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Tips from Matty
Stealing Food

Even a good dog can make a disaster out of a dinner party. Don't get caught with your glass raised toasting, "Here's to good company, good wine, and...good grief!"

An untrained dog cannot be trusted around available food.

Why Dogs Steal Food
  • Hunger - When a dog is hungry, he will eat available food. Make sure that he is getting regularly scheduled, nutritionally balanced meals.

  • Cooking - The scent of food cooking teases a dog and sets his instincts in gear.

  • Table feeding and leftovers - When a dog is fed from the table or offered leftovers from his owner's plate, he is encouraged to do it again and again, whenever he can.

  • Availability - If you leave food out, and within reach, you must assume that your dog will take it.

Proper Training Technique
Establish a regular feeding schedule and location for your dog's meals and do not allow him to eat anywhere else.

To keep the dog away from your plate and focused on his, make sure you give him a proper diet. Consult a veterinarian to determine your dog's proper diet based on his height, weight, activity, and health.

Do not get into the habit of feeding your dog from the table. When you sit down for your meal, remove him from the room.

Set up a situation in which your dog (on a leash) is likely to steal food. As he takes the bait, offer a corrective jerk immediately and firmly tell him no! Once you have used the corrective jerk to your satisfaction, place shake cans a locations where stealing is likely to take place. Rattle a shake can when your dog attempts to take food and tell him no. Use a gentle tone with a shy dog and a firmer tone with a stubborn dog. Once the correction is made, offer praise to your dog for obeying.


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