Hand Feeding Your Canine Their Every day Meals is the Canine Coaching Device You are Lacking

Hand feeding your canine their each day meals is likely one of the strongest instruments to coach your canine new expertise. As well as, you’ll construct motivation, develop a stronger bond, and enhance their habits. I exploit it to show canines new behaviors in all of my coaching.

The rationale hand feeding your canine is so highly effective is since you grow to be the bearer of one among their most vital life requirements–meals.

Canine want meals to outlive, and subsequently, they are going to be extra motivated to carry out and study when they’re hungry.

If you feed your canine from a bowl twice a day, then they grow to be much less motivated to work. Not solely are they full, however additionally they know that you simply’ll simply ship one other bowl of meals later that day.

Think about when you confirmed as much as work day by day and there was a test ready for you in your desk.

Would you then work for eight hours? 

Most likely not, as a result of there’s no motivation. You’ve already been paid, and you already know there’s going to be a test ready for you the following morning, so what’s the purpose?

Feeding your canine from the bowl is a wasted coaching alternative! Hand feeding is fingers down the probably the greatest methods to develop an obedient, go anyplace, do something canine.

Relying only on treats for dog training can result in an unmotivated dog and can lead to obesity. This is why hand feeding rules!

Utilizing Treats vs Hand Feeding Meals for Canine Coaching

Many canine house owners and trainers use treats for canine coaching. Nonetheless, treats are like dessert. 

In contrast to meals, canines don’t want treats to outlive.

Utilizing treats for coaching, on high of already feeding your canine their each day meals poses a number of points:

Your canine isn’t hungry. As I’ve talked about earlier, when you present your canine with their each day meals served in a bowl twice a day, they received’t have any motivation to work for extra meals. They’re full.

Consequently, the consequence of not working is to take away the meals and check out once more later. Nonetheless, if the meals has no that means, then the punishment is pointless.

Nonetheless, once they’re hungry, you guess they’ll be motivated and engaged to earn their meals.

Treats are basically dessert. Don’t get me mistaken, I really like me some dessert, however I don’t love consuming 45 cookies in a row. It makes me really feel gross and ultimately, I don’t need anymore.

Treats can contribute to weight problems. In the event you’re not accounting for the quantity of treats your canine eats along with their each day meal, then the additional energy may very well be resulting in weight acquire. Based on the Affiliation for Pet Weight problems Prevention, 56% of canines within the US are chubby or overweight

Weight problems is a severe and more and more widespread drawback within the pet world and results in a variety of preventable well being points.

Hand Feed Your Canine for Coaching

Hand feeding is sort of easy, actually!

As an alternative of feeding your canine their each day quantity of meals in a bowl, add it to your deal with pouch to make use of throughout your coaching periods.

Earlier than you begin coaching instructions, it’s essential to first train your canine marker phrases. This lays the muse for coaching and builds engagement with you because the handler.

In case your canine doesn’t but know the command by identify, then they’re nonetheless within the studying section. Set them up for achievement by rewarding for effort and engagement as you progress towards the brand new talent.

Use your canine’s each day quantity of meals to coach

Coaching periods can occur all through the day, a number of occasions a day. They don’t have to happen throughout your canine’s typical feeding time.

The good thing about feeding your canine all through the day is that they don’t grow to be accustomed to consuming at particular occasions after which they don’t demand meals at sure occasions.

Coaching periods can final anyplace from one minute to twenty minutes. In the event you’re pressed for time, put the meals in your canine’s bowl and make them work for it (apart from simply sitting and ready), then reward them with a jackpot.

In any other case, spend anyplace from 5 to twenty minutes engaged on primary obedience expertise like place, free leash strolling, or establishing marker phrases.

Word: You don’t must feed one piece of meals at a time. In reality, it’s useful to fluctuate the quantity of meals you give your canine as a result of it leaves them guessing whether or not the following command will end in extra meals! 

My Canine Isn’t Meals Motivated!

This can be true proper now, nonetheless, all canines are meals motivated.


As a result of they want meals to outlive. They have to have meals motivation.

In case your canine doesn’t present curiosity in working for his or her meals, then cease the coaching session, crate your canine, and check out once more in a number of hours. It’s alright to drastically cut back the quantity of meals your canine eats at first with a purpose to construct that meals drive.

It’s vital to not collapse and provides your canine their meals from the bowl in the event that they haven’t eaten after a number of meals.

Now, I’m not saying that you need to starve your canine with a purpose to construct meals motivation, nonetheless, I’m saying that with a purpose to construct meals motivation, then a canine would possibly select to go with out meals for a time period.

Let me say that once more. A canine would possibly select to go with out meals

In the event you provide meals via coaching they usually don’t need to work, then that’s on them. Some canines will go 3-5 days with out meals. That’s okay.

If they don’t need to work, then we take the meals away. That’s the consequence of not working and the unfavourable punishment that pairs with optimistic reinforcement coaching, one thing many +R trainers don’t speak about.

If a canine doesn’t need to work, then the one option to construct motivation to work is to create starvation by eradicating the meals. That is unfavourable reinforcement that pairs with utilizing meals for coaching.

After we provide our canines meals delivered to them on a literal silver platter twice a day, then what motivation have they got to work for his or her meals?

With out motivation, then all you’ve left to coach with is pressure, and that’s not enjoyable or ideally suited.

Existential Feeding and Motivation

Based on humanistic psychologist Abraham Maslow, all people are motivated to meet primary physiological wants earlier than transferring on to extra superior wants. He launched his idea of a hierarchy of wants in 1943.

His idea defined that people are born with a need to be self-actualized. That’s that they need to serve a function and search private growth. With a purpose to obtain self-actualization, nonetheless, individuals are motivated to meet primary wants first. He created a pyramid demonstrating the hierarchy of wants that has grow to be one of many best-known theories of motivation.

The five-tiered pyramid is split into deficiency wants and development wants. 

Deficiency wants are physiological survival wants and are categorized as: organic, security and safety, and social wants.

Organic survival wants are: meals, water, shelter, air/respiratory, and sleep.

Security and safety wants embrace: bodily and psychological well being, employment, regulation and order, freedom from worry.

Social wants are: household relationships, friendships, romantic relationships, and group teams

Progress wants are these which assist a person understand their full potential via inventive and mental means.

Progress wants are these associated to self-worth, and embrace confidence, achievement, and respect of others. 

On the high of the pyramid are self-actualization wants, which must do with the conclusion of  full potential in inventive and private growth endeavors.

What does Maslow’s Hierarchy of Wants have something to do with canine coaching?


Based on Maslow, when deficiency wants go unmet, individuals are motivated to meet these wants as a result of they need to survive.

The longer they go with out these wants, the extra motivated they’re to meet them.

Hand Feed Your Canine with out Getting Bitten

It is a fairly widespread prevalence I see in a number of canines and it will probably actually be annoying and painful!

When you have an enthusiastic eater in your fingers, merely maintain the meals in a fist in your hand and slowly open your fist as soon as your canine stops being so mouthy. Then, you possibly can slowly allow them to lick the meals out of your hand.

Chorus from delivering the deal with pinched between your thumb and forefinger. That’s simply asking to get bitten!

As an alternative, tuck the meals into the pocket of your thumb when it’s pressed towards your hand, let your canine nostril it out of that house.

I Feed My Canine Uncooked, Can I Nonetheless Hand Feed?

Completely! I feed my canine uncooked and nonetheless hand feed him a number of his meals. 

There are a few methods to do that. One is extra messy and requires a bit extra planning, the opposite is maybe costlier.

The primary choice is to feed your canine their common uncooked meals and practice the place you already know the meals received’t grow to be heat. 

To do that, you’ll need a number of equipment to guard your fingers and to retailer the meals:

Gloves – Nitrile gloves are perfect for hand feeding uncooked (I even put on them with consumer canines who eat kibble as a result of canine saliva combined with kibble is gross!). For a extra sustainable choice, look into reusable silicone gloves.

Silicone Deal with Pouch – Silicone is nice as a result of it will probably pop into the dishwasher. I’d suggest both this one from Dexas or, use your common deal with pouch and simply use a silicone zip high bag to retailer the meals, like these from Stasher.

Squeeze tube – In the event you desire to depart your fingers out of the equation all collectively, you would use a reusable squeeze tube. I exploit these for working and GoToobs for journey and tenting.

The second choice is to make use of freeze-dried or air-dried meals, which is what I do. I feed Sitka one meal that’s his refrigerated uncooked, and his coaching meal is air-dried.

I personally use Max Meat from Solely Pure Pet. I’ve discovered that it’s the most inexpensive choice, particularly when you do auto supply. Freeze-dried and air-dried uncooked might be pricier than refrigerated uncooked, so simply play with completely different choices when you’re dedicated to uncooked!

Different manufacturers I’d suggest embrace:

As you possibly can see, hand feeding your canine their meals via coaching periods has a ton of advantages! It’s enjoyable, straightforward, and doesn’t take far more time than feeding them from a bowl, really.

Have you ever began handy feed your canine their meals? How has their engagement and motivation modified in consequence?