If you are reading this, then you maybe someone who cannot resist your dog's puppy eyes! At the table or while you are having a cuppa joe, your dog may just walk upto you, paw at you, bark perhaps and leave a puddle of drool on the floor because they simply must have a bite of whatever it is you are savouring!
If this sounds familiar, then you need to learn how to manage this behaviour and understand why this happens.
Why do they beg for food, you may ask?
- Well, your dogs have far more evolved senses of smell and they do in fact have a copious amount of taste buds too! So whenever you bring out a hot plate of savouries, the smell and sights are simply irresistible!
- Dogs also know that by sitting well or by barking, THEY have trained YOU to give in to their requests. Every time you have caught them being cute, you have showered love on them, fed them, allowed them on your laps too...sound familiar?
The time we need to correct this behaviour is when the dogs' adorable faces start turning into demanding barks and egregious table top surfing to pick up the food.
How does one correct this behaviour?
- Ignoring the dog: By not making eye contact with them and by not acknowledging their behaviour, you are teaching the dog that begging gives them no scraps..so yes, that means, NO table scraps to the dog!
- Teaching the dog to rest in a particular place while you eat: A place command or asking the dog to rest on their beds will help you teach the dog to stay calm while you eat. It is important to keep some dog-treats (not table scraps) handy so you can keep throwing it at the dog while they rest at that place
- Setting your dog onto a sniffing game while you eat. By keeping your dog busy while you eat, you are slowly eliminating the begging habit and you will have a tired dog who has used their noses well without fixating on your plate
These are just a few ways to work with the dogs on this annoying habit, but contact us if you need any further help with counter surfing or table jumping behaviours.