
Seven Cats and the Art of Living  by Jo Coudert (Illustrator) the moral lessons she has learned from seven extraordinary cats.  Paperback - 208 pages (1998) stars5.gif (240 bytes)
How to Photograph Dogs: A Comprehensive Guide Paperback - 196 pages; 1998 stars5.gif (240 bytes)
If Only You Knew How Much I Smell You: True Portraits of Dogs 104 pages Gift edition
Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul
Chicken Soup for the Cat and Dog Lover's Soul  
Catnip for the Soul Paperback - 224 pages 1999. Stories, told from a cat's perspective - funny, silly, and true!
What Cats Teach Us: Life's lessons learned from our feline friends.  color photos and insightful captions.

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Updated March 2003
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