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Discussion Starter #1
I’m starting to teach my 9 week old how to sit, lay down, come, etc. but how many treats a day is too many? If we train for 5 minutes that’s like 10 treats and I usually stop then but what is recommended?
 

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I have a puppy too and I’ve just been using shredded chicken for training just give her less food at dinner depending on how much training we do that day
She’s my first German shepherd though so idk if that’s what ppl are suppose to do that’s just what I do :)


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I don't think there is any rule about a specific number. It depends on a whole lot of things. How rich are the treats? What type are they? Biscuit, chicken, cheese, hot dog, etc. Some treats are really rich and can only be given in small amounts to avoid diarrhea.

Whatever treat you use, you need to look at the calorie total and deduct that from his/her meal. If you give a lot of treats one day, you cannot give the puppy the same amount of kibble for dinner that you normally do. A lot of people actually use their dog's kibble as training treats. They measure out the amount they feed for breakfast and dinner, then use it throughout the day or do training all at once and make the dog work for the meal.

10 treats does not seem like too much, and as long as you are adjusting the food amount, your puppy should be fine. You will know you gave too many treats if the puppy has diarrhea.
 

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I use very tiny bits for treats. If your puppy will work for kibble, measure out a meal, use some for training, and feed the rest in their bowl later.

For higher value treats I like Real Meat Dog Food: https://www.chewy.com/real-meat-company-90-beef-grain-free/dp/110466

A two pound bag lasts me a LONG time, and the pieces are usually small but the larger ones can be easily broken up with your fingers as you go. Bonus is that it does not require refrigeration.

I also like Happy Howie. As roll foods go, it is the least crumbly I've found: https://www.amazon.com/Happy-Howies-lb-Beef-Rolls/dp/B004T3ZK4U/ref=sr_ph_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1530400091&sr=sr-1&keywords=happy+howie

I bought a case of six 2# rolls for $53.79 and free shipping with Amazon Prime a couple of weeks ago - the price has gone up a couple of bucks, but it's still a lot of treats for a very reasonable price. I also got one of these, which makes quick work of dicing food rolls into perfect 1/4" cubes for training: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01HC7BNJA/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
 

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My comment was to imply you don't really need treats to train.
 

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My comment was to imply you don't really need treats to train.
That is certainly an option. You also don't *need* to use toys to train. But many dogs will work more enthusiastically for tangible rewards such as food or toys, in addition to praise, than they will for just praise alone.

And the question wasn't about whether or not treats are necessary, the OP is already using treats, his question was regarding the quantity. If someone came here and said their dog is really into balls or tugging and wanted to know how best to use play as a motivator it wouldn't be particularly helpful to tell them they don't need toys train.

Personally, I don't like to limit my training options by eliminating any potential motivators for no particular reason. :) My dogs respond to food and play as well as my facial expression, my voice, and my body language. The more they want to engage with me, the faster, easier, and more fun our training sessions are.
 

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I like to use a complete food like Freshpet, Red Barn food roll, Natural Balance food roll. then I just subtract from their meals. OR I use their meals. I feed raw so would just make raw meatballs to use.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Op here

I definitely didn’t mean to start a treats vs no treats debate! I’ve just been training with treats Bc that’s how I seen a training video on YouTube do it. So I’ll tell my puppy to sit and if he does I give him a treat. Same thing with potty. I’d like to train no treat but my pup is only 9 weeks and has a hard time paying attention so treats are helping to train repetition wise

The treats I’m using now are Plato pet treats small bites made with organic chicken. However I’m thinking of using actual chicken as a training treat instead

Can I ask you guys at this age is it possible to give the puppy too much love? Lol. Basically I mean I don’t want to spoil him. I only give food if he sits quietly, I only treat if he goes potty or does his commands. But if he’s just hanging out I praise him just so we bond. Am I training him correctly? Also any links to training videos or articles for a young puppy like this would be great!
 

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Op here again. The only thing I want to try not to train with is a “clicker” thing. I’m not sure the name of it but I’d like my puppy to do things strictly on my voice command and not a clicker
 

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I think you’re misunderstanding the concept of the clicker. It’s a teaching tool... you have to teach a behavior before you can command it.

Also... I train with the lowest value food that a dog will work for (typically kibble). Saving high value treats for more difficult tasks or distracting environments.
 

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Op here again. The only thing I want to try not to train with is a “clicker” thing. I’m not sure the name of it but I’d like my puppy to do things strictly on my voice command and not a clicker
The clicker is just a tool. It replaces a marker word, I use Yes!. So I tell Shadow to "look at me" she does and I say Yes! and give her a treat.
When we were working on learning Look at me, I was shovelling treats into her mouth. I buy hotdogs cut them into thin slices and then half the slice, or even quarter it. This gives me lots of treats without her getting fat. As she learns I phase out the treats, but she still gets the marker word.
I also use treats to lure into position for things like down and heel, or when we were learning bed. We phase out treats as the commands or actions are mastered.
 

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Okay sorry I’m a newb this is my first dog! So even if I want to train for ipo someday I should use the clicker to learn things? I thought it would be hard to phase out the clicker but I must be wrong yes?
 

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As mentioned above, we use their food as treats. We measure out the daily amount and take from there for treats and meals. The added bonus is that you can save the "high value" treats for when they are older and we're asking more of them and their dinner just isn't cutting it anymore ;)
 

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IPO is a lot of fun. Many people use a hotdog because it is fairly easy to hold in the palm of your hand and let the pup take nibble off of it (technique gets better with practice). They want a treat that the dog doesn't need to stop and chew. I haven't seen any use a clicker because it is one more thing to hold in your hand. A clicker gives a clear consistent sound that means "you did the right thing" while "yes" can vary with our emotions...but "yes" is always there and is more personal so many people prefer it.

SCHUTZHUND LIFE has many good articles. If you can find a good IPO club the face to face help is golden!
 

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A clicker is not mandatory at all, so if you don’t want to use one it’s perfectly fine. If you decide to use the clicker now, or for a few behaviors - it doesn’t mean you have to use a clicker for life or that your dog will depend on it. If I don’t have my clicker on me... I can still train my dogs. All that to say... you doing IPO later is fine. Clicker has nothing to do with it... in the same way using blocks or fingers to learn to count doesn’t inhibit a child from participating in a spelling bee.
 

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Okay sorry I’m a newb this is my first dog! So even if I want to train for ipo someday I should use the clicker to learn things? I thought it would be hard to phase out the clicker but I must be wrong yes?
Without going into the weeds too much, you can make them dependent on almost anything from the clicker to the way you scratch your head. You have to phase out the food too, but phase out doesn't mean eliminate. You create an expectation of reward, and the reward comes in an expected manner when it does. Like in heeling, correct position will result in the reward coming from above and in line with the left side of your body. Recall, the reward will come from directly in front of you. Its reliable for him, so he does what produced it that way.
 
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