Discussion in 'Off-Topic & Chit Chat' started by JessDM86, Jul 11, 2012.

  1. JessDM86 Member

    Well I have a question Since i am new i may ask silly questions so bare with me. How do you know when your pet has mastered a skill you are teaching? And When do you stop giving snacks on the first trick and start treating on a new skill.
    Dogster and tigerlily46514 like this.

  2. tigerlily46514 Honored Member


    Probably everyone here will have all different ideas.

    I feel, it is better to risk click/treat TOO long,
    than to fade treats too soon. Removing the rewards TOO soon, can confuse some dogs and slow the learning down,
    but no harm at all in rewarding a well known trick. I also fade the treats out gradually, inserting praise only, and make food rewards random,
    slowly fading them out,
    rather than abruptly removing them entirely all at once. I keep my treats super tiny so i don't much worry about having a fat or full dog,

    How do i know when my dog does know the trick?
    wow, i am laffing, cuz i am not sure i can put it into words, :LOL: but someone else probably can. I guess when i can give cue,
    or hand signal,
    and use no lure at all, (if it was a lured trick)
    or see no delay from dog nor signs of confusion from my dog, on a consistent basis.

    but i still continue, for many days, to reward tricks Buddy has just learned, cuz for *my* dog, he might do great on his new trick on Monday,
    but if i stop rewarding it, or practicing it,
    and don't do that trick again for a week,
    well, my dog might backslide or forget or something.

    i give my dog daily lessons, even if it's only 5 or 10 minutes, especially when he is just learning a new trick.
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  3. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    i also think there is a difference,
    between the moment a dog "gets it"
    and when the dog solidly knows the trick like a rock, from lots of practice.
    I still give rewards while my dog is doing a fairly new trick for first week or two after he "gets it", and then fade out rewards slowly.

    and it's yet another thing,
    when the dog can do the well known trick amidst distractions<---my dog gets prizes for that, too.
    Dogster likes this.
  4. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    //"And When do you stop giving snacks on the first trick and start treating on a new skill."//

    I still give treats for tricks my dog learned 4 years ago, now and then.

    It's okay to reward both the dogs' old trick,
    and when dog does well learning his new trick.

    my dog sometimes gets frustrated if he can't understand new trick, see,
    and at those times,
    i ask for his old, well known trick, reward THAT,
    he now feels better,:rolleyes:
    and then go back to working on his new trick.

    i almost never teach two new tricks at same exact lesson, (but, some ppl say they do)
    but, i might work on NewTrickA at 2pm, for 10 minutes,
    work on NewTrickB at 4pm, for 10 minutes.
    Mr-Remington and Dogster like this.
  5. Anneke Honored Member

    Well I use this rule. When my dogs performs the trick on cue 8 out of 10 times, then I feel he has mastered this trick and I start interval treating. Meaning I ask for the trick twice before I treat, then three times, then four times, then go back to one time, then to three times, then to two times and so on.

    But I might not be the best person to give advice, because I almost always have treats in my pockets:whistle: I really have a hard time fading treats completely:oops:
  6. JessDM86 Member

    thank you all these are great answers all of them! On the same subject what kind of treats can you give your pup all day long with eating that is not going to get him overweight? I just dont want to oversnack him with doggie bones, meat treats and pup sticks and It be my fault I an getting him fat, lol? I just ask cause when he grows up german shepards are known for throwing hips out and things if i have that right! I am just a concerned mommy and want to do things right.
    Ripleygirl likes this.
  7. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    //"! On the same subject what kind of treats can you give your pup all day long with eating that is not going to get him overweight?"//

    Another great question! i wish more people asked this BEFORE their dog becomes overweight!

    A reward doesn't always have to be food, for starters. Sometimes, i can click, and instead of food, my dog gets to tug on a special toy i only let him see during tricks training. Because he never gets to play with that toy, it's a high value reward for my dog to play with that toy. I can also use old toys, too, to play tuggie as his reward.
    some ppl here have dogs who much love a tennis ball, and for those dogs, that is a high value reward.

    If you plan to use toys now and then as a reward, it's vital to teach cue "release" or "let go" or "give" or something,--------- or lessons get too too interrupted as you work to get the toy back again!:ROFLMAO: It's not hard to teach a dog "release" though,;) (as a whole separate lesson)...

    On days i have used tons of treats, i cut his meal size back, or occasionally skip his evening meal entirely, about once a week. But my dog is ADULT dog, and i don't think you can skip a meal with a baby dog. Instead of an evening meal, i play with my dog, or take him for extra walks, and then he does not seem to notice he missed an evening meal.

    Store bought treats are often crapola, and the better ones cost a lot if you train often, it adds up.
    The treat recipe section, has some great ideas on treats, i try very very hard to stay away from treats with FLOUR in them, as dogs do not need flour.

    Here is the one i use most often, which i feel is lower calorie, as each treat is only 1/3 liver, and is 2/3 low calorie fresh vegetables,:D
    and so far, all dogs love this recipe,
    again, remember, break up training treats to be SMALL, like size of a raisen,

    or size of a pea for smaller dogs.


    ^be sure to DRAIN the ingredient super well, if you boil them, i wish i had made that point more strongly.:oops:

    Here is easy cheesy (but slightly messy) treat recipe, "Dog Granola" but not low calorie, depending on which kibble you use, imo, but this works in a pinch if you are out of dog treats...

    Here is new recipe recently added by Jackie,
    for "Dog Meatloaf": (also not low calorie, but healthy and delicious)

    and there are many other recipes in the Treat recipe section :D to look over, again, as much as you can, try to avoid flour based dog treats.
    Dogster likes this.
  8. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    also, the site admin, Jean Cote, said he sometimes uses frozen green beans as a food reward, as his dogs enjoy them.

    Some ppl here use plain ol kibble for their dogs treats.

    I also use bits of real meat, all kinds of meat, but cut up SMALL,
    or hotdogs, or hotdog bits rolled in parmesan cheese.

    what each dog finds a high value reward, varies from dog to dog. i also believe,
    that varying the reward, adds interest to training for the dog. My dog seesm to much enjoy a change up of what prize he gets after a click,
    sometimes a tuggie session,
    sometimes a bit of fish, poultry, pork, beef, venison, whatever meat we have,
    sometimes a tiny bit of cheese,
    sometimes a homemade treat,
    sometimes a bit of hotdog,
    sometimes a chance to tug on that one toy he never gets to play with otherwise,
    sometimes a bit of ice,
    sometimes a bit of warm egg,
    my dog seems to enjoy some variety.
    Mr-Remington and Dogster like this.
  9. Dogster Honored Member

    The best store-bought treats that i found (If you don't want to use homemade treats) is freeze-dried liver. There re no bad ingredients, just liver. These work really well for my dog, she gets real hyper when she sees them come out.:) But you have to introduce them slowly, cuz dogs can get diarrhea from eating too many.:sick::poop:
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  10. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    Sound GREAT, dogster, is great tip!!

    but liver is loaded with calories, if one is looking for low calorie treat for daily training sessions.

    most meat is loaded with calories, and liver is very high calorie.

    which is why in my recipe, "Liver Cookies"
    i dilute the liver with 2/3 vegetables, otherwise, i'd just give Buddy the plain ol liver itself,
    that's just toooo many calories for as much as i train...
    Dogster likes this.
  11. rouen Experienced Member

    Zukes Minis are a decent treat. They're the only training type(small, soft and smelly) treat I'll buy. And they're only 3 calories per piece. With Dingo and Dasy I usually break the treats into 3 pieces, so they're essentially getting one calorie per treat.
    Kikopup did a video about treats, at the end she mentions treat size.
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  12. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    yeah, those seem like decent treats, so far as store bought treats go, but, they should be for $10 to $15 per pound!!!:eek: Real actual meat is usually less expensive that $10 per pound;) ...but, for now and then, for places you need treats at room temp for more than hours*,
    if you can snag a bag on sale, that treat seems a good pick, too.

    *most homemade treats are okay at room temp for hours, or one can leave house with frozen homemade treats to add to time they're safe.
    or, bring cooler, and only re-fill your treat bag every few hours or so.
    Dogster likes this.
  13. JessDM86 Member

    I am just so excited I am getting answers on here. This is like a facebook but about dogs, This is more fun though. Your advice is great. I belive my pup has mastered sit and recongnozes his name and comes most the time. We are working on "come" Since the time I am trying to put EVERYONES word to use and be a growing mommy, as well as a good one! Ill ask again soon! Thank You
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  14. Dogster Honored Member

    I should have added that I give Shivon very tiny pieces of the liver, a bit bigger than a crumb:cautious::p:ROFLMAO: She does not mind, cuz it tastes good, LOL:LOL:

    But she LOVES those liver cookies!!!! She could eat a whole bag if she wanted to:LOL:
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  15. Ripleygirl Experienced Member

    Does your dog like veg? I freeze very small chunks of carrot and use as treats as *my* dog goes nuts for them. You put a dog treat and a piece of carrot in front of her and she goes for the carrot everytime! My dog, unfortunately, doesn't work for toy rewards so treats are the way to go with her, I do need to keep working with the treat for a while, not just a couple of sessions with treat rewards but I also extend what she has to do to gain the treat. I don't proof a trick a couple of times then remove the treat but I do piece together larger strings of tricks in order for her to have her treat once I feel she has a single trick down to a tee. She works for clicks though rather than just the treat. If you have a treat orientated dog it stops them rushing the trick for a treat because they work for the click reward rather than just looking for the treat that is in your hand/treat bag. They concentrate better for a period of time.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  16. 648117 Honored Member

    I give Holly a treat most times that she correctly does a "trick" (even sit and down) because I see it as "paying" her. :)
    Just because she is good at the trick doesn't mean she doesn't deserve a reward for doing it when I ask.
    I would not be very happy if I got paid for doing a new job and then when I was good at it I stopped getting paid :( .

    But I guess it depends on your view on trick training.

    Also, Holly doesn't seem to find just a pat very rewarding.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  17. rouen Experienced Member

    Ripleygirl, your post made me remember when Dasy was a puppy she was crazy about raspberries. When we were potty training her she'd get some berries fresh off the bush for doing her business. The one time she ever door bolted she ran straight for the berry bush. :D
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  18. Chardogs Active Member

    Seeing that this is a questions page i may as well ask a question. Its not dog related, but how do you upload a photo signature I have been trying for several hours and cant figure it out! plz help me!!!
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  19. rouen Experienced Member

    Chardogs, if you hold your cursor over your name towards the top of the page a drop down menu will appear. Click where it says signature in the drop menu. Then it's the same as when you post a pic on the boards.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  20. Evie Experienced Member

    My dog trainer described the way we use treats when training dogs as similar to gambling. People put money into slot machines on the off chance that they will get the reward at the end. The slot machines reward randomly... not every time, but just often enough to keep people's interest in it..... So basically, treating your dog is basically continuing it's addiction lol. They do the trick you ask HOPING that they will get rewarded for it and so long as you reward intermittently enough, there shouldn't be a problem :p

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