Dog Training Treats
Dog training treats are an integral part of training your pet using positive reinforcement, which is always the recommended way of teaching a dog to do anything. Using negativity will only result in a fearful, distrusting dog who would have otherwise thrived with kindness and patience.
Tips On How To Use Dog Training Treats
Dog training treats can be used to redirect your dog's behavior, mold new ones, and be the ideal motivator. However, treats must be used correctly and too much of them can cause your dog to be dependent upon them, something you definitely do not want to happen. Luckily there's an easy way to avoid this problem.
Once your dog has mastered the trick or task you're trying to teach them with the benefit of treats, use the same hand signal or word you have used when training with the treats, but keep a few hidden in your pocket. Once your dog does the desired action with you only doing the hand signal and no treat, reward them immediately after with one treat.
If your dog outright refuses to do the behavior without a treat in your hand, you know you've been using them for too long when training. But have patience, they will get the message eventually if you are persistent.
Dog Training Treats At A Glance
Training treats should be small enough to gulp down in one single bite. Dogs are notorious for having short attention spans so you don't want to give him or her something that takes time to stop and chew, thus forgetting what the reward was even for. Soft, meaty treats are best when using for training purposes rather than hard and crunchy or those that are too chewy. Watch for the fat content if you're feeding your dog commercial training treats, as some can contain too much and lead to weight gain.
If you decide to make your own treats for your dog there are a few things you should keep in mind first. Small pieces of cooked meats or hot dogs or little pieces of cheese are all fine to use as training treats but be sure to use plain, white cheese that's free of dyes. These foods can also be high in fat, so be sure you're using very small pieces and not feeding them too many each day. And remember that anything crunchy or crumbly will defeat the purpose of getting your dog to associate eating the treat with doing a certain behavior.
3 Of The Best Brands
Here are three of the best brands of training treats to consider based on ingredients, price, and consumer opinion:
Zuke's Mini Naturals Dog Treats
The perfect size for training, these treats are available in chicken, peanut butter, and salmon flavors. Trainers often recommend these treats, which only have two calories each, as they hold their shape, are small enough to fit several in a bag or pocket, and dogs seem to love their taste. A 6-ounce package costs around $6.
Charlee Bear Dog Treats With Liver
These treats are also the ideal size for training and each one contains only three calories and no added sugars, preservatives, or artificial colors. Pet owners say they like these treats because they're easy to hold in the pocket without crumbling or staining. A 16-ounce bag of these treats costs around $6.
Pro-Treat Beef Liver Freeze Dried Dog Treats
Made of 100% beef liver with no additives or preservatives, these treats were once only used by professional dog trainers but are now a favorite of pet owners, who say their dogs will do just about anything for the taste. A 4-ounce bucket of these treats costs around $8.50.
Dog training treats can be wonderful to use when working with your dog on positive reinforcement. Not only does positive reinforcement help you build a deep, strong relationship with your dog, but it also will keep him or her acting in a well behaved manner.
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