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From: callie (
Subject:         high value treats (a small grin)
Date: September 28, 2008 at 8:45 am PST

In Reply to: got a problem with the dogs posted by Saysfaa on September 27, 2008 at 6:44 pm:

YOU are a higher value "treat" than the treats.

Suggestions (likely you'll have to do all of them)

1. There is a time to be just 'you' and a time to be the 'stern you'. No nonsense, do what you're told... Stand stiff and un-yielding, feel slightly apart, NO NONSENSE attitude. Fists on hips if need be. Every bone in your body ramrod stiff. Remember dogs read body language from each other -- it's how they communicate. So tell them with your body "don't mess with me - no time for play MOVE IT!"

2. Don't throw the treat in FIRST -- then you've already rewarded them for being balky and they don't have to go IN **now** to get it cos it's already there, so they can take their time!!

3. The first one is the charm -- you gotta get one dog IN so you can then throw the treat in AFTER (reward FOR going in). They catch on pretty quick that the treat's not forthcoming until they go in expeditiously. And sometimes, if one is particularly balky -- they don't get it AT ALL.

4. You've got to upgrade your treats. You may have to vary them. "high value treat"

This is a running joke here -- when we got Tink over 4th of July, the morning of the 5th before we left Texas to come back to Florida David and I gave a pug a bath in a motel sink!

Yahhhh .... *sheesh* NOT easy.

Before we left Orlando, I wanted to stop at Publix and get some Puffins. They're cereal (corn puffs actually but with a touch of cinnamon). My dogs will do ANY thing for them. They are, for my crew, the ULTIMATE in treat-dom ... dry, go nicely in pockets, etc. Come in "original" (the favorite actually), cinnamon and peanut butter.

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooo husband declared we couldn't take those on the plane "They DO have grocery stores in Texas you know!!" (but but but ... prolly not Puffins!)

As I figgered, the day of the 4th was no day to get what I wanted, and husband came back from Wal-Mart with CHEERIOS.

So ... ok. She thot Cheerios were ... um ... ok and took them from my hand. No problem.

BUT ... during a BATH??? In a motel sink??? Let's just say I WORE them!!

I saw her lips move as she said "LADY, THOSE ARE ***NOT*** HIGH VALUE TREATS!!! I'M A PUPPY NOT A MORON!!!"

or words to that effect.

Moral of story -- if you're asking them to do something difficult, painful, scarey -- the treat's gotta outweigh the effort. Plain milkbone probably won't cut it. These dogs know someone who "cares" when they see them, and if they go in their kennel that ends their time with you.

5. That brings me to my last point -- you've gotta have that reward in hand so as soon as their butt clears the door, you skid the treat in so you treat *before* the door really shuts.


You linger then to "good BOY!" and ofter loving/good/positive words AFTER they've gone in. So that the last thing isn't the door clanging shut.

You want them to like/respect you -- so that does mean you have to stand off just a bit when it's time to go back IN, but then you can revert to the caring guardian AFTER they do as you ask.

Make sense?

And you can tell them Aunt Callie says "these AREn't Just Cheerios!"

Also -- I use Baby "Gerber Graduates" -- look in the grocery store baby aisle -- they are bits of freeze dried apple, banana, strawberry, and the favorite are freeze dried yogurt drops!! SWEET. And they come in nice little ziplock bags you can keep in your desk.

I got onto Puffins because they're wheat-free and Billy has to be wheat-free. In fact, at my house they are CALLED "Wheet freeeez" LOL

Try various cereals (I'd bet Captain Crunch would be a hit). Something 'different' that only you have on you.

String cheese is easy to pull off in your pocket and is a mega treat with most dogs.

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