You like snacks and treats, well, so does your dog. There are many options available for your dog to have treats, rewards and chews. There are a variety of treats that can give your dog fresh breath, help his gums and provide needed vitamins and minerals. Rewards can help you train your dog and condition him to maintain good, desirable behavior.
Chews, though, can be a puppy parent’s answer to a prayer. With so many available, though, it is difficult to choose which of each you should offer. The first thing you want to do is make certain that your dog actually likes the treats and rewards. If he won’t chew the rawhide you bought him or puts his nose up at the liver treats, then you are spinning your wheels and wasting money.
Many pet stores have samples and will allow you to let your pet sample the treats before you buy them.
Treats: Tasty and Healthy
Treats are a nice dessert or snack when you just want to give your dog a little something he will enjoy. There are many different types of treats. Some offer a vitamin or mineral boost while others will give the dog fresh breath. Some treats just taste good and the dog likes them and that is a good enough reason to get them.
You can even find recipes to make your own dog treats. One thing you do not want to give your dog, even as a treat, is chocolate. This can be very harmful to your dog’s health. Sugar is another thing that you don’t want your dog indulging in too much. It simply is not healthy.
Rewards: Good Boy!
Some people believe in giving rewards to their dogs when they exhibit good behavior or when they do a trick correctly. Other people do not believe in giving rewards. If, however, you believe in giving rewards, again, it is vital to make sure that your dog actually likes the rewards.
Try different textures as well as different tastes. You may even want to mix things up a bit and offer a crunchy treat some times and a chewy treat other times. Crunchy treats are good for the dog’s teeth and gums so while you are rewarding him, you are promoting good dental health for him. You can kill two birds with one stone.
Chews: Save Your Furniture and Shoes!
Face it, just about every dog, at the very least, goes though a period where he chews. Some dogs only chew when they are puppies, but other dogs chew their whole lives. It seems that everyone has a different opinion why a dog chews from teething pain to separation anxiety, but the only one who really knows is your dog.
If chewing is a problem and you are down to your last pair of unchewed shoes, you may want to offer the dog something else to gnaw.
Bully sticks are very popular and generally last, as do some rawhide and hooves (although after a while they start to smell). The trick to breaking your pup from chewing is to actually catch him in the act of chewing and have plenty of “allowed” chews on hand. Each time you catch him chewing something, take it from him and offer him an “allowed” chew, then praise.
If you fuss at him for chewing your things, then you are not teaching him not to chew your stuff, you are just teaching him to chew it behind your back.
Bully sticks are probably the most affordable (and least gross after they have been chewed because there is no nasty, slimy, soft parts like on rawhide) and you can find them at most pet supply stores. Just make sure that whatever treat, reward and chew you give to your dog is healthy and safe.