Must you sneak into the kitchen in the hope of avoiding your dog when you want a snack? The sound of the potato chip bag or the smallest kitchen sound can have them running to you with hope and a pleading expression in their eyes. Does your dog work every angle in order to get food from you?
If you have a begging dog, it can be frustrating. We have simple, effective tools you can use to teach your dog not to beg. The team at Union Lake Pet Services is here to help!
The Easy Way to Teach Your Dog Not to Beg
At first, the “beg face” is cute, right? There’s something adorable about that pout when a pet wants a snack from the dinner plate. Over time, this behavior can get old, especially when dinner guests are over. Begging sets your pet up for obesity and pancreatitis (a serious inflammation of the pancreas). Being fed food from the table can also present poisoning emergencies if they eat something toxic.
So, how do you teach your pet not to beg? Here are 6 tools that will help:
- Don’t reward the behavior – The common sense answer to this question is to stop giving your pet food when they beg. Use treats for training purposes as instructed by our training team, but don’t give food from the table or reward unwanted behavior (such as begging) with treats. Offer an enrichment toy or box as a distraction during meal times.
- Teach your pet the “find your spot” command – If your dog is trained to respond to important commands, like “stay” or “come here,” you probably know how valuable commands are. To keep your pet from begging, teach them the “find your spot” or “spot” command. Use a favorite bed, spot in the living room, or crate (if crate trained) as the place you want your pet to go when the family is eating.
- Use distractions – Does your dog love games or toys? How about a walk to the park? One way you can use distractions is to have another member of the family enjoy a game with your pet while you are cooking and offer them a toy or chew bone while everyone eats. Having another “favorite thing” can be helpful in distracting your pet while you eat.
- Ask others not to feed your pet – A few “treats” here and a few “snacks” there can encourage your pet to beg when a family member or friend comes over. Ask others not to reward your pet with people food, but rather use snuggles, pets, and attention as a reward for their favorite four-legged.
- Be consistent – Consistency is everything when it comes to training a pet. If you bend the rules a few times, this undermines what you are trying to accomplish. Consistency with positive rewards, such as playtime or verbal praise, are the keys to a well-behaved doggo.
- Make your pet work for it – If you want to reward your pet with safe, healthy snacks, make them work for it. Grab a few baby carrots, cubed cheese, or whatever they like, and take it with you during your training sessions or walks. Don’t feed them while at the table or during meal prep. Give them ways they can earn their snacks outside of the kitchen.
We hope these simple tools help you achieve your goals with your dog. Begging can be an annoying habit, we know, but by using these modes of redirection, you can teach your pet good table manners. If you want more information about how to teach your dog not to beg or any other pet-related questions, please call us.