header

Taking Treats Nicely

Some exuberant puppies and older dogs will grab at food treats or chomp down on your hand while taking the treats.  Its worth the effort to teach your puppy to take food gently.

One effective method is to teach them to lick for treats using the “fist of Kong” method.

1. Put a smear of peanut butter or cream cheese in the palm of your hand.

2. Make a fist and then relax you hand and move your thumb so that there is an opening near your thumb. Your hand should be shaped like a kong.

3. Present your hand to the dog.

4. The dog will sniff and then use their tongue to get to the stuff in your fist. When the dog licks your hand, verbally praise your dog and then open your fist and allow him to take another lick or two.

After the dog gets the pattern, you can transition to solid foods, by using a peanut butter smear and also a treat in your hand. When he licks, open your hand and let him eat the treat. The treat should be presented in a open hand with the treat resting on your palm (don’t present a treat between the finger tips).

In the case where you can’t outlast the dog because he is chewing your fist, remove the fist, turn your back and walk away for 5 seconds. It might be necessary to tether the dog so that you can walk away. This doesn’t happen all that often because most dogs quickly learn that they can lick the peanut butter.

For the first rep, present an open hand – this makes it more likely that he’ll lick when you present the fist (and it tests whether he’ll be interested in the smear you are using).

Once you’ve started doing this, use the lick for treats method for delivering treats while doing other training. So when you deliver a treat when luring a sit, use the fist of Kong.

Bookmark and Share

No comments so far. Leave a comment.

No comments yet.

Leave a comment

will not be published