Like humans, dogs like being rewarded. A treat for good behavior, a treat for a trick well done, a treat for being good through a bathing session – these are all things that make you and your furry friend happy. While it’s good for your dog to work hard to get the treats, sometimes a little incentive is always a good way to make sure that your pet keeps working at it. If you award a child a gold star for a job well done in class, the next time the same thing comes up, the child is going to be enthusiastic to do the same thing! It works just as well with dogs and lots of people don’t believe in it, but there are benefits to using treats when training your dog. The more you reward them, the more inclined they are to do what you ask of them.
The treats work as a way to get your dog to do what you want them to do and it’s also a reward for doing something that was asked of them. For example, if you want your dog to sit, you lure them in with a treat and train them into the sitting position before you can hand over the treat. It’s not going to happen overnight, but it’s definitely something that they will get accustomed to and eventually when giving the command to ‘sit’ will get the right reaction out of your pet.
As mentioned, another way is to reward your pet for doing something the right way. Whether it’s because they sat down when commanded or they did what they were asked with their toys or were just being a really good sport that day, a reward goes a long way. It also builds a level of trust between you and your pet, because they instantly know that when they do something right and when they do something good, they’ll get a treat! And making you happy is just as important for them.
Remember not to bribe your pets to do something, the reward at the end of the command is not a bribe, it’s more like a thank you. Bribing them definitely doesn’t build trust and that would put a strain on the relationship you’ve already built up with them.
Always keep the treats small. Don’t over feed. Even if your pet does everything under the sun that you’ve asked of them, don’t give them too much at one short. You need to keep it within the diet, because that’s what counts. You don’t want your dog to be uncomfortable at the end of the day.
Eventually, phase out the treats. It’s just in the beginning that you really need to reward them after everything. Once they’re used to following a certain routine, treating them can happen every now and then. Your dog will love it and you and it’ll build a good strong relationship too.