Does your dog love to play? Does he love it to the point that he isn’t motivated by treats during your training sessions? Or are you looking into training your dogs without food at all?
Yes, it is possible to reward your dogs with something else other than food, and that’s through playtime! Pet toys from reputable stores like Peggasus Pets are effective when training your dog. This won’t only give you the option to reward your dog without treats, but it builds a positive relationship with him, too.
This article will tackle tips on how you can use toys as rewards during training sessions.
Why Train with Toys?
Why train with toys in the first place?
Toys will provide a ton of benefits dog treats can’t. When you use toys, trainers and dog owners transform training and practice sessions into more fun. When you link work and play, it gives dogs an even stronger drive with better confidence and reduced stress. As a result, you get a happier dog that will see work as play, enjoying the sessions more.
The increased motivation and lessened stress will result in faster thinkers and improved performances. While learning can be frustrating, they will have more drive after a game to relieve their spirits.
Furthermore, rewarding via toys is more fulfilling and less distracting compared to treats. Toys and playtime will never run out, nor will it risk weight gain and extra expenses buying treats.
How to Train with Toys?
Now that you know why you should consider training and rewarding dogs with toys and playtime, how will you do it? Here are some helpful tips to follow:
- Stay consistent with the ‘Drop It’ command. Teach them to let go of the toy and drop it on demand, which can have him build more self-control and make it quicker to train with toys. You can practice this command while playing tug-of-war.
- Keep toys made for training and that can’t be played with anytime. When they are not used for rewards from training, keep them away. Doing this will have your dog find those toys exciting and new when they see them, keeping them valuable compared to their other toys.
- When using toys and playtime during training, it means you can’t do a ton of repetitions compared to rewarding with treats. This is fine, but to keep the training session as planned with positive reinforcement, keep playtime short. Do so for only 5 seconds of tugging, or just one toss of their ball or frisbee, then once done, place the toy away while you go back to training.
- It’s best to combine clicker training with toy rewards. Click before you reward your dog with a toy to be clear that the behavior will get the toy reward.
Wrapping It Up
Training with toys is growing even more popular lately, and it’s high time you try it out as well! Utilize these helpful tips and reap the benefits training with toys offers for both you and your dog now.