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Treats for puppies & training

September 18th, 2006, 08:02 PM
I have two questions:

1. We just adopted Byron, a 3 month old puppy (cross between a black lab and a golden retriever), and are in the process of training him (housetraining, basic commands, etc). He came to us knowing 'sit', and 'come' has been quite easy to teach him. But we haven't a clue on how to teach him to 'lie down'. Help!!

2. Also, we have been using the occasional treat in order to praise good behaviour and when he 'gets it right' during our little training sessions, but we have been told that the treats we are giving him are fattening (Milkbones). We have resorted to giving him only half of one at any given time. Any suggestions on smaller treats that can be used during the training process?


September 18th, 2006, 08:13 PM
I have charlie bean liver treats. They are the size of a piece of kibble and low calorie. I bought them for grooming so I could treat and treat often.

Generally 'mainstream' brands of treats like purina or any of the big companies who advertise on tv a lot are full of junky stuff a lot of us don't give.

Look also for treats that can break into multiple pieces for a lower calorie solution.

September 18th, 2006, 08:28 PM
An inexpensive treat you can make is liver treats, either pan fry or bake and cut into small pieces

For laydown , a nice gentle way to teach without physically pushing him into place, is to sit in a hallway back against one wall and feet on the other and make a bridge with your legs, use the treat to lure him under your legs, if your legs are low enough as he passes underneath it will force him into a laydown position, as soon as he passes far enough underneath that he has to laydown, tell him laydown and reward, soo he will make the connection between the word and the act

September 19th, 2006, 12:56 AM
I always kept a handful of their dog kibble in my pocket for training purposes.

September 19th, 2006, 08:31 AM
I used small cut up hot dogs (chicken ones) or pieces of left over cooked meat for training (high value treats). I also have used the dried liver recipes, they are great too.

For lie down, I did the following:

Ask for a sit; treat
Then take another treat and put it in front of his nose. Slowly move it down to between his paws on the floor. As his nose follows the treat, he'll lie down. Give him the treat when he does, lots of praise.

Good luck!

September 19th, 2006, 09:19 AM
I wish I could remember who it was on these boards who recommended Pounce cat treats for my puppy. They were wonderful. A nice little size, not smelly or messy, so when we went to puppy kindergarten they were very easy to use. Even the instructor there was impressed with them.

September 19th, 2006, 10:14 AM
I use Natural Balance Dog Food Rolls cut into tiny pieces.

September 19th, 2006, 11:29 AM
Our dogs absolute favorite treat is Solid Gold's Hollywood Treats, which are pieces of dehydrated lamb lung. But for training purposes, we like Solid Gold's Lamb Jerky, as they come in squares that can be cut up into four smaller squares. They are soft and just the right size for training, plus the bag comes with a lot in it.

October 2nd, 2006, 02:37 PM
For low cal, I use carrots! My poodle just loves them.
Also, in training school we were told to set aside some of the dog's daily food ration and use that as treats. :)

October 2nd, 2006, 03:29 PM
I used boiled chicken or liver to train Lukka. Also Benny's Liver Treats. All of these things can be cut or broken into very tiny pieces. For example if I had a one inch square cube of chicken, I could easily break that down to about nine or more treats. I also liked the Natural Balance rolls broken up.

October 2nd, 2006, 04:13 PM
I used small cut up hot dogs (chicken ones) or pieces of left over cooked meat for training (high value treats). I also have used the dried liver recipes, they are great too.

are hotdogs good to use? my mom suggested it and I went ahead and bought a pack chicken hotdog. He lOVES Them but I'm finding that he's more interested in licking my fingers than doing anything else...

October 2nd, 2006, 04:29 PM
I find the best training treats are the Natual Balance roll or Rollover (I prefer to use the chicken one) or the dried liver treats. They are much better and the dogs love them.

October 2nd, 2006, 05:39 PM
We've used hot dogs, nat. balance roll, broken up pieces of dog biscuit, cheese, etc. If you are planning on doing a 10 - 15 min training session a day, cut your treats up to no bigger than 1/4 the size of your dogs eye. That way you can give a lot of treats (so thinks your pup!!) without giving a lot of treats and risking an upset belly.

October 15th, 2006, 09:23 AM
I also use Benny's Liver treats but was told not to give too many of those. I break the larger pcs. into very tiny bits for our 3 mth. old Havanese, Ricky.

I also found AKC biscuits for small dogs - recommend 1 biscuit/day, but it can be broken into tiny bits too. Also, the overcooked edges of a roast beef and turkey we had for dinner. He just LOVES them and they're not fatty or filled with preservatives.

I have also read that using some of the pup's meal rations as treats throughout the day will curb the extra calories.

Someone sugg'd teaching what the dog already does naturally and I've found this to be the easiest way to teach commands. When he learned to jump, we praised like crazy and only said one word when he'd do it .. "jump". Same with "come". I'd walk backwards from him and once he started runinng towards me, I said "come", pointed one finger to the ground and nothing else. He will now "come" about 90% of the time. Yep... treats are what worked the best, but we've now replaced some of the treats with play, rubdowns, and loads of verbal praise.

Good luck! :dog: