When sitting down to enjoy a nice meal, your experience may be thwarted by a begging, whining, pawing pup at your feet. We love our dogs like family and we treat them well. Sometimes that means slipping them treats from our plate while at the dinner table when we know we shouldn’t. These moments of temporary over indulgence can lead to begging for table scraps. Not only does this disturb your meal, but it also leads to extra calories for your canine.
Luckily, even though you may have unintentionally started a bad habit, begging can be easy to curb if you stick to your guns. The first and most obvious step is to stop giving your dog table food. It can be hard to resist those puppy eyes but by giving your dog food when he begs, you are reinforcing the begging behavior. If you stop the reward for unwanted behavior, your dog will learn that begging does not equal treats.
Make sure your dog understands that begging will not result in attention or affection from you. It may be difficult as first for you to ignore their behavior but it is necessary while teaching them that it is not an acceptable behavior.
Be consistent. If you only follow through some of the time, your dog will not get a clear message that the begging is unwanted. Make sure everyone in your household understands how to handle your begging pup and that everyone enforces the same rules consistently.
With some time, your dog will understand what is expected of him while you and your family enjoy your meals together.