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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Gunner is very laid back and isn't extremely food motivated. When doing a training session, I'm having trouble finding a good treat that keeps his attention. The treats I have now he doesn't get really excited about. What's your dog's favorite treat? What have you found that keeps their attention and keeps them excited about training? The brand and type would be helpful so i can order offline if needed....
 

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Gunner is very laid back and isn't extremely food motivated. When doing a training session, I'm having trouble finding a good treat that keeps his attention. The treats I have now he doesn't get really excited about. What's your dog's favorite treat? What have you found that keeps their attention and keeps them excited about training? The brand and type would be helpful so i can order offline if needed....
Sometimes it's also about building the excitement for training and training at the right time. Do you have him work for any of his meals?

I pick 'foodies' so mine work for kibble. They'd work of pieces of cardboard to boot :) but if I had a non-eater I'd try some regular string cheese, chicken and if that all failed, I'd make tuna brownies. However, I'd also mix in regular kibble with all those so he doesn't get stuck just working for high value treats. Make training fun, make it seem like a game, stop when they want more.

Living with Dogs - Canine Coaching



This is kibble. See how at the end, he still wants to PLAY the game. I might do 5 sessions of this with some play in between. Then take a break for an hour, 2 hours, do something similar later. Engage the dog in the training.

start heel - YouTube
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the tips! :) Gunner doesn't get excited about a whole lot lol...he's extremely laid back. He is very smart and obedient though and responds well to training sessions...he just doesn't seem like he enjoys it as much as I wish he would. I do make him work for his meals. I vary up commands but he always has to sit and wait at least. I'm trying to make training more fun for him and to find a treat that will motivate him a bit more...something that he can get excited about. He's not a big eater anyways. He eats a lot, but not all at once. I free feed him because he prefers to take a bite or two at a time and walk away.
 

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Is he motivated by toys or play? You don't HAVE to use food at all.

That said,
Hot Dogs
Bits of Cheese
Deli ham (I use this to wrap any medications)

Are deemed pretty irresistable around here.

(Also, the pet store near me used to carry samples of Natural Balance dog food rolls - I'd cut them up and use them in lieu of hot dogs. She loved them and they were a little less greasy on my hands. Haven't done that in a while, though.)

Also, if you work him before supper rather than after he'll be more likely to be interested in the treats. (Of course, remember to cut back the amount you feed if he's going through a lot of training treats. )

When I fed Delta kibble I would sometimes make her work for her entire supper. Hey, if it requires working for, it's inherently got to be better, right? :p
 

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Get the bunnies!
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While training around home and doing fun stuff with Lottie (like shaping which she LOOOVES and would probably do for nothing!) I just use kibble, but when we are teaching a new behaviour or doing something harder like something agility related I up the reward a little and use little bits of cheese... for any work off the property we use something meaty... either little bits from a big roll of dog food or cut up sausage, she goes nuts for any kind of sausage!

But as said above, you don't HAVE to use food, if your dog is motivated by toys, rough play, getting to run around, ripping up tissues... use anything your dog enjoys- a reward is a reward because your dog finds it rewarding, not because you think it should be rewarding.

Make sure your dog is hungry when you start a training session too!
 
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My friend that trains dobermans uses a pack of cheese and breaks it up. She also uses hotdog with lots of praises. Also little bones break them up so they can last a training class..........:)
 

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Eat Poo and Die
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Wrigley needed special non-pet store treats for training. Liver and chicken so far have both been great. The others were not motivating enough to ignore the other dogs and focus on me.
 

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If I need something really high value, freeze dried green tripe. That said, mine will work happily for plain old kibble.
 
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Definitely, you don't always need to use treats! A short round of tug, or fetch, can be a great reward!

I use all kinds of things for treats.

Hot dog
turkey meatballs
cheese (string cheese or cheddar)
cooked chicken
roast pork
ham
Canine Caviar dog food (I won a bag online; the individual kibbles are a perfect training treat size!)
Cheez-its
Cheerios

Basically, when I'm getting treats ready prior to going on our walk, I look in the fridge and see what we have for leftovers! :lol2:
 

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At the shelter we use a mix of Hotdogs, Cheddar cheese and those "treat-logs" all cut up into pieces and mixed up with a little kibble. if you let it sit in the fridge, together for a little bit, the kibble will soften up and take on the hotdog/cheese smell. Even extremely fearful dogs will generally warm up to it. Its pretty cheap, easy to find the supplies and very high value.
 

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I don't know how the weather is every where else, but it's hideously hot right now, and Niz has a vest on, so cold celery, fruits and carrots make really good treats--they quench his thirst and taste good (to him)!
 

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It took me a long time to realise that Diesel actually doesn't really like hot dogs. He much prefers Edam cheese, boiled liver, chicken, and sometimes little bits of white bread, he loves bread! Also tuna brownie things, but I haven't had time to make them in ages. Just keep trying anything and everything, you will find out what he likes.
 

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jager loves hotdogs , cheese and blue buffalo makes grain free treats blue wilderness wild bites salmon treats of course he is a pig he eats everything he thinks fish oil capsules are a treat and just chows them down.
 

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I like to use treats that I can put into my mouth- chicken dogs, cheese, etc. It helps me maintain eye contact with the dog. I used to use a treat bag attached to my belt but silly dog would want that instead of focusing on me. And if you've ever put salmon rollover in your mouth...well...not something I'd recommend!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks for the tips everyone! I'll experiment and see if I can find something to get him excited. He's not really big on toys either. He'd rather lay in my lap and be loved on :)
 

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Carrots, string cheese and kibble mixed in my training pouch. The carrots and cheese are his favorite but he will still take the kibble and be happy doing commands knowing he might get something better next!

:)
 
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