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Taking Treats Nicely


Guest BeakerBoy
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Guest BeakerBoy

Beaker really loves his treats-he knows exactly what's going to happen when one of us opens the pantry door! I want to work with him on taking the treat nicely as opposed to just gobbling it out of my hand, but I'm not sure how to do it. He does a good job of laying down on command for his treats, but I'm not sure what to do for the next step to get him to take it gently. Does anyone have any tricks or thoughts on how to do this? I don't worry about him biting us or anything-I just want him to be able to take his treats nicely. :)

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With treats like dog bacon, or longer cookies, I place the treat in the palm of my hand, and wrap my fingers around it (like making a fist but with your thumb sticking out). Between your thumb and forefinger you let a bit of the treat out, and then when the dog pulls (gently!) it you slowly let more treat out.

 

Edit to add: and praise with "good dog" so they know that the idea is to take it gently.

Another edit to add: Also, make sure the dog is in a calm state before offering treat. Having him all riled up for a cookie just makes things more danerous for your fingers.

Edited by Shana
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Yep, hold it so they only get a bit at a time, praising them while you do it. Also, make sure you're holding the treat at their head level and pretty close, so they're not having to reach for it, or feel that they have to grab it.

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Guest Swifthounds

In addition to the above, since you store treats in the closet and simply going to the closet starts the excitement, try initially having the treats somewhere else. Once he has perfected treat taking in a calm environment, you can go back to using the closet. When you approach the closet ask him to sit and wait for him to settle before you open the closet (sometimes this takes a while), then proceed. Soon instead of seeing you go to the closet and thinking "TREATTREATTREAT!GULP!YUM!" he'll be thinking about being calm and patient to "Earn" the treat - safer for both of you.

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When we first adopted Teddy 3 years ago, I would count my fingers after he took a treat from my hand. A lot of GH are like that when they first get home. Over time, Teddy has mellowed out enough, he knows he is going to get a cookie, get fed, etc. Now, my 2 year old granddaughter is able to give him cookies- he is that gentle.

 

Beaker won't always be like this.

 

 

ROBIN ~ Mom to: Beau Think It Aint, Chloe JC Allthewayhome, Teddy ICU Drunk Sailor, Elsie N Fracine , Ollie RG's Travertine, Ponch A's Jupiter~ Yoshi, Zoobie & Belle, the kitties.

Waiting at the bridge Angel Polli Bohemian Ocean , Rocky, Blue,Sasha & Zoobie & Bobbi

Greyhound Angels Adoption (GAA) The Lexus Project

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I use the word "easy" & Trolley seems to understand. She takes treats very gently from my hand. I also use that word when we are rough-house playing & she gets too enthusiastic. :lol

Carol-Glendale, AZ

Trolley (Figsiza Trollyn)

Nevada 1992-2008...always in my heart

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Toni is a grab-and-gobbler too. I taught her the "watch me" command and use it every time she gets a treat. It calms and focuses her. Then I hold the treat in my fist (as described above) and she only gets it when she takes it gently. It's worked really well with her and she's much better now. I also separate her from the other three as part of her trouble was she wanted ALL the treats and actually bit Copper over a microscopic piece.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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I use the same method. Treat in closed fist, let him smell it and gradually work his nose in to get it. Most dogs get the idea really quickly. Very few will bite a closed fist - they understand the treat is inside it and they have no interest in tearing you to shreds, it's just impatience that makes them snatch.

 

Try offering the treat in your closed fist at his nose level and let him sniff at it. Most will lick at the fist a little bit and then push at it with their nose, trying to wiggle your fingers apart. As long as he's being gentle, gradually allow your hand to be opened and let him have the treat (tell him good boy, of course, while he IS being good). If at any point you feel teeth, yelp like a puppy and pull your hand away, then start at square one.

 

Took all of mine less than two days till I could hold the treat out to them in my fingers and have them take it gently every time.

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest BeakerBoy

So I've been doing this for a couple of days with Beaker now and it seems like it's starting to work. Just tonight, I broke his treat into a few pieces and had him sniff the pieces out of my closed fist one at a time. He did a lot of sniffing and licking at my fist and as I opened my fist, he took the treat a lot more gently than he did before. I'm still going to do this with him to make sure he really gets it, but it's positive progress so far. :)

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I volunteer at the local animal shelter and we use the same method to teach the adoptable dogs how to nicely take a treat. It already sounds like he's getting the hang of it so keep it up.

Alicia and Foster Yoshi ( pit bull) 

Always in my heart: WV's Milky Way 6/25/2000- 4/22/2013, Hank ( St Bernard/Boxer) ???? - 10/3/2017 and Sweet Pea (English bulldog)  2004 - 6/19/2019

www.etsy.com/your/shops/MuttStuffnc

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