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Q & A No. 5, But They’re Not Treat Motivated!

Hello again. This time I decided to answer a question that I've gotten from a lot of new, and newer, dog owners. “But my dog isn't treat motivated. How do I get them to do what I’m asking if they’re not into treats?”

This is actually a lot easier than you’d think. But first, you have to ask yourself what a “treat” is to the dog. It’s motivation, something special, a reward. A treat is what your dog gets when they do something you’ve asked. This is why so many dogs who don’t have to do anything for a treat are so often unruly when the treats aren’t available. If your dog has to earn that treat, then they know that doing what you've asked of them will get them what they want from you. Now, is “motivation, something special, a reward” always something eatable? Short answer, no. A treat is just something special that’s not readily available all the time.

So, to answer the original question, it’s all about your dog’s definition of what a treat is for them. Find out what your dog’s treat is and you have your answer. Are they always trying to get your attention? Do they really like that squeaker? Ok, so they can have special attention when they do what they’re being told to do. Does your dog want to carry their chew toy around the house? They can have their chew toy when they sit down and stay seated. As with humans, it’s all about benefit and association.


Remember, if there’s anything you’re curious about, comment here or on my social media and I’ll be happy to take a look. Thanks again for reading and have a barking good day, week, year… just keep those tails wagging!

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