How To Stop Your Dog Begging For Food
Many owners think it’s cute when their dog begs for food, but it can quickly become a bad habit that can be hard to get rid of. Over time, as they are allowed to beg for food, they can become obsessive and develop some very bad behaviours. Eventually they might become aggressive over food towards you or other dogs.
It’s also frustrating when you are trying to eat and your dog is pestering you and won’t leave you alone. If you do things correctly, over time you should be able to stop your dog begging for food. Most of the time it’s the things we are doing that make our dogs worse. Here are some rules to stick by and some tips to keep your greedy dog from begging.
Setting rules and boundaries
You need to set a lot of rules and boundaries for your dog around the house. All family members must follow these rules and boundaries in order to completely stop your dog from begging.
- When dinner time comes, do not feed your dog scraps of food while you are eating. When you are finished, don’t give them food from your plate. Feeding leftovers to your dog will only reinforce their bad behaviour. Your dog will learn if they beg at the table they will get the leftovers. If you must give them some of the leftover food, put it into their bowl after dinner and make them earn it by doing tricks.
- Teach your dog to sit in their bed when you eat and don’t let them move until you finish. This may take some time and patience as they will most likely try and test you. They may move from their bed during dinner, so make sure to put them straight back into their bed and don’t give in.
- Teaching them manners before they eat their own dinner can help. They should sit on command and wait nicely with no begging until you give your cue for them to eat ,this teaches them to be polite around food.
- Ignore your dog when they beg for food and don’t react. Telling your dog to be quiet when they beg will not help the situation, in fact, it will probably just make them beg more.
- When your dog is quiet, reinforce the good behaviour by giving them a treat or some affection. This will help them to learn that what they are doing is good and prevent them from trying to beg.
- If your dog loves to beg over food maybe switch your treats over to a toy for rewards. This will take the focus off the food and divert it onto something else.
- The same rules apply when eating snacks around your, dog don’t throw leftovers to them.
- If your dog still begs when sitting in their bed, shut them in another room while you eat. Being able to see and smell the food is probably making them worse.
- Find ways to distract your dog when food is around. They may be begging because they are bored and have nothing else to focus on. For example, get out their favourite toy so they can play with it while you are eating dinner.
- Set a goal with an aim to reach it by the end of the week. If your dog’s begging behaviour is really bad, you may not be able to try all these training techniques at once. This may be too overwhelming for your dog and they will become very frustrated. Dogs need discipline and training every day and their brains need stimulation. As soon as you stop training your dog will become bored and may start to beg again.
These rules and boundaries will take a lot of time and patience, it’s important not to give up. Keep training your dog every day. It may be a long process if you have an older dog who has been begging most its life, but it’s not impossible to break these habits. Your dog may seem very stubborn or distressed at first, but after a couple of months you will see a positive difference and your dog won’t be hanging around the table begging as often!