There are some things in dog training that are so dang easy they are hard to believe. This section is especially for those crazy easy training tips.
Hand feed your puppy. It’s that simple. Until your puppy’s adult teeth grow in at around 5 months we have a miraculous opportunity to teach our puppies to be gentle with their mouths (the all important acquired bite inhibition) and prevent resource guarding all in one easy step. Simply throw out that food bowl and have your family dispense all meals by hand until 6 months of age. Here’s why…
It prevents food guarding. Guarding valued objects and food is a completely natural behavior for dogs and something that must be actively prevented in puppies. Feeding by hand teaches pups that hands bring food, not take it away. A lesson they will carry into their adult years.
It creates a gentle mouth. Dogs only have a short window in which they can learn how to use their mouths on people, a crucial lesson for your dog’s future well-being. Learning to discern between fingers and food even when excited is critical, especially in a household with small children.
It makes you awesome! We, and our dogs, would do good to remember that we’re the ones with the thumbs which means we have the power. If they want to eat, they’re going to have to go through us. Every hand fed session reminds our dogs that we are the all mighty keepers of the food. Do not give this great power away to a food bowl.
Hope you enjoyed this crazy easy training tip. This can also do wonders for newly acquired adult dogs or dogs beginning a training program. Now get out there and hand feed!