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 Kibble vs Treats for Training?

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AnnieChan91
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PostSubject: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyMon Aug 03, 2015 10:56 am

Hello, everyone!

I'm new here, but have been quite active on the forum for a few weeks now with doing research for my new puppy coming home this weekend. I'm extremely excited to start training my dog once she gets settled in, but I was curious as to whether or not people use kibble vs. treats for training. I've tried to look on the Internet for any preferences, but haven't been successful in seeing how that changes learning. Just curious as to everyone's experience and how kibble or a treat influences training. Thanks in advance for any tidbits that you share!
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tyler.jenkins.125
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyMon Aug 03, 2015 11:27 am

Hi there! Welcome to the forum.

I use Zuke's Naturals training treats when I train Koda. Here is the kind I have. They average about 3.5 calories each so they can eat a bunch of them.

As far as using kibble, you can try. My Koda never was motivated by her kibble because she liked the flavor enough to eat it, but it wasn't tasty enough to be a high value item. The more tasty something is to them, the more value it has in their mind. That's why I use the treats for training because it has more value to her than her regular food. If I pull out Koda's favorite treats she immediately sits and starts slinging her paw everywhere to shake. If I grab a piece of kibble, she may shake or she might not. (She's a fickle little beastie). You can probably get by with using kibble, but the monotony of her eating that same kibble every day might (depending on how she values food) make her a little less motivated than a treat would get her.

I will say that Koda is a crazed maniac when it comes to food. She is a savant for flavor, so I might have a different perspective than someone else who will reply.
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Artic_Wind
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyMon Aug 03, 2015 12:00 pm

With a new puppy, I'd say kibble will work, usually for a few months, but like Tyler said, they can become very fickle, I think once they start getting tastes for different things. One of my dogs, Kohdi, is not treat motivated AT ALL, and only one type of treat will he actually *want*, the others he may eat them, he may not, fortunately he's not my "problem child" when it comes to training, haha. But yeah, I would say you can use kibble for the first few months without issue, after that you may or may not have to *upgrade* Wink

Welcome to the forum! Smile
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RedFlashFire05
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyMon Aug 03, 2015 2:08 pm

you can use kibble as treats when your home, instead of feeding them all their food at once you can reserve some to use as treats for training and if your out and about use higher value treats to keep them focused. you can also have different kinds flavors to rotate your high value treats if they seam to get border of the flavor or mix and match to keep them guessing.


Last edited by RedFlashFire05 on Mon Aug 03, 2015 7:48 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : many typos)
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Rumflower
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyMon Aug 03, 2015 2:38 pm

Something to consider though would be that some dogs get a little quirky and want to be hand fed all the time. I'm not sure if treating solely with kibble would contribute to this or not but there are probably others on here who know more about that. I'm not sure if they would have problems with associating kibble with a hand fed treat and not a primary food source or not but I could see how that might play a role. For loki I mix it up alot but he will do serious work for this frozen treat I make out of bananas peanut butter and non fat plain yogurt.
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CoraTheHusky
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 9:49 am

My advice is a high value treat makes high value success, I use cut up hot dogs to train Cora and it works very well, huskies are stubborn and highly food motivated,dry kibble is a low value treat. If I want Cora to sit and I have kibble in my hand she is going to say (why would I do that for a piece of dehydrated food that you already feed me three times daily) I truly believe that high value is the way to go, Personally it has worked great for me, Cora sits, lays down, stays, waits , is pretty well potty trained. can engage and disengage with me, she goes to her kennel on command and also goes to her mat on command, she knows drop it and leave it as well, I would say she is very well trained at 14 weeks and I seriously think it has to do with the fact that I used high value treats, they are very motivating. Good luck with the new puppy and start training as soon as she or he arrives!
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MGoBlue
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 11:45 am

@CoraTheHusky wrote:
My advice is a high value treat makes high value success, I use cut up hot dogs to train Cora and it works very well, huskies are stubborn and highly food motivated,dry kibble is a low value treat. If I want Cora to sit and I have kibble in my hand she is going to say (why would I do that for a piece of dehydrated food that you already feed me three times daily) I truly believe that high value is the way to go, Personally it has worked great for me, Cora sits, lays down, stays, waits , is pretty well potty trained. can engage and disengage with me, she goes to her kennel on command and also goes to her mat on command, she knows drop it and leave it as well, I would say she is very well trained at 14 weeks and I seriously think it has to do with the fact that I used high value treats, they are very motivating. Good luck with the new puppy and start training as soon as she or he arrives!  

I actually disagree slightly with this response. I think it varies by dog. For example, we used Zuke's training treats to train Bode and it worked wonderfully. With Logan, he gets wayyyy to excited over them to even focus, so kibble is the better way to go.

Really, you should only use high value treats for special things. Otherwise, they lose their attractiveness. For training sessions, you should be doing a bunch at a time, so using a small "low value" treat or kibble is easy and low calorie since you will likely be giving a high amount of them. I would save the high value for situations that are more difficult, such as recall amidst distractions.
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Danzig's Mommy
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 11:58 am

We used treats specially for training with Danzig. It kept him interested in us but not so much he wasn't focusing on what we were saying. In his case, he doesn't like his kibble enough to be interested in it for training, especially when given over and over.

Sara I agree. The only time we give things such as hot dogs, is for very important things like taking pills. That way it's a special treat he can't refuse. Plus I'm not sure if want him eating high value treats like that in such quantity. We try to feed as little of " people food" as possible because we don't appreciate beggars. Just my opinion though.
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CoraTheHusky
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 12:13 pm

@MGoBlue wrote:

@CoraTheHusky wrote:
My advice is a high value treat makes high value success, I use cut up hot dogs to train Cora and it works very well, huskies are stubborn and highly food motivated,dry kibble is a low value treat. If I want Cora to sit and I have kibble in my hand she is going to say (why would I do that for a piece of dehydrated food that you already feed me three times daily) I truly believe that high value is the way to go, Personally it has worked great for me, Cora sits, lays down, stays, waits , is pretty well potty trained. can engage and disengage with me, she goes to her kennel on command and also goes to her mat on command, she knows drop it and leave it as well, I would say she is very well trained at 14 weeks and I seriously think it has to do with the fact that I used high value treats, they are very motivating. Good luck with the new puppy and start training as soon as she or he arrives!  


I actually disagree slightly with this response. I think it varies by dog. For example, we used Zuke's training treats to train Bode and it worked wonderfully. With Logan, he gets wayyyy to excited over them to even focus, so kibble is the better way to go.

Really, you should only use high value treats for special things. Otherwise, they lose their attractiveness. For training sessions, you should be doing a bunch at a time, so using a small "low value" treat or kibble is easy and low calorie since you will likely be giving a high amount of them. I would save the high value for situations that are more difficult, such as recall amidst distractions.


I would have to agree that it varies with each dog, if Zukes works for you than that rocks, if kibble works for you that is also great. But I do disagree greatly with your second statement, using high value treats for only special things is not ideal, when your puppy is 8 weeks old a sit is the most special thing they will ever do for that week so you should treat them as such, maybe I should clarify I do not give Cora a hot dog piece every time she does a sit now at 14 weeks old , I give her a hot dog piece maybe once every 10 sits, with the high value she will give me the sit in hopes that this time she gets the hotdog treat it has proven extremely successful for myself and the training school I work with. Smile
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CoraTheHusky
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 12:22 pm

@Danzig's Mommy wrote:
We used treats specially for training with Danzig. It kept him interested in us but not so much he wasn't focusing on what we were saying. In his case, he doesn't like his kibble enough to be interested in it for training, especially when given over and over.

Sara I agree. The only time we give things such as hot dogs, is for very important things like taking pills. That way it's a special treat he can't refuse. Plus I'm not sure if want him eating high value treats like that in such quantity. We try to feed as little of " people food" as possible because we don't appreciate beggars. Just my opinion though.

I also do not appreciate beggars, that is why we do not feed our dogs at the table, feeding your dog human food in training will not make them become beggars, to condition a dog there is action and reward to create a beggar dog you would have the action of letting them place their face on your table and the reward would be giving them the food, its simple psychology really. And just right everyone can have their own way of training do whatever works for you, Also disclaimer to anyone worried about calorie intake I cut the pieces in the pee sized amounts.
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MGoBlue
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 12:27 pm

@CoraTheHusky wrote:
Also disclaimer to anyone worried about calorie intake I cut the pieces in the pee sized amounts.

I hope you mean "pea-sized" lol!
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CoraTheHusky
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 12:42 pm

@MGoBlue wrote:

@CoraTheHusky wrote:
Also disclaimer to anyone worried about calorie intake I cut the pieces in the pee sized amounts.


I hope you mean "pea-sized" lol!

Lololololol lol! yes I defiantly meant pea sized not pee lol that's so funny, the beauty of typos
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Danzig's Mommy
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 1:04 pm

We don't eat a table so I don't think that would ever be an issue. Our GSP had major surgery a couple of years ago and the only way he'd take his meds is with cheese. He still comes running every time he hears that wrapper lol.
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CoraTheHusky
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 1:31 pm

I'm not exactly sure how else your dog would beg of you don't eat at a table?, if you mean jumping for food in your hands it's the same concept of conditioning, and that's hilarious at least you know that cheese will be your saving grace when you need him todo something! ☺️☺️
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MiyasMomma
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 2:21 pm

Zoe, haha, dogs can smell food a mile away, lol, even though Miya is not a beggar at meal time, she is when I prep food. She just sits near me, looks up at me, and if I ignore her too long I get her sad wooo. It's quite funny, until I have to tell her to wait, which she knows go lay down some where else until dinner time. I feed her when it's our dinner time, and it works for her not to beg while we eat.

Miya was never really food motivated. So decision of kibble vs treats was never an option as a puppy. Also, imho, treats should be limited to teaching something new, or in a high stressed situation high reward treat. As a puppy I fully agree giving kibble for generic requests and saving the high value treats for the more difficult requests are the way to go. But at some point, again, imho, as the dog is older the reward should be a "good girl/boy" and a shoulder rub. Miya responded to positive verbal praise, and still does. Some other rewards I used instead of treats were, allowing her to sniff around on walks as a reward for walking with out pulling, along with the good girl. Playing games that I initiate in the middle of training. Miya to this day loves playing "fast training", where I will hold her tugs and give several commands in a row, her reward is to fetch tugs and play.
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 3:32 pm

I am very aware that dogs can smell very well, I have never dealt with begging at the table or while prepping food, like I said it's simple  psychology action and reaction. Everyone can do what they want I just find it silly to give an 8 week old puppy Kibble for a sit because it is a  generic request, that makes no sense to me when teaching a young puppy high value is important for reliability, like I said before everyone can do what they want but all of the dogs I know and my own are some of the most reliable with their commands using this method and that's the advice I give to this original poster! ☺️☺️☺️
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tyler.jenkins.125
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 4:04 pm

Da Rules wrote:
1. Here we prefer clarity to agreement. Obviously not everyone is going to agree on a topic; here we prefer to talk out our differences in a respectful manner to ensure mutual understanding and respect.


There is no need to be defensive.
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MiyasMomma
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 4:06 pm

Zoe I am sorry, I was laughing with you on the smelling of dogs. Totally not meant for you to be offended.

Every one is different as far as treats and training. Quite honestly, imho, I feel people shouldn't give treats to a dog for training purposes, at all. Why, because many dogs rely on the treat to do the things we ask of them. With no use of treats with Miya, she is very reliable, and has great recall, with out ever using a treat. With that said, I had the opportunity to go to the training center where my next pup will be born. The trainer is a positive, treat based, and clicker based trainer, for puppies. I have the opportunity to get free training classes for the new pup. He asked where I had Miya trained, and told him I did, and that it was based on positive praise training, no treat training, and he was quite surprised at how well behaved she was. Basically what i am saying Zoe, is that we all have personal preference on how we do things, such as training, and giving advice in a manner that says this is what worked for me, but have an open mind to see what other forms of training are out there gives everyone a better understanding of what's out there. It also gives people the opportunity to choose what may work for them. Giving choices is fundamental at training a dog, because not every dog will respond with the way someone else does things. Miya would have been a complete failure at training if I had chosen to do clicker training, or had I tried to use high value treats. More importantly i would have been completely frustrated trying to figure out how to train her, had I only knew to give treats.

Nothing of what I said or what others said was meant for you to take personally, nor negatively, and giving choices to questions for advice is the beauty of what this forum is about.

thank you for adding that Tyler. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 4:23 pm

That is totally cool that you trained Miya differently then I train Cora, I am in no way upset or feeling defensive I was only trying to give the original poster my personal advice, and Tyler I am being respectful, I agree Renee clearly knows how to train her dogs I was just showing my differing opinion and there was a miscommunication where I thought Renee was honestly asking me if I knew that dogs have keen smell she was joking around and I didn't get it no big deal. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 5:57 pm

defiantly agree with Renee to keep an open mind when it come to training there are always many what to go about it and not all methods work for everyone.
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyTue Aug 04, 2015 6:10 pm

Cora, since we're talking about begging.  I eat on the counter where my computer sets.  Now when I go into the kitchen to get something to eat, I'm trailed by both dogs.  Anything I have on the kitchen counter is perfectly safe - neither of them has ever more than sniffed.  What they're waiting for is for me to drop something - and then for me to give one of them permission to "get it".

When I've taken my plate into the living room (the counter separates the kitchen and the living room) Avalanche goes to his corner or lays in front of the couch; Sasha sets beside me, she's not begging per se, but she's not going to miss the chance that I might slip.

Neither of mine normally get people food and both of them know that begging is not going to get them anything; Sasha doesn't even stare at me, she's just patiently waiting for me to slip.

Sasha gets one treat a day - which is, in fact her glucosamine, etc - and she has to work for that.  Sometimes it's set, stay (the stay has been a continuing work in progress), sometimes it's "come" when we're walking and she's off lead.  She's very food conscious but that's a big step down from the food aggressive that she was.

I have to agree that every dog is different, some things work for some dogs; not even food works with all dogs.  As Renee (I think) said we exchange ideas and hope that someone has one that works when everything we've tried hasn't.
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyWed Aug 05, 2015 9:07 pm

I train my miya with boiled chicken breast, I use about a dime size because that's all it takes for her to be attentive. So far she can sit, high five, paw, sit pretty, lay down, roll over, and go to her bed and go it into her kennel. She still does those commands without the chicken. I haven't taught the recall command but she comes when i do ask her. I want to practice that more though cause it is a useful command.

But yeah chicken breast is what I use to train my husky majority of the time.
Oh one more important note, I ALWAYS train her before dinner when she's hungry. I believe that will boost the success rate of your training because the dog is hungry and will be more attentive.

Anyways, this is how I train my husky, everyone's method is different as well as everyone's dog is different.

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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyThu Aug 06, 2015 6:14 am

When we first got Ami, he would do back flips for a nugget of kibble - that nugget of kibble was the most wonderful thing in the world. For training purposes, I start using a treat to shape the behavior I'm looking for, then gradually phase out the treat in exchange for "good boy" with a scratch of the ears.

As for eating at table - it has become a wonderful bonding ritual between my husband and the dogs. I prepare a custard cup of whatever in our meal is suitable for the dogs, serve it to hubby with either a coctail fork or demitasse spoon (hubby doesn't like dog slime on his hands Rolling Eyes ). The dogs sit beside hubby at the table, so full of excitement and oh do they obey, sit pretty or lay down and each waits there turn. It adds joy and laughter to our dinner table. And, even when they are outside romping, I don't know if its the sound of me opening the silverware drawer or serving up the food from the cooking pans, but they come running and ring the doggy doorbell when its time for dunner lol! And ditto when the whipped cream can goes "pffft" Razz
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyThu Aug 06, 2015 9:55 am

Thank you, everyone, for your responses! They were all very informative, and I will be gauging how the new puppy reacts to food to determine where to start. She comes home tomorrow, so there's a lot of anticipation for me at the moment. Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Kibble vs Treats for Training?   Kibble vs Treats for Training? EmptyThu Aug 06, 2015 11:15 am

Kibble has worked wonders with my dog. He generally wasn't that motivated for treats if he had already eaten, so I had to catch him when he was actually hungry. We basically just do "Nothing In Life Is Free" so he has to "earn" his meal each time. Don't get my wrong - I don't deny him food, I just make him do some things before I give to him. I don't think that just giving them kibble instead of something else promotes the idea that the task isn't special or important. If you can get the dog to work for food then it makes every task important, because food is a REWARD and a REWARD means they did something special. Doesn't matter what the reward is, just as long as you can get them to understand it is a reward.

My dog is the most food-motivated dog I have ever seen, and I don't know if that is because of how I have been training him since we got him, or if he was already programmed that way (he was by far the biggest one in his litter, so he's used to pigging out). If you use kibble, you have a guaranteed interest in your training session at meal time. In between meal times I do use other treats, including Zukes. It just depends on what is available, but every time it is actually mealtime, I find it helps a great deal to be able to use kibble and know that I'm not overstuffing him with treats. For example, I might put half of his meal in my pocket and go for a walk and just treat him with kibble when he is walking on a loose leash. If I were to do that with Zukes, it would be A LOT of treats in addition to feeding him a meal. So it helps to get a lot of training without overfeeding.
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