Question of the week: How do I stop my dog from begging?

Dog begging for foodWhen you have a drooling dog at your knee during dinner time, you are witnessing an annoying, but  learned behavior. Begging for food is not something that dogs do naturally. It quickly becomes tiresome to have a dog whining and pleading for a bite of your food. Additionally, you may soon be dealing with health issues that occur as a result of overfeeding your dog.

Usually it begins with a well-meaning member of the family generously sharing a morsel of people food. Smart beings that they are, dogs quickly learn that the dinner table provides another dining option.

Canines respond well to routine. When you sit for your meals, either crate your dog or have them stay in a different room. If the dog is already accustomed to getting extra “treats,” this is going to require persistence and tough love on your part. It may seem a battle of wills, but it is imperative for both you and your dog that you stand your ground despite the sad looks and whimpering. It may be helpful to synch up your meal times with your dogs when possible, thereby providing a distraction from your food.

Guests at your house need to be aware that you have a no tolerance policy when it comes to giving the dog human treats. It is better not to run the risk of undoing all the hard work you have done in training your dog.

Always remember you are not doing your canine a favor by sharing your food with him or her. We see countless cases of dogs suffering ill effects from eating what they shouldn’t (especially around the holiday season).

If you are dealing with these issues and would like to know more, don’t hesitate to call us at the clinic. Our number is 510-549-1252.