About Patricia

Patricia McConnell, Ph.D., is an author, speaker, and applied animal behaviorist who has made a lifelong commitment to improving the relationship between people and animals. She is known worldwide as an expert on canine and feline training and behavior and for her engaging and knowledgeable books, speeches, and seminars. She is the author of the much-acclaimed books The Other End of the Leash (published in 13 languages), For the Love of a Dog, and her memoir, The Education of Will. Her self-published books and booklets on dog training and companion animal behavior problems have sold over 750,000 copies, and continually receive rave reviews from professional trainers, veterinarians, and animal lovers from all over the world. She was the behavior columnist for The Bark magazine, “the New Yorker of Dog Magazines,” and wrote for many other publications, including APDT’s Chronicle of the Dog and Natural History. She has made numerous television appearances, including spots with Anderson Cooper on CNN, Martha Stewart, and Wayne Brady.

Patricia saw clients for serious behavioral problems for thirty years, and taught “The Biology and Philosophy of Human/Animal Relationships” Zoology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison for twenty-five years. For fourteen years she dispensed advice about behavior problems, and information about animal behavior research, on Wisconsin Public Radio’s Calling All Pets, which was heard in over 110 cities around the country. She continues to enjoy radio appearances, including on Wisconsin Public Radio’s The Larry Meiller Show.

A highly-sought after speaker, McConnell has presented seminars all over the United States, and in Canada, Germany, Australia, Sweden, Belgium, Scotland and New Zealand. Retired from seeing cases in 2018, Patricia stays active by writing a popular blog, The Other End of the Leash, making numerous appearances on podcasts, speaking about her books and animal behavior, and having an active social media presence (over 300K Facebook and Instagram followers combined). She is currently living a life-long dream by working on a mystery novel series. (Which, of course, includes dogs!)

Patricia received her Ph.D. in Zoology in 1988 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison researching dog behavior and communication between professional trainers and working domestic animals. Her dissertation received the prestigious Allee Award from the Animal Behavior Society that same year. Patricia co-founded Dog’s Best Friend, Ltd in 1988, now owned and operated by Aimee Moore (see their website for more information about dog training classes and behavior consultations in the Madison, WI area). Patricia and her husband, Jim, have two dogs and a very spoiled flock of sheep on a small farm in Southwestern Wisconsin. Her gardens and her beloved Border Collies, Maggie and Skip, keep her outside and active. Trisha suffers from Separation Anxiety each time she leaves her farm, but loves continuing to spread the word about the joys of understanding the animals around us.

[This is an old video, but it celebrates the memories of beloved dogs, Tootsie and Willie, so I’ve left it in:]


Learning Center

Want to learn more about dogs? Look here for a treasure trove of Patricia’s articles, blogs and videos about dog training, canine health and behavior, and solving behavior problems. Includes links to other helpful resources.


Clear and engaging, Patricia’s books & DVDs are invaluable resources for professionals and dog lovers alike. If your dog could, she’d beg you to click here and check them out.

Trisha’s Blog

Join thousands of dog lovers around the world in an ongoing inquiry about canine behavior, and follow the adventures of Patricia (2 legs), Willie, Maggie, & Tootsie (4 legs), and a very spoiled flock of sheep.


"The Education of Will delves deep into the minds of people and dogs, and into the effects of trauma, showing that healing is possible. McConnell gives a voice to those who can’t speak in words and provides hope for fearful animals everywhere."

—Temple Grandin, author of Animals Make Us Human and Animals in Translation.

What Others Are Saying