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Discussion Starter #1
I still haven't gotten the hang of this. On class nights, Pimg doesn't get dinner because she is going to get so many treats at class. But on non-class nights (at home training nights) she gets dinner, and then a ton of treats during training...

I can't figure out how to manage this. It seems simple enough, but when you are feeding tons and tons of treats for agility training how should food be managed? I have started reducing her dinner meal (I feed twice a day) by 1/2 cup. I wonder if that's enough.

Further, and perhaps more importantly, my dog has bloated in the past. I am always extra careful about working her (especially jumping) with any kind of food in her stomach. Obviously, with training single bar collected jumps- tons of treats are going in.

I really don't think that I have provided a clear question- so I hope you guys can deduce it. haha! I suppose what I am asking is:

If my dog has bloated in the past, then what is the best way to manage lots of treats with lots of jumping? Further, what is the best way to manage lots of treats with standard eating quantities?

Thanks!

(Note- I have been using very small treats, the size of Zukes Minis. But there is still the quantity issue)
 

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I don' t know enough about bloat to comment on managing it with treats and training.

With managing quantity, I give (like a lot of people) tiny bits of hot dog and tiny bits of cheese. Like smaller than the fingernail on your pinkie finger. And then I would take 1/2cup to 1cup of kibble and mix it in with the treats the night before and let it all sit in the fridge together. The scent and the juices from the treats get all mixed in with the kibble and it becomes a treat too. . . especially if your dog is hungry. Then I put the treats and the tasty smelling kibble in my bait bag and use it for training. I subtract the amount of kibble that I gave at training from the regular meals. If the dog is in good body condition and not looking a bit chunky I don't worry about the extra training treats, figuring they'll burn off the extra calories in class. If they're starting to chunk up I subtract a little more from the daily kibble ration.

So basically, that's a long-winded way of saying I give part of the daily kibble ration with the training treats, all mixed up so it's nice and smelly and tasty. Hope that helps!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Great idea there with mixing the kibble/treats. I've been considering using kibble instead of treats for this very reason, even though I know they aren't high-value enough. Mixing it in though should certianly raise the reward value. Excellent tip!

[EDIT]- not to mention that this would cut down on the number of treats (or hotdogs, etc) you need to buy.
 

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What time is your class? Wolfie had class at 7 at night, but it was 40 minutes away. I started feeding him dinner earlier in the day, but he got car sick. I switched to feeding him when we got home, and he would eat a smaller amount because of the treats at class. He only had 3 classes before I switched to private lessons, so I can't say what I would have done long term. Maybe you could try changing Pimg's mealtimes and quantities around to fit the schedule.
 

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Her class is at 7:30, 35mins away. I don't get off work until 6 and at that, I generally work a bit late anyhow (salary position). We usually take off for class almost immediately after I get home from work. She is the epitome of "GSD whine" and I try to run/walk/play hard before class to try to get some of the excitement whine out. Haha- I thought for sure I was going to get kicked out of the first class before it even started with her whining so loud! We weren't kicked out, but we were banished to the lobby by the class that was just ending (prior to ours starting).
 

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This is a good question and have to say I just to mental calorie math myself.

I usually train around my house during the day. So if there are tons of treats involved, I just cut back on the supper time food amount.

I also do what you do on training night, either no dinner or only about 1/2 cup depending on the dogs and what we are training. Glory is still a puppy as far as needing and getting tons of treats in class. Bretta gets much less food, only on the start line and contacts mostly, it's THE TOY that's more her reward so she gets more dinner before class.
 

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I mix the kibble with the soft treats, though I hadn't thought of putting it all in the fridge. Dante is food motivated enough that the soft treats mixed with kibble works well. Then I just reduce his kibble for dinner that night.

I just estimate. But I haven't had problems with bloat, so I can see why you'd be more concerned about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
But I haven't had problems with bloat, so I can see why you'd be more concerned about it.
For sure. Pimg has a massive chest. I just measured it to be 31.5" in circumference, and her waist is 23". I don't know what's typical, I just know when I look at her chest, I see something 10" tall- which seems big! Since she's bloated before, I try to take extra caution to not put her in a situation that could induce it again. I think I should refresh my memory on GDV again... Maybe there's some tips out there for dogs post-GDV to prevent it from happening again.

[EDIT]- Opps, 10" is the diameter of a 31.5" circle. However, I failed to account for the fact that Pimg's body isn't a circle. When I wrote 10" above, it seemed small but I didn't put much thought into it. She is not that wide- probably about 8.5 - 9" wide making her chest cavity about 12" tall. Which seems about right. At any rate- when you look at it and think that a large soccer ball could fit in there- you realize it's pretty big.
 
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