World-renowned dog behaviourist teaches his Zen technique for training your puppy


Eight Weeks to Train Your Pup and Create a Lifelong Bond

Published by Penguin Random House, 05 November 2019, RRP: $45.00

Animal psychologist and zoologist Mark Vette came to fame with global television show ‘Purina Pound Pups to Dog Stars.’ He also taught dogs to drive and fly, which turned him into something of a YouTube sensation.

Vette has been studying and working with animals in New Zealand and overseas for 40 years, using a unique Zen approach to training and creating positive behaviours. In Puppy Zen, he offers puppy owners his wealth of experience, expertise and encouragement in training their puppies, and shows how to create a harmonious, lifelong bond.

Puppy Zen is published to coincide with the forthcoming holiday season, when people often welcome new puppies into their lives. Comprehensive and insightful, the book delves into the fascinating history of the role of pups within the wolf pack and how dogs evolved from wolves; vital background information for understanding what makes your new puppy tick! Vette reveals the
ancestral meaning of important dog behaviours enabling you to learn how to mimic nature. By tapping into and reinforcing these ancient behaviour systems, you can speed up a puppy’s learning substantially.

Prevention is better than cure, so Vette emphasises the crucial formative period for puppies (3–16 weeks), for raising social, resilient and happy puppies. He reveals how to do this and teaches each new skill, day-by-day, week-by-week. Vette says that if puppy owners did the right thing at the right time in a puppy’s life, we would transform dog behaviour in New Zealand and reduce the 13,000 plus dog bites that occur every year.

Puppy Zen includes chapters about choosing a puppy, forming a critical lifelong bond with your puppy; training foundations (tools and techniques); building a shared language (the Zen sit and Zen down are so much more than ordinary commands); what to train and when; house training; socialisation; teaching puppies not to bite or indulge in continual barking, jumping up or other antisocial behaviours.

Puppy Zen is a transformative guide to puppy training; a detailed and practical guide, which combines the latest cognitive science alongside modern, loving, training techniques. Illustrated with irresistible puppy photos by renowned animal photographer Rachael McKenna, plus down-to-earth how-to shots of the training methods.

Mark Vette will be delivering a series of puppy training seminars in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch in November 2019 and ten regional New Zealand centres in March 2020. For more information about these seminars, please go to:

MARK VETTE was born and educated in New Zealand. He has starred in several popular television programmes, including UK show Dogs Might Fly, in which he taught former rescue dogs to fly a plane. He has trained animals for many iconic New Zealand commercials, from the Toyota ‘bugger’ dog, to the Pukekos in the Genesis advertisements. Mark runs an animal behaviour clinic and mentoring company and has created a companion, online training programme called Dog Zen. Mark’s first book, Dog Zen, has sold over 10,000 copies. He lives on the Coromandel Coast.

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