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Thread: Growling Over Food... Otherwise Obedient

  1. #11

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    When my dogs are puppies I mess with them when they are eating. Pulling their food away or pulling them away from their food. Sometimes I will take their food away and feed them by hand a little at a time. My goal is to instill the idea that it's my food and I'm letting them eat it. Same as retrieving, it's my bird and they can get it and bring it to me when I say. It has worked for me but I'm sure the personality of the dogs has been a larger factor than anything else.

    I also like to reinforce sit and stay when feeding a pup, I think it translates to steadiness as well. Set the food down and hold the pup a few feet away and don't let him go until he sits, it doesn't take long for a pup to sit and wait to be released. Always keeping it fun. My current "puppy" is nearly three and he still expects some kind of game before he eats.

    Concerning the neighbors kids, always assume they will do everything imaginable to provoke a dog to bite.
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  3. #12
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    The dog needs to understand that it gets food when you allow it.
    Stand next to the dog and feed it on lead. While eating heel the dog away from the food. Pet the dog for a few minutes and when the dog behaves appropriately heel the dog back to food and allow it finish eating. Advance to touching the dog while eating on lead and if any aggression heel them away from the food and again when act right they can resume eating
    They learn quickly to behave to get what they want.

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  4. #13
    Senior Member Sharon Potter's Avatar
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    Breed has nothing to do with it. It takes a dog all of maybe five minutes to eat. Let them eat in peace.

    Control comes before permission to eat. Have the dog sit, you put the food bowl down, then give a release command. Then let the dog eat!

    If you and I are having dinner and every few seconds you pull my plate away or stick your hand in my food, you're likely to get my fork stuck in the back of your hand.

    There is absolutely no reason to insist on playing with or taking away a dog's food while they are trying to eat it. If kids are a concern, first of all teach your kids respectful behavior around animals, and second, feed the dog in a quiet spot away from everything so they can eat without being harassed.
    Sharon Potter

    www.redbranchkennels.net

    Chesapeake Bay Retrievers...too many to list.

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  6. #14
    Senior Member P J's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drunkenpoacher View Post
    When my dogs are puppies I mess with them when they are eating. Pulling their food away or pulling them away from their food. Sometimes I will take their food away and feed them by hand a little at a time. My goal is to instill the idea that it's my food and I'm letting them eat it. Same as retrieving, it's my bird and they can get it and bring it to me when I say. It has worked for me but I'm sure the personality of the dogs has been a larger factor than anything else.

    I also like to reinforce sit and stay when feeding a pup, I think it translates to steadiness as well. Set the food down and hold the pup a few feet away and don't let him go until he sits, it doesn't take long for a pup to sit and wait to be released. Always keeping it fun. My current "puppy" is nearly three and he still expects some kind of game before he eats.

    Concerning the neighbors kids, always assume they will do everything imaginable to provoke a dog to bite.
    Ditto, puppies should learn from the start that the food is yours to take and give. You should be able to touch any part of their body at anytime. I start touching them everywhere and mess with their food bowl a lot when they are young. I continue it periodically when they are grown.
    Paula

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  7. #15
    Senior Member ErinsEdge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tobias View Post
    I suggest the OP contact someone who has been working with chessies all their lives .
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  8. #16
    Senior Member Tobias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sharon Potter View Post
    Breed has nothing to do with it.

    agree - however, the (mis)conceptions held by many are that 'you have to train a chessie with a 2x4' that you 'have to establish yourself as pack leader at all costs' with a chessie, and that 'chessies are stubborn dogs' - From a human perspective it is a 'breed thing' - from a dog perspective it is a dog thing... therefore when a human hears 'advice' from a 'chessie person', they are more likely to follow it, than if they hear the same advice from a lab person.

    lab pups can have the same exact response to being 'messed with' while they eat.... any breed can.

    I treat my labs the same way I treated my chessies.... They all sit and wait for release to be fed and then are left alone to eat in peace.
    The way I look at it, every dog is an opportunity to be a better trainer, and every day is a new day to be a better trainer to the same dog we trained yesterday.

  9. #17
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    I would never mess with a dog when it’s eating. Why is it necessary to do that? What good comes from it? NONE. Let him eat in peace and find something other molehill to make a mountain out of.
    Last edited by Justin Allen; 09-12-2019 at 09:56 AM.
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  10. #18
    Senior Member Sharon Potter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tobias View Post
    agree - however, the (mis)conceptions held by many are that 'you have to train a chessie with a 2x4' that you 'have to establish yourself as pack leader at all costs' with a chessie, and that 'chessies are stubborn dogs' - From a human perspective it is a 'breed thing' - from a dog perspective it is a dog thing... therefore when a human hears 'advice' from a 'chessie person', they are more likely to follow it, than if they hear the same advice from a lab person.

    lab pups can have the same exact response to being 'messed with' while they eat.... any breed can.

    I treat my labs the same way I treated my chessies.... They all sit and wait for release to be fed and then are left alone to eat in peace.
    A couple years ago, Dennis Voigt contacted me because he had a seminar coming up and most of the dogs signed up were Chessies. He asked if he could stop by and work with some to get a feel for what they were like to train. He got his hands on several Chessies here....and at the end of the day when I asked about differences he said "They're dogs". And he's exactly right. People tend to get this big buildup of negative expectations and then do their best to make those perceptions come true. They're dogs.
    Sharon Potter

    www.redbranchkennels.net

    Chesapeake Bay Retrievers...too many to list.

    Team Huntsmith

  11. #19
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    I can think of no good reason to mess with any dog while they're eating.

    Up until very recently, we had multiple dogs, and they were fed in their crates. They had to go into their crates on their own in order to be fed, and stay there voluntarily until all were finished. We reinforced that by giving each a small milk bone after mealtime. Released them with " free dog". No drama at mealtime, just pleasure. -Paul
    Last edited by paul young; 09-12-2019 at 10:39 AM.
    there's no good reason to fatten up a retriever.

  12. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sharon Potter View Post
    Breed has nothing to do with it. It takes a dog all of maybe five minutes to eat. Let them eat in peace.

    Control comes before permission to eat. Have the dog sit, you put the food bowl down, then give a release command. Then let the dog eat!

    If you and I are having dinner and every few seconds you pull my plate away or stick your hand in my food, you're likely to get my fork stuck in the back of your hand.

    There is absolutely no reason to insist on playing with or taking away a dog's food while they are trying to eat it. If kids are a concern, first of all teach your kids respectful behavior around animals, and second, feed the dog in a quiet spot away from everything so they can eat without being harassed.
    Everyone has an opinion on this, but IMHO I have to agree with Sharon on this one!
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