Feeding your dog out of a bowl is a wasted training opportunity. It is also very boring for the dog, think about it…. Before dogs were domesticated animals, they hunted, foraged, and scavenged for food. In other words they worked for their food. Why would you feed your dog out of the bowl when you could train, interact, and play games with them at the same time as feeding them their main meal? Worried about giving your dog too many treats? Well, Train with their main meal/kibble, instead of treats.
Search: You can hide little piles of food around your living room as your dog watches and do a “SEARCH” exercise. Have someone hold your dog or have your dog crate in the middle of the floor and let them see you hide the little piles of food around, they will get so excited. Open the crate and say “Search”
Kong: You can put the food in a food puzzle or a Kong (Recipes on Kongcompany.com) Being the owner of a successful dog training company, I can tell you I am always looking for ways to better the relationship between my clients and their dogs. This one exercise is a relationship changer. You will notice better behavior within 2 weeks if you do this consistently.
Food Puzzles: are a great way to feed your dog their main meal as well. Throw that food bowl away, throw that slow feeder food bowl AWAY!!
Treat in a towel: This one is pretty simple and my dog loves it! You can start with a towel and work up to a comforter. Start with a hand towel on the floor laid open all the way. Let your dog see you put a tasty treat in the middle of the towel (crate your dog or have someone hold him). Next, fold the towel corners one at a time over the treat. Fold it until you have a small square and then go to your dog, say “Search” and let him go.