Best Potty Training Books for Parents & Toddlers

It’s that dreaded moment in parenting. Ranking up there with letting your teenager drive a car, move away and attend college, it is time to potty train.

I have been stressed out about potty training since I was pregnant four years ago. Yes, pregnant! Perhaps the thought of peeing on my carpet or pooping on the floor seriously grosses me out.

We’ve been doing on/off potty introduction to our toddler since he was 2 years old. For a while he was enjoying using the little potty and the regular toilet to pee in. Life happened, and second baby showed up, so the training stop – too much new stuff for a little brain is stressful.

I also had a few yelling matches when my toddler peed on the toys, floor, sofa because he refused to wear a diaper; and then thought it funny to pee on everything.

This time around, we are more serious and calm about what is to happen. To crowdsource answers, I took my question to my Facebook community: What potty training books should we use?

Here are my friend’s favorites along with a few excerpts from Amazon reviewers. Remember, this post contains affiliate links. I make commission from the sale of product through them – they don’t affect your cost at all. It’s a win for everyone!

Potty Training Books for Parents:
Oh Crap! Potty Training: Everything Modern Parents Need to Know to Do It Once and Do It Right

Early-Start Potty Training
“I agree with complaints about it, though. It could be a more in-depth “how to”. The author feels very strongly about this and tends to come off as a bit hostile- likening diapers to starving a baby. Although I agree with the idea of diaper-less babies in theory, it’s not always possible and diapers aren’t hugely damaging. The severity of the author’s position can be off-putting. I agree whole-heartedly with the idea behind EC and wish we had been able to start it from birth, and I still found the author to be a bit heavy handed. Someone who is on the fence or even not convinced may be put off by it.

I found the personal accounts to be the most helpful part. Seeing a variety of descriptions about what this has looked like and how it worked for people was encouraging.”

Once Upon a Potty — Boy
“This book is perhaps a bit graphic to the uninitiated, but then again, so is potty training, especially with inquisitive toddlers. I purchased this to read to my son when he sat on the potty for longer periods of time when he was first potty training, and he loved it. He helped read some of the funny parts–“Was it a hat? No, it wasn’t a hat. Was it a milk bowl for the cat? No, it wasn’t a milk bowl for the cat. . .It was a potty!” and he was fascinated by the straightforward explanations. I was blessed by a child that potty trained early, but this book certainly helped him understand some of the tougher questions of potty training. Cute illustrations, pleasant storyline, all around helpful. I even purchased an additional one for a friend’s son who was not showing any interest in potty training, and he loved it too.

One addition: We personally choose to say “pee” and “poop” at our house, rather than the other descriptors like “pee-pee”, etc. used by this book. In other reviews people seem to really have a gripe with having to change the wording, but I own several other potty training books and even an Elmo DVD, and none of those use “our” wording for all parts and processes, either. I like to personalize books for my son, and, as in this one, I changed not only the “pee”-type words, but also changed the little boy Joshua’s name to my son’s name instead. It’s not a big deal, that’s just how I choose to read books. Also, the tone of this book is pretty tongue-in-cheek funny for the adults reading it, or at the least to me. I got pretty sick of reading the other potty training books we owned, but this one was always welcome.”

Potty Training in 3 Days: The Step-by-Step Plan for a Clean Break from Dirty Diapers

Oh Crap Potty Training from Me to You
This website blog is from certified consultant Jen L’Italien. NOT related to the Oh Crap Book, this blog has great pointers and resources from training to issues.

Potty Training Books for Toddlers:

Lift-the-Flap Very First Questions and Answers: What is Poop?
There is a British version of this book called What is Poo. The only difference is that they use ‘loo’ and ‘nappy’ instead of ‘toilet’ and ‘diaper’. This book is geared towards potty training toddlers and talks about food, digestion, the human body. It’s fun and a lift the flap style book.

Potty
This is a simple but well drawn book from Leslie Patricelli’s board books series. I would reserve this for younger toddlers, under 2 years old, as the older ones may find it a little boring.

Next up will be potty training products you need to get started on this adventure!