Incorporating Treats into Your Training

Incorporating Treats into Your Training

treat trainign dogs

A while back we posted an article that discussed the importance and timing of rewarding your dog during a training session.  As you learned from that article, all rewards don’t have to be based around food or treats.  However, this article is dedicated solely to the good old fashioned edible reward!  Here are some things to consider when incorporating treats into your dog’s training sessions.

  • Find something that they enjoy.  Some dogs are picky so make sure you find the right type of treat that will help make the motivation and reward a bit more enjoyable for them.
  • Consider a soft treat.  Soft treats (like Pup Peroni or Bil Jac) are great for training because they can be easily broken up into small pieces and your dog can easily chew them and the training can continue!
  • The calories quickly add up!  Taking this quiz about the calorie content in treats may surprise you.  In order to keep your dog at an ideal weight, be sure to make adjustments to your dog’s food to account for the added calories, or you can actually use their dinner as treats during a training session.
  • Consider using a Lickety Stick.  Unlike the hard treats that will leave a bunch of crumbs in your pockets, a Lickety Stick is clean, easy to use, low in calories, and dogs love it!
  • A treat should not be a bribe.  It’s funny, I have seen some dogs hear a command and then look into the owner’s hand to see if a treat is present; they’re so smart!  You don’t have to issue a treat for every single command.  Mix it up and keep them guessing, but with or without a treat, they need to listen.
  • Be aware of the limitations.  Treats are great, we constantly encourage our clients to use them, but realize that a treat will most likely not be enough of a lure to get your dog off of the squirrel that they are chasing.  Be sure to keep your dog in a position where you can ensure their safety and have them be successful!

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