|Rocco keeps his eye on the prize -- a tasty Vita Bone biscuit!|
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Ever since Rocco was a young pup, we've used positive reinforcement training to help turn him into the fine young dog and athlete he is today!
Positive reinforcement is about rewarding your pup when they perform a behavior you want them to do, rather than punishing them for an unwanted behavior. Imagine if all you heard was no-no-no all day. It would probably put you in a bad mood (at a minimum) and likely make you mad at the world!
The same thing goes for your pup. Rewarding your pup for a desired behavior goes a long way in increasing the bond and trust between you and your dog and it encourages your dog to exhibit that good behavior again and again.
How to train with positive reinforcement
We've trained everything from tricks and agility to good manners using positive reinforcement and we like using rewards like USA-made Vita Bone treats to reward for a job well done!
Here are some of our favorite and most useful behaviors we've trained using positive reinforcement.
- Instead of jumping at kitchen counters, give your pup an acceptable alternative behavior. Rocco is trained to go to his place -- a comfy bed in the corner of the kitchen -- where he can safely observe all the kitchen activity. He gets lots of treats and praise for going to his place.
- Train a similar behavior for pups who jump on guests at the front door. When the doorbell rings, reward your pet for lying calmly on a cushion near the front door. Practice with a friend -- ringing the doorbell and opening the door -- before real guests come to call!
- Does your dog bark or lunge at dogs walking by? Keep your dog's eyes on you by holding a tasty treat and saying "watch me". Reward their attention on you. You can add "look at that", pointing to the cause of their barking and then reward a quick head turn back to you.
|Rocco and his friend Sophie couldn't resist the box of Vita Bones that arrived at our door, dragging the box into the living room and trying to open it while I wasn't looking! Who do you think "did it"!|
Even good dogs get into mischief! But who could resist a box full of Vita Bones Biscuits and Chewys! Tip: Use a Vita Bone treat to get your pups to focus on you while taking photos.
More about Vita Bone and how to win some!
Rocco loves them both... a LOT! It's easy to break up both the biscuits and the chewys into smaller Rocco-sized training pieces so we've used them recently as rewards at an agility trial and look what happened....!
|Rocco earned LOTS of ribbons for qualifying runs at last weekend's USDAA agility trial|
To find Vita Bone near you,use the Vita Bone store locator and then get some coupons for both Vita Bone Biscuits and Chewy Treats. They're currently distributed mostly out west and in the midwest, but I hear they're in the process of expanding their distribution. If you can't wait to try them, you can order now on Amazon and also enter our giveaway below!
Enter via the Giveaway widget below for a chance to win a Vita Bone prize pack.
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