Teaching your puppy using force free training needn’t be difficult if you have the right food to motivate them. In this blog post, we’ll talk about the best dog treats for training that you can use to reward your dog.
In lots of books and articles by dog trainers, and at training class, you’ll hear the term “high-value rewards” being mentioned. But what are high-value rewards? In short, they’re any tasty morsels that are irresistible to dogs, that your pup loves and wants more than anything else.
If you’re trying to train your pup to do a new behavior, or are working with your dog in a distracting environment, any good dog trainer will tell you it’s important to have high-value rewards in your training pouch to keep them motivated and make learning fun.
Let’s have a look at several popular options to use as positive reinforcement for your pooch.
Manufactured dog biscuits and dried treats
Many companies make snack packets of treats. But if you give your pet too many, they might become overweight because these treats can be high in calories and carbs. They may also contain artificial colors or flavors, unnatural preservatives and other questionable ingredients.
They’re not particularly handy to use for training as they can be chewy and are difficult to tear into tiny bits, so you have to give a whole biscuit that takes time to chew up and finish.
Big biscuits might cause them to feel full, which can make it more difficult for them to learn. When they have a lot of chewing and crunching work to do every time, this can slow down your session considerably.
A soft treat with a pliable texture can help us to get more reps in. This can be better for giving your furry friend extra encouragement because they are easy to cut into bite sized treats to be eaten quickly. Above all, when picking store bought treats for your dog to eat, make sure to check the ingredient label.
Fresh cooked real meats
Many of my dog training clients will tell you that their dogs adore the delicious flavor of cooked chicken and beef. This can be low-fat, high-protein, that is packed with health advantages. It may assist in managing Fido’s weight and give them essential proteins, vitamins, and minerals.
Good dog treats with nutritious high-grade ingredients can be expensive. Surprisingly, cooked meats can be quite a cheap alternative to manufactured dog treats, which is why it’s so popular among canine owners.
You can break it easily into very small pieces, allowing you to offer small goodies to your dog, making it particularly ideal for little dogs who can easily devour their entire daily calorie allowance quickly during training.
Some people worry that giving their dog human food will make them beg, but it’s all about the context. As long as you keep it for training and don’t feed them from your plate, this shouldn’t be an issue.
Cooked meat is a fantastic option for your pet’s overall health and wellbeing, making really easy high value dog treats that dogs love the taste of, but keep it in the fridge for freshness between sessions.
Most pet parents will tell you their dog likes cheese, so it’s another great alternative. It’s also beneficial for pups because it contains essential proteins and calcium they require for growing up strong.
It needn’t be an expensive option since you can break it up to the perfect size – remember we’re going for quality rather than quantity, after all! String cheese is particularly convenient to carry too.
This is an excellent choice for all the benefits that your furry friend will get from it. Because cheese can be high in fat and is quite calorific, feed it to your dog in moderation.
Puppies adore sausage, but it isn’t particularly good for them. It’s high in salt, so give them only a little bit at a time. Given enough sausage, it might lead to weight gain, therefore only use it for training rather than everyday consumption.
Because it is quite stinky, it’s a good idea to put some sausage or hotdog in a Tupperware or zippy bag with their daily ration of kibble, so the smells mingle and increase the value of their dry food. This can provide them with a variety of tastes for regular enrichment and training without making it too fattening.
There are many different types of dog treats you can give your furry friend to motivate them during training. Whichever option you choose, make sure it is something your pup really enjoys to keep their attention in stressful situations and environments, and that it is healthy for them as well. As always, consult with your veterinarian before making any changes to their diet.
- The best training rewards are tiny and squishy, making them simple for you to handle and allowing your dog to consume them rapidly.
- Some people feed their dogs liver treats, steak, unsalted lunch meats, cheerios, or whatever their dog prefers.
- Keep track of your dog’s favorites and try out a variety of things. Every time you’re working to train a new or important behavior, pull their favorites out.
Thanks for reading and I hope you found this useful. What’s your dog’s favorite training treat that makes them start drooling?
Grab yourself a great training treat pouch to make it easy and quick to reward your dog.
Check out this post on using marker words to train your dog.