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Looking for the best reward?

22.02.2023 18:56

Modern dog training revolves around rewards. Many a dog owner is struggling to find the best one. Do you want to know? There is no universal best reward. It will be different for every dog. What's more, for most dogs this best reward will change often. He or she will tire of even the best treat, best game or other great reward after a while.

Therefore, if I were to recommend a reward, I would say, "Be creative." Notice what your dog likes, what might please him. For treats, don't just rely on the commercially produced ones. Try cooked meats, offal, canned food mixed with kibble, hard cheese... You don't have to just give them to your dog either. You can toss them or throw them on the ground so that he has to look for them. You can clasp them in the palm of your hand and let the dog chase them for a few seconds, as if he were chasing a mouse.

With toys, sometimes it's even harder. First you have to get the dog used to playing outside together. This is not a problem with puppies, but during the puppy's growing years many owners stop playing outside with their dog and later it is very difficult to reward them with a toy. But it's just a matter of training.

There is a plethora of toys on the market today and even here it is true that every dog appreciates something different. Most people, however, appreciate long ropes, with which they can handle tug-of-war without unnecessary bending. You can also get them in a variety of designs, including an added toy with a squeaker or braided rabbit skin. But there's also a great choice in throwing toys and something for every dog.

But of course these are not the only rewards that can be used. Many dogs will also appreciate some really warm, heartfelt praise or cuddles. Be careful though, it must not be too much. You need to make the dog genuinely happy.

Most dogs will also appreciate your activity. Run around with your dog, hide behind a tree, give him a chance to perform a favourite trick. You can also find rewards around you. Try showing your dog a frog. (Just don't let him hurt it.) This will get most dogs excited. Let him jump into the pond or poke mice. Let him loose for a while as a reward, or let him run after a canine friend. And above all, be creative! Look, notice, try. And take turns. For many dogs, it's not so much what reward you use, but whether you can surprise them.

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