Sit. Lay down. Roll over. Paw. Who’s a good girl? (Or, of course, boy!) These are common phrases uttered by dog owners around the world before their dogs favorite time of the day—treat time. While it’s common for dog owners to want to shower their dog with treats to keep them happy, you’ll want to make sure that you're choosing the best option for your pet. There’s a lot to consider when it comes to dog treats — does your dog like the treats, have any allergies or health conditions, and do the treats you choose support overall health needs of your pet? The dog treat market can be a bit difficult to navigate, so we’ve done the navigating for you.
Pureed pumpkin (with no added sugar) is one of my favorite ingredients to use in dog treats. It’s nutritious for dogs — it’s high in fiber, low in fat, and loaded with beta carotene, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc and vitamins A and C. And the high fiber content in pumpkin can benefit your dog’s digestive track, which is why it’s often recommended for dogs with stomach issues such as diarrhea.
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“In 2015, the World Health Organization found that processed meats such as bacon and sausage were known carcinogens linked to cancer. Bacon is an incredibly rich and fatty food with a high salt content, which can prove to be too much for a dog’s stomach to handle. Eating a large amount can cause pancreatitis, which can be fatal.” [http://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/natural-foods/can-dogs-eat-pork/]”
As humans became more sophisticated, so did their dogs. Eventually, there emerged specific breeds of dogs, custom-bred to suit the breeders’ local needs and circumstances. The Greyhound, for instance, was the foundation type for the immense Irish Wolfhound and the dainty Italian Greyhound. All three have a distinct family resemblance, but you’d never mistake one for another.
The idea of using treats to train is often equated with bribery. Truthfully, dogs do what works. If using treats gets them to do what you want, then why not? You can also use the world around you as a reinforcement. Every interaction you have with your dog is a learning opportunity, so when you think about it, you probably don’t use food very often except during active training sessions. So why does your dog continue to hang out? Because you reinforce him with praise, touch, games and walks. Just remember, the behavior should produce the treat; the treat should not produce the behavior.