Giving your dog positive reinforcement is necessary – and one of the best rewards is a yummy treat. We all know that one of the most simple and common ways to train a dog is through giving them treats when they obey your commands. Many owners also are in the habit of giving pets a treat after they go potty, and sometimes we give treats simply to show our pets how much we love them.
However, just like with us humans, there is a risk of over-indulging.
Be careful about the quantity and timing of your treat-giving. Giving your pet too many treats or feeding treats too close before or after meals may cause them to overeat. They may also reject their nutritionally balanced food for those tastier indulgences. Always remember, treats are meant as an occasional food item and not a primary meal.
When buying your dog treats, be sure to look at the ingredients. If there are words you don’t recognize or can’t pronounce, it might not be the best treat for your dog. One good option is pure meat freeze-dried treats because they are lean, high in protein, and low in fat and carbs.
If your dog has a weight issue, keep it simple and give him green beans or sweet potato as a treat.
You can also make your dog work for his treat a bit more by placing it in a treat-dispensing toy. The dog has to bat the dispenser around and problem-solve in order to get the treats.
As always, don’t hesitate to reach out to your local pet store if you have questions on this or any pet-related topic.