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2 exercises to make the dog stop eating things

Here are two exercises you can practice to help your dog understand that not everything that is presented or available is their business. The exercises are easy to do and with a little practice, the dog's learning will transfer to more things than treats, which we will be working on right now. Be patient and keep developing your training to see results in more places in the dog's life.

Exercise 1

We're going to start by practicing your dog's impulse control. Impulse control is about your dog being able to control himself and not be too tempted to what he wants or wants to get at. Some individuals are very good at this and others need more training. Therefore, it is good to teach them this early to develop their restraint skills.

Do this

Take some treats in your hand and place them on the floor in front of the dog. Cover the candy pile with your hand and make sure your dog can't reach the candy. Your dog may initially try to take the treat by squeezing, licking and pushing your hand away with his nose. Keep your hand there to prevent your dog from getting to it. If this becomes difficult for your dog and he just keeps trying to get to the treat, you can instead put the treat on a table and cover it with your hand to gradually get down to the same level as your dog.

Deliver a treat first when your dog somehow chooses to distance himself from the treat. This could be that the dog shifts its weight backwards, or simply does not try to take the treat from your hand. Continue doing this until your dog has had the entire treat.

The goal of this exercise is that you don't have to hold your hand over the candy pile, but can put pieces of candy on the floor that your dog doesn't reach out and take. But make this progressively more difficult for your dog. This is because some individuals can be very negatively affected by you putting your hand over the treat when they try to take it. This is often linked to slightly more cautious dogs with lower self-confidence. So cover the treat with your hand at all times instead of moving your hand back and forth over the treat when the dog tries to steal. Instead, remove your hand quickly and reward when the dog chooses not to poach for the treat and your dog is less likely to lose confidence in this exercise.

Exercise 2

In combination with teaching your dog to restrain and control his impulses, it is important for the dog to learn that it pays to choose temptation. The dog will receive many rewards for simply ignoring the temptation that is presented.

Do this

Put out something that often tempts your dog. It could be a toy, the children's Lego, socks or the shoes that tempt in the hallway. Throw out a treat on the floor near the temptation and be prepared with a bunch of treats in your hand that preferably have a higher value than the treat on the floor. When your dog has eaten the treat on the floor and comes back to you, it will get a bunch of treats at your place.

What you are doing then is rewarding your dog for simply choosing away what is tempting. Then it's good to deliver more treats at your place and preferably treats that have a high value to your dog.

Tip! If you are not sure that your dog will choose to come back to you, you can put a leash and harness on your dog so that you can easily stop it if it is heading towards temptation. Rather, make it easier for your dog and don't use any temptation at first to teach it that it pays to come back to you.

Use this type of reward throughout your dog's life. Anything that your dog chooses not to do is an opportunity for you to reward desired behaviour in you. This applies both on walks and indoors.

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