1st Edition

How to Build a Puppy Into a Healthy Adult Dog

By Julia Robertson Copyright 2022
    288 Pages 375 Color Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    288 Pages 375 Color Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    Dogs do not demonstrate discomfort or pain in a way that can be easily translated by us humans, so we often miss that they are physically struggling. Understanding that making some very simple changes to our homes, activities, exercise regimes and how we train our puppies will have a massive positive impact on our dogs' lives.

    Using her world-renowned Galen Myotherapy knowledge and approach, Robertson suggests and explains in detail how small, profoundly important but easy to implement changes can improve the way we not only look after and develop our puppies but also how maintenance of this easy programme continues your puppy’s journey through into healthy adolescence and maturity.

    Environment, exercise and activity habits have deep, ongoing effects and How to Build a Puppy ... into a healthy adult dog explores ways in which positive change can be integrated easily into our normal lives. The book culminates into a full programme called the Galen Myotherapy Puppy Physical Development Programme©.


    • A dedicated section on anatomy, explaining in a functional way how everything in the body interrelates to form a functional moving structure
    • Practical advice that is made logical and easy to interpret by the use of clear comparative descriptions as well as clear diagrams and pictures showing the movement and biomechanics of dogs
    • Exercises and activities in a practical programme, for all situations, that can be followed to help build good foundations
    • A full pictorial explanation of why so many 'traditional' exercise routines and activities are in fact incredibly damaging for our dogs

    This book will help canine professionals better advise their clients, but also empower all readers to make their own changes, as well as having a better all-round understanding to enable more pertinent questions from their vet, breeder or puppy trainer.

    Introduction. 1. Why is Giving Correct Exercise and Activity to your Puppy so Important? 2. Canine Anatomy - A Working Knowledge of How a Dog is Structured. 3. The Physical Constituents of a ‘Joined Up Puppy’. 4. Building your Puppy using the Galen Puppy Physical Development Programme©. 5. Categories Involved with the Puppy’s Development. 6. Part A: Early Puppy Development. Part B: Preparing the Home Environment. 7. What Not to Do! Unsuitable Activities and Why. 8. Equipment. 9.Puppy Massage. 10. Additional Useful Information. Recommended Reading. References. Resources


    Julia Robertson established Galen Therapy Centre in 2002 and since then has worked tirelessly to improve dogs lives and their health. In this time she has treated over 8,000 dogs and trained hundreds of people in Galen Myotherapy techniques. Julia was one of the very first in the UK to understand and treat the effects of adaptive change (or muscular compensation) in dogs and through years of dedication has learned that trends, patterns of behaviour and physical changes occur in a dog when they are suffering with muscular pain. This quantification of the nature of the changes has now been formalised into the Galen Comfort Scale©, which is being used in the many studies and treatments that Galen are involved in. In late 2019 they changed their organisational name from 'Galen Therapy Centre' to 'Galen Myotherapy'. Julia speaks all around the world and runs an International Schools program.

    I have trained, observed and solved problems for tens of thousands of dogs during my 55 years as a dog trainer. In the beginning we did not think much about what impact training could have on the dogs’ bodies, and vice versa. Yet observing dogs and their movements, and how they felt, we understood that we had to look at that aspect as well. Since then, thanks to new technology, recent years of studies have given us more knowledge about physiology, anatomy and neurology. It has been a real awakening.

    When I met Julia several years ago, I saw how important it is for us to combine the two: the trainer skills, and the skills in anatomy and physiology. Working with dogs, we need knowledge in both. I have had the great pleasure of cooperating with Julia, observing dogs for coaching. We both observed the dog, Julia using her skills in seeing the physical details, and I observing the dog’s behaviour and mentality. Summing up, we had the same opinion on what kind of problem we addressed, and what should be done for rehabilitation and treatment. It was an amazing - almost startling - experience.

    Since then, I have been convinced about the importance for knowledge on several levels. It is not enough to be educated as a trainer or behaviourist. If you want to do the best job possible, you need also to have some knowledge of the physical side of the dog and be able to see when physical help and treatment is necessary. Then we can at least send the dog to the right specialist. Following this revelation, I asked Julia to write a book about her work, giving people more tools for helping dogs, and in many ways changing the way we train and handle them.

    And now the book is here! It is such a pleasure for me to welcome it. It is so practical and well explained, Julia’s love for dogs shining through every page. For me it is an important book and I believe it will have a huge impact on our work with dogs in the future.

    -- Turid Rugaas, International Dog Trainer and author of On Talking Terms with Dogs: Calming Signals