From 0 to 60 in One Launch Day! My new bestseller.

Fired Up, Frantic, and Freaked Out

If I sound a little dazed or in shock as I write this, it’s because I am.

Monday morning my non-fiction book Fired Up, Frantic, and Freaked Out: Training Crazy Dogs from Over-the-Top to Under Control released. I hadn’t really prepared much in the way of release; a number of people knew I was working on the project, I had mentioned it once, I think, to my KPACTP discussion list, but I hadn’t actually announced a launch date or done much hype.

But once it was out, it exploded. At least, for a niche non-fiction book, I consider that an explosion. My Facebook feed was filled with shared links.

Yesterday afternoon I glanced at Amazon and noticed that I’d hit the Top 10 of the Kindle Dog Training category! And yeah, sure, that’s a niche category, but I’m totally counting that as a success.

And today I’m in the Top 30 of all Dog Training books, print and electronic, and at this very moment #57 of all Dog books, period. ZOMG.

Now, I also am fully aware that isn’t quite as impressive as it sounds, because it’s fairly simple to game the Amazon bestseller system and it certainly doesn’t mean I’m going to stay this high or sell a bazillion copies. But I didn’t set out to try to game the Amazon system, it’s all been natural, and I’m quite pleased at even these achievements.

And then — and then! — the feedback started. Oh my gosh, I’m not even the melty type and I’m getting all squishy inside.

OMG! I’m going to love this book. LOVE your writing style. Already a few pages in over my lunch and it’s sucking me in!!!

I just emailed two clients and told them to buy it.

WOW!!! This book is awesome, thank you for writing it! I’m not the type of person who usually reads books, (ADD) I get bored, but since I decided to get serious with my training, I also decided to start reading. The last two books I read I had a very hard time trying to get through, I had to force myself but THIS book! This book is like a breath of fresh air to me! So thank you, thank you, thank you for getting me excited about reading again!

It just makes me feel like warm puppies inside. :)

In short, THANK YOU to everyone who shared links and tweeted and purchased. You guys are The Awesome. Please remember to post reviews on retail pages (one of the single biggest things you can do to help any book) and remember that you’re super. :)

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

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

Series: Animal Behavior & Training (non-fiction), Book 1
Genre: Nonfiction
ASIN: 0985934921
ISBN: 9780985934927

Some dogs need a little help.

Buy now!
About the Book
“I’m loving it! Laura has managed not only to write a clear and incredibly important book, she’s really funny too! Her way of writing, the images in her language, and the diagrams make this book really stand out; there’s no way to misunderstand the concepts she’s presenting.” Emelie Johnson Vegh, co-author of Agility Right from the Start

Some dogs need a little help.

Some dogs are afraid, or excited, or reactive. Dogs that “don’t listen” and “go crazy” don’t live the lives we –- or they –- want. Fired Up, Frantic, and Freaked Out can change that. Simple steps and an accessible, conversational tone from award-winning, internationally-known trainer Laura VanArendonk Baugh CPDT-KA KPACTP make calming the agitated dog not only possible, but pleasant. Inside you’ll learn how to
  • Achieve change in short, simple training sessions of a minute or less
  • Maximize the effects of natural brain chemistry
  • Know when to call in medical help
  • “Clean up” unreliable behaviors in both overexcited sport dogs and pets at home
  • Recognize how fear, aggression, and excitement are variants of the same root problem
The conversational tone is both informative and fun — very accessible, and it feels like the reader has a consulting trainer standing at her shoulder! Bring your dog from emotional to thoughtful, and enjoy a calmer, more enriched life with your best friend.
Look Inside
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the page above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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  1. I really enjoyed reading your book and will be posting a great review on Amazon (which is where I purchased the book from). After reading the book I was left with a few questions that I am hoping you can answer for me.

    1) Should I continue to teach him other things during the weeks/months we are doing targeting and mat work? For example, I am training “sit” and “stay” using a combination of luring, shaping, and positive reinforcement. Is it confusing for him to learn multiple things at once? I would break each specific task/command/activity into different training sessions, but I still don’t know if that is too much.

    2) My puppy gets extremely excited (and probably a bit nervous) around other dogs. Our local animal shelter has free training classes, which I initially wasn’t planning to attend because of his reactivity. However, the trainers there encouraged me to attend and allowed my puppy to go into his own private room to train. But, he still gets fairly worked up and often doesn’t listen to commands he normally listens to. The trainers seem to think it is a good idea to keep bringing him because he will “get used to it” over time. After reading your book I am not so sure… I am now thinking that I should slowly build up to going to the shelter using the techniques you describe in your book. Is this what you would recommend?

    3) My puppy already has a towel that he lays on in our living room; he automatically goes to the towel when he is out of his crate and he definitely sees it as his “spot” in the living room. I am tempted to use this towel for mat training, but I am concerned that the towel (a) looks like every other towel we have in the house and also looks like the one in his crate and so he may not be able to distinguish the “relax” towel from other towels he sees regularly and (b) although he is generally relaxed on the towel, he likely has lots of other associations tied to the towel as well. Would you recommend using a new mat that is distinctive from other things we use around the house? Or is it ok to use the towel he is familiar with?

    Thanks so much for your help! I am so excited to use your training techniques with my puppy!!!

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed it! and thank you in advance for the review. (R+ for me!)

      Most of my behavior stuff happens over at, so check that out as well, but in order of your questions:

      1) Absolutely continue to teach other things as well. Just work on one behavior per session (you can switch to another with a short break in between).

      2) I haven’t seen your dog, obviously, but I think you’re right, usually I’d build up to going. You don’t want him to think that wrapped about the axle is the “norm” for being in those places! Definitely work in your own room, if you have the choice, and at your own pace. Maybe your first visit is just a few minutes — go in, settle on the mat in the room, get fabulous treats, and then go home before it has a chance to go bad — perfect! (I’ve done that myself!)

      3) That’s great! It’s not wrong to use that towel, but if I really want the mat to be solid and reliable, I’d keep one that *only* means “chill and be calm.” Maybe a small blanket, so he can immediately tell the different texture but is still portable? Ultimately, the mat itself will be less important, and you can use any towel or mat, or none at all.

      Hope this was helpful! If you have more questions, please email me through my training site ( or even check out the consults there. Happy training!

      • Thank you so much for your speedy reply and for your helpful tips. I will definitely check out your other site, which I was previously unaware of. I am so excited to put your training into action! I have a PhD in psychology and am very familiar with the types of learning you are using in your book, so your training technique makes so much sense to me. Thank you!

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