This list of the books, videos, and websites on puppy raising and dog training that we recommend. These resources are all from professionals, are based on positive reinforcement training, and cover a wide range of topics.

If you have been reading The Therapy Dog Journey, then this page was created especially for you! These are the books, online courses, and videos selected for their value in teaching puppies the skills they need to be successful therapy dogs. Look for an emphasis on topics like socialization, bite inhibition, and training in public from professional trainers in the descriptions for each resource.

*Note: does not receive anything for your purchases of these products on any website.

Puppy Raising & Training Books

We believe these puppy raising books will help you raise a puppy into a well-adjusted, obedient and confident adult dog that you will enjoy living with!

We recommend purchasing your books from small businesses and independent companies so your support goes to companies that focus solely on publishing and distributing top quality books for pet owners! is one of these companies that we trust and recommend (note: we do not make any money if you purchase through any link on this website!).

Before and After Getting Your Puppy

by Ian Dunbar.

Read our full review of this book here: Before & After Getting Your Puppy – Book Review!

A must-read for all puppy owners! Ian Dunbar’s book takes a wonderful, much-needed look at the stages of development and needs of growing puppies. His book makes it easy to identify exactly what stage your puppy is in and what he needs to be learning.

Dr. Dunbar raises crucial awareness of bite inhibition and socialization. These are incredibly important training aspects for every dog, but especially puppies being raised for therapy work (or other work in the community).

Ian’s Before and After Getting Your Puppy is recommended reading for anyone raising a puppy for work in the community (i.e. service dogs, therapy dogs, and more).

Social, Civil, and Savvy

by Laura VanArendonk Baugh.

Check out our full review of this book here: Social, Civil, and Savvy – Book Review!

This inexpensive book contains a lot of information on socializing puppies (and older dogs). We highly recommend every puppy raiser, whether beginner or experienced, to have a copy of this book!

With this book you will have the tools to raise confident puppies with great focus and social skills. Especially useful read for raising therapy and service dogs who will spend significant time in public!

Beyond the Basics: Unlock Your Dog’s Behavior

by Denise Fenzi.

Set yourself up for success when training your puppy or dog with this book! In Denise’s first book you will learn how to create a training plan and apply the training skills you need to make that plan successful! You’ll learn how to motivate your dog to work with you. Denise includes case studies for behavior problems such as unwanted barking, recall issues, and more.

And, last but not least, Denise talks about failure during training sessions and things such as immaturity, and breed and temperament issues that can contribute to what looks like failure.

Check out another helpful book by Denise Fenzi in the Therapy Dog Training Books section below!

Fired Up, Frantic, and Freaked Out: Training Crazy Dogs from Over-the-Top to Under Control

by Laura VanArendonk Baugh, CPDT-KA KPACTP.

If you feel like your dog’s craziness, fear, or reactivity is getting in the way of life- your going to like this book! The method Laura presents in this book is suitable for everything from barking at the doorbell to reactivity around other dogs or people. Using mat training and lots of positive reinforcement, Laura’s instructions will show you how to change not just your dog’s behavior, but also his emotional response to the things in life that drive him (and you) crazy.

Whether your dog is the kind who gets too happy-excited to control, a fearful sweetheart who needs more courage, or a Reactive Rover who needs to chill out around other dogs – Fired Up, Frantic and Freaked Out can help! The instructions in this book are suitable for pet owners and professionals, for one-on-one training sessions and classes.

Read the sample from the book for an incredible story about one of the author’s own dogs!

Therapy Dog Training Books

These books are especially geared towards or appropriate for training therapy dogs and are recommended in our Therapy Dog Journey series.

Therapy Dogs: Training Your Dog to Reach Others

by Kathy Diamond Davis.

This book really goes into detail about therapy dog work – and not many books do that! Especially helpful are the chapters on the suitability of dogs for therapy work, therapeutic visitation scenarios (visits as a group and visits with one dog), what basic commands and social skills should be taught, and even extra commands and tricks for therapy dogs.

Our favorite chapter is Chapter 5: Conditioning the Dog to Handling. This is a huge part of a therapy dog’s job, yet most books don’t talk about the conditioning process. Chapter 5 combines instruction about motivators (food, praise, petting, and play) with directions for conditioning the dog to petting, grooming, being picked up, staying still and even closing his mouth! This chapter goes into detail on several more useful skills for therapy dogs and is followed by Chapters 6, 7 & 8 on basic commands, social skills and extra lessons for therapy dogs.

Teaming with Your Therapy Dog

by Ann R. Howie.

This little book emphasizes the needs of the dog and the ways handlers can support their therapy dog partners in their job. Ann’s focus is on teaching therapy dog handlers to be fully present – paying attention and engaged in each interaction of the dog and the community. Ann uses the acronym STEPs to represent the four ways a handler can support his/her dog in its job: Speak to your dog conversationally, stay in Touch with your dog, keep your Eyes on your dog, and maintain close Proximity to your dog.

Illustrated by pictures and real-life stories this book prepares therapy dog handlers to work with their dog as a team – meeting the needs of the community and the dog at the same time.

Train Your Dog Like a Pro

by Jean Donaldson.

While this book covers everything from teaching the basic commands to training in new locations and transferring training to another person! These are very necessary skills for therapy dogs who will be working in public and non-pet-friendly places.

I think some of the lessons Jean Donaldson teaches in this book are worth special notice. The lessons on training in new locations covers the dog’s need to acclimate and generalize behaviors to the new location.

Jean includes mat training, which has a wide variety of uses and is especially good for therapy and service dogs in public. The chapter on loose leash walking (separate from heeling which has it’s own chapter) really helps the dog learn to be responsible for keeping its leash loose – all while playing a game for a prize!

Beyond the Back Yard: Train Your Dog to Listen Anytime, Anywhere

by Denise Fenzi.

This excellent training book will take you and your dog beyond the basic commands and show you how to get your dog to comply happily without a “cookie.” If you want to move beyond the basics, to phase out treats, and to take your dog to the pet-friendly places in public , then pick up this book!

Is your dog distracted easily and unable to listen to your commands or maintain his manners? Denise does an amazing job breaking down how to teach your dog to focus and obey around distractions! Follow the lesson plans with step-by-step instructions and pictures on your way to a reliable dog.

A Dog Who’s Always Welcome

by Lorie Long.

Get introduced to the highest standards for therapy dog socialization! Written by a highly successful trainer and writer for several magazines, Lorie Long presents an engaging read on training companion dogs as therapy dogs.

If you’ve ever wondered how assistance/service dogs are socialized as puppies, this book will give you excellent insight from real dogs, trainers, and puppy-raisers. A highly recommended read for therapy dog socialization.

Puppy Raising & Training Videos

Here are some trusted sources of online training advice and instructional videos.

Top Recommended Video Training:
Ian Dunbar’s How to Train a Puppy Online Course

This thorough, yet inexpensive course will give you a look at some of Ian’s puppy classes. Without having to attend a class, you can get a look at different kinds of puppies going through their training. Watch real-life examples of Ian’s methods in action and hear his explanations. Helpful stories, presentations and even videos of adult dog classes to show you the results of Ian’s program will inspire you! You will get access to his books and many great downloads as well.

Top Recommended Puppy Socialization Program:
Puppy Culture 

Puppy Culture is an excellent program for breeders and puppy owners alike. It teaches extensively on healthy socialization and positive exposure for puppies. The information is broken down by the ages and stages of a puppy’s growth. We especially recommend that puppy owners at least check out their Puppy Culture Workbook and Film The Powerful First 12 Weeks That Can Shape Your Puppy’s Future.  Whether you are breeding puppies and can begin the socialization and handling process from day one, whether you’ve got an eight-week-old pup, or even if you have a puppy older than twelve weeks – you will find the 50 lessons and 30 exercises presented in Puppy Culture to be helpful.

Dog Matters Training, Frantic to Focused Online Course

A self-paced video course available by monthly subscription (includes access to other training courses as well). It also includes access to the private Facebook group, trainer feedback, answers to questions, and homework for each lesson. This course is excellent for owners of distracted or reactive dogs.

Simpawtico Dog Training

Simpawtico offers training videos with live examples of training scenarios with professional dog trainer Ian Stone. Now you can access Simpawtico’s online training course: Dog Training Essentials. At a reasonable price, you can get professional instructions on using training tools, how your dog learns, how to keep your dog focused, basic behaviors, teaching sit, stay, and down, how to walk on a leash, potty training, puppy biting, games, and tricks, as well as troubleshooting for common behavioral problems.

Other Resources!

Dogwise Publishing

This company publishes and sells a wide variety of books for dog owners. Take time to scroll through a section of their resources and you’re sure to find help with any dog-related topic. We often recommend purchasing the books we review at My Satisfied Dog from DogWise so your purchase supports an independent distributor and publisher of top quality resources!

Chewy is an excellent source of quality products for your dog. Take advantage of their regular deals, auto-ship option for food and treats and other supplies, and excellent customer service.

Your Purebred Puppy is one of the best places to find accurate dog breed reviews. The author is a trainer and behaviorist who writes from personal experience with different dog breeds. If you are looking to choose a puppy or need to learn about your puppy’s breed this site will help you.