There are multiple kinds of trainings for your dog which includes treats and snacks as an essential ingredient, in trainings they act as positive reinforcements whenever you want to appreciate your dog for any progress that he made. But treats are not just about the training sessions and strategies to make him learn a new trick, but it is an expression of love, and interaction between you and you dog.
But over-feeding your dog is harmful too, according to the a 2016 APOP report 54% of dogs in the United States of America were reported to be obese. So we are sure you won’t want your dog to bloat, have gastric conditions or become obese. Therefore there some specific directives you need to follow before you feed your dog treats.
So before you treat your dog make sure you are following the below mentioned directives before giving your dog a treat.
What? – Planning the treat
Make a note of daily meals and treats –
The usual mistake that dog owners do is feeding the dog out of love with the treats that their dog loves without keeping an account of what they are feeding and in what quantity are they are feeding. We recommend that you keep a log of the nature and quantity of meals and snacks your dog has everyday. Making of a log is suggested so that you do not feed your dog surplus calories than the daily calorie requirement.
Calculate your Dog’s Daily Maintenance Calorie Requirement –
we would suggest to get your dog examined by an expert or vet who will calculate calorie requirement for your dog taking into account multiple factors such as your dog’s age and physical activity.
Include healthy treats –
Though the departmental stores are filled with snacks and treats for your dogs according to his daily calorie requirements but such treats usually lose their nutritional value because of excessive preservatives and less water content, so we recommend some natural raw treats like carrots, green beans, cooked sweet potatoes, cooked squash and bananas. Such treats will not just help to maintain daily calorie balance but also prevent multiple diseases to worry your dog.
When? – Time of the day when you should feed your dog with treats
The ideal time to feed your dog treats is generally in between the meals. Treats are supposed to be elements of excitement for your dog, especially when you are using them as a tool for training and positive reinforcements. Once your dog is full and complacent with the meal he just had he will not be interested in snatching that thing in your fist and will neither show any interest which is the entire point of having a treat as an ingredient in training the dog.
How? – Precautions to take while feeding the treat
Don’t hold the treat up –
People usually hold the treat high, and it is fascinating especially for kids when they throw the treat for their dog to catch it, in such a case your dog will start jumping in order to receive his treat. Now when you will offer a treat to your dog in this manner the wrong behaviour of jumping and grabbing the treat with force gets reinforced.
How to Feed Him Then?
Well, if it is not a part of the training give your pooch his snacks without making him to struggle a lot. The best way of offering the treat is by getting close to the dog’s face, keep your hands full of treat either below the mouth of your dog’s face or at the level of his chest. Let your dog sniff and feel the treat in your hand and then gently receive it.
Training Your Dog to be Gentle About Treats
Your dog needs to learn to take his treats gently and definitely without any risk of getting the person feeding the treat harmed. If you notice your dog impatiently grabbing the treats from you then we would suggest you to practice the following mentioned training to get him rid of this bad behavior, and do not worry it is very simple
Step 1 – Hold the treat with your fist closed in front of your dog. If it uses aggression or uses his paws and jaws to grab the treat, then keep your fist closed and do not allow him to snatch the treat. Then wait for your dog to relax while allowing him to sniff and touch your fist with his nose, when he gets calm, open your hand and allow him to eat that treat from your palm.
Step 2 – Repeat this process to fortify your dog’s connection of gentle and calm receipt of treats with a reward.
While training your dog for a calm receipt of treats ensure that your hands and fingers are protected which you can ensure by using garden gloves.
Congratulations, you have successfully made a gentleman out of your dog.
You need to acknowledge the fact that treats that are meant for humans are not necessarily meant for your dogs too, not just they will not like human treats sometimes but it also might make them sick. You might like munching choco chip cookies while binge watching episodes of your favorite web series but the same chocolate can make your dog sick. So dogs have special treats taking care of their special needs, you need to find out which best suits your dog Many dog owners unintentionally get their dogs spoiled by feeding their dogs at the wrong moments. Ignore the bad behavior and wait until your dog becomes calm and quiet or switches towards an appropriate behavior, once it does only then treat and reward your dog.
I committed this mistake a year ago, I fed my dog treats every time he entered my room and started scratching my bedroom door to get him away. This behavior of my dog became more incorrigible and stubborn as the days passed, but I got him rid of this bad habit by the very same treats. Feeding the right amount of treat at a correct time in a correct way will help you train your dog.