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How to stop dog from begging?

If your dog is healthy, he is unlikely to refuse a piece of food in excess of the norm. And dining people are a great excuse to get an extra portion of goodies.

Why do dogs beg for human food?

The first most common reason is to reinforce this behavior that is completely natural for a dog. The dog begs for food, you can’t stand it and treat it to something tasty, because for us this is a manifestation of boundless love for the animal. “She wants something tasty so much, I just can’t refuse.” And the trap is that it only takes a couple of times to "give up" and that's it, you have taught the dog to beg for food.

Having received a reward for his pitying look, the dog will repeat this behavior over and over again in the hope that success will be repeated. Like in a casino: knowing that one day she might be lucky, the dog will bet again and again. Such variant reinforcement is our helper in reinforcing the necessary skill, but also our enemy when it comes to undesirable behavior, such as begging for food.

This leads to the most effective way to deal with the problem: so that the dog does not ask for food from the table, never give him food from the table. Very simple, but at the same time too complicated. After all, not all of us have iron nerves and tend to spoil our beloved dog. And even if you yourself are a flint, then guests, grandparents and children may not share your aspirations and surreptitiously feed the dog while you are not watching.However, if there is a malicious treat in your family, and you adamantly ignore the hungry moans from under the table, there is a high probability that only the person who reinforces such behavior will beg for a dog.

It is important to understand that punishment will not help if the dog at least sometimes gets the desired result. And besides the food itself from the table, begging can be supported by your attention. If the dog is looking for him, then even the formidable Stop and Don't can reinforce bad behavior. Therefore, it is important to analyze the entire chain of behavior as a whole.

What to do with the endlessly suffering dog at the table?

Teach her alternative behavior. Each time you sit down at the table, give your dog a long-lasting treat in the designated spot to help build the habit.

The second method requires more involvement in the process or the use of an assistant. If the dog is already familiar with standing in place, the process will go faster, but in any case, set yourself up for long-term regular work. At each meal, send the dog to a place (which can be just a rug or blanket in a designated area in or outside the kitchen). And reward her for staying where she is while the person is eating at the table. At first, you will have to encourage very often, especially if you have a puppy or a young dog who finds it difficult to keep himself in his paws. It may even seem that everything is pointless and the dog will never be able to sit still while someone is eating. It is important not to stop working and make it regular.Our task is to explain to the dog that staying in place is much more profitable than sitting at the table, because nothing EVER falls for begging. But if you sit quietly and do not leave the designated place, then treats will fly in for this (the usual dog food or allowed snacks).

Over time, the frequency of reinforcements can be gradually reduced, giving out pieces at large intervals, or only for a more relaxed wait. If you have any additional questions - we are happy to wait for an individual consultation with a cynologist :)