What the Dog Knows

The Science and Wonder of Working Dogs

What the Dog Knows

  • 1
A Simon & Schuster audiobook. Simon & Schuster has a great book for every listener.
  • Simon & Schuster Audio | 
  • 352 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442367913 | 
  • October 2013
List Price $23.95 (price may vary by retailer)
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for What the Dog Knows includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Cat Warren. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.



Researchers have only just begun to understand dogs’ olfactory abilities. The mystery deepens with scent-detection dogs. What started as a hobby to train her unruly German shepherd puppy transformed into a passion, as Cat Warren, a science journalism professor, started to train Solo as a cadaver dog and learn about the complex world of working canines. Combining powerful storytelling with painstaking research, Warren takes us on a fascinating journey to learn what the dog knows.


Topics and Questions for Discussion

1. Why does author Cat Warren believe researchers have studied vision more than olfactory sense? Why do you think it receives less attention in the research community?

2. How do some of the training methods used for working dogs differ from training companion dogs? Do you think every dog needs a job? Why was having a job so important for Solo?

3. Both Nancy and Mike encouraged Cat to “let go” when it came to training Solo. see more

Articles About This Book

Tips on life and love logo salmon

Posted on Tips on Life & Love

Posted by Sharon Knolle

June 5 kicks off Pet Appreciation Week, so be sure and lavish even more love on your favorite furry friends for all the things they do (and in some cases, don't). Besides the unconditional love we get from our pets—not to mention free face...

About the Author

Cat Warren
© Lissa Gotwals

Cat Warren

Cat Warren is a professor at North Carolina State University, where she teaches science journalism, editing, and reporting courses. She lives with her husband and their German shepherds, Jaco, in Durham, North Carolina. Visit CatWarren.com.