Do I Need To Use Treats When Training My Dog?
I often get the question…”Do I have to use treats when training my dog?"
The simple answer is no….BUT I will share with you, that food is one of 3 top reinforcers in a dog’s life. For that reason, I do choose to use it and teach others to do so as well.
The hesitation that many have is they feel that food can lead to other problems, which I will be the first to admit, done incorrectly (just like many other tools out there) and things can quickly get bugged up.
What do I mean by bugged up? The reality is, if you bribe your dogs to do a skill, then chances are that you will have to continue to bribe them again and again to get the same results.
But what if I share with you how to use treats, but not as a bribe?
Let’s be honest, treats are an easy way to relay information to most dogs (yes, I know that there are exceptions to those rules), using food is gentle and effective, and that is why we use it.
But that does not mean our dogs should become dependent on treats. We want them to respond to what we have asked, because we asked, not because they expect to receive a good treat each time.
That is why it is important to put them on a variable or random schedule AND use real-life rewards.
Have you ever played a slot machine? You may win after one pull, or it may take 20 or more…you just never know when you’re going to win. But you keep playing because of what could happen. This is a variable or random schedule of reinforcement.
Want to learn how to do it the right way with your dog?
Click the link for access to my cheat sheet, that you can print and get started right away with your dog.
It is as simple as that!
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