Category Archives: dog treats

How to Teach Your Dog to Clean Up His Toys

By Langley Cornwell

There are days when I take a break from my home office, walk into the den and shake my head at the mess. And it’s not a human mess. You see, we have a chest full of dog toys in the den and on cold, wet mornings or insufferably hot days when the dogs don’t want to play outside, one of our pooches inevitably empties the entire contents of the chest onto the floor. The result? Our den is turned into a Doggie Toyland!

I had to find a way to remedy the situation. A local dog trainer suggested I teach my dogs to pull their own weight around the house. Here are the basics for teaching your dog to clean up his toys:

Toy Container

• Consolidate your dog’s toys in a container with a wide mouth; an open plastic tub, cardboard box or giant basket will work. Make sure the toy container’s sides are low enough that your dog can simply drop a toy into it.

• Place the container in a location that is easy to access. Put some thought into this step because you need to keep the chest in that location so your dog will always know where to find the toy chest. Moving it around will confuse him.

Training Basics

• Begin this exercise when all the toys are scattered on the floor.

• Get a fistful of your dog’s favorite treats. Right now we’re using CANIDAE Bakery Snacks with Turkey, Quinoa and Butternut Squash. Slyly drop a few of the treats into the empty toy chest.

• Locate your dog’s favorite toy on the floor and call him to you. Coax him to take the toy in his mouth and walk with you to the empty toy chest.

• Point at the treat inside the chest and encourage the dog to take the treat. As he is reaching for the treat his mouth will open. If he successfully (accidently) drops the toy into the container, say your command simultaneously. We use the words “clean up.” If you clicker train your dog, click as you say the command. Then praise your dog for a job well done.

• Repeat this portion of the exercise (in short spurts, over several days or weeks) until your dog understands that “clean up” means getting a toy, carrying it to the basket and finding a hidden treat inside.

• Once he’s solid on that, stop hiding treats inside the basket. Start handing the dog his treat after he puts away each toy. Then slowly draw that out, offering a treat only after he puts away two toys, etc. Your goal is to get him to put away all of his toys and then get his reward.

Alternative Training Methods

If your dog is already solid on fetch and retrieve, you can build from there.

• Reinforce the basic fetch-and-retrieve exercises.

• Strengthen the “drop it” command when your dog brings the toy/ball to you. Work on linking fetch, retrieve and drop it. Our dogs know they have to drop the toy at our feet for the playtime to continue so they do it automatically.

• Once your dog is clear on the fetch- retrieve-drop exercise, stand behind the chest and toss a toy for your dog to retrieve. When he brings the toy back he should theoretically “drop it” into the chest. Practice this exercise until the dog understands that the toy in the chest equals praise and a treat. While giving praise and treats, say “good clean up” to reinforce your command words.

• When your dog clearly understands he gets a treat when he drops the toy in the chest, move further away from the chest and issue the command. Continue to move away from the toy chest and offer enthusiastic praise when the dog drops a toy into the chest.

You may want to practice variations of this, including pointing to toys and instructing your dog to “clean up.” Your dog should eventually be able to put his toys away with a few simple commands.

Does your dog do his share of the housework? We’re still working on all of this, so I’ll let you know how it goes. Next, I’m going to teach our pups how to mop.

Top photo by lindyi
Middle photo by star5112
Bottom photo by Alden Chadwick

Read more articles by Langley Cornwell

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What’s the Best Motivator for Dogs?

By Linda Cole

Before you can begin to train your dog, you need the right kind of motivation. Some dogs love food more than anything else, some enjoy being stroked/petted, and some will learn a command to play a game of fetch or tug of war. All dogs love to receive praise for doing a good job. But is one reward better than the others when it comes to the best way to motivate your dog?

Over the last several years, I’ve had opportunities to talk with many people who work extensively with dogs. Among them: an officer from the Denver Police Department who works with canines trained to detect explosives; a dock diving dog owner who uses the sport to raise awareness for K9 cancer; and another dog owner who trains his dogs for Schutzhund competitions. Each person emphasized the importance of knowing your dog as an individual to find out what motivates him to learn. Most dogs need more motivation than just praise, and some dogs look forward to playing as a reward after training sessions.

There is a debate among dog trainers concerning the use of treats versus praising as a reward. Some believe giving treats is a form of bribery, and once you start rewarding with food it means if you don’t have a treat the dog will stop obeying commands. On the other end of the debate are trainers who say just petting and praising a dog isn’t as effective of a reward for the majority of dogs.
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DIY Crafts for Dog-Treat Jars

dog-treat-3By Langley Cornwell

When it comes to doggies and their treats, having a custom made jar is almost a requirement; after all, anything as important as a CANIDAE Pure Heaven dog treat must have a special container! How else can we expect our lovable pooches to sit up and beg? Here are some ideas for a DIY handcrafted dog-treat jar:

The first thing you need to do is find a proper container. You want something that you can seal up tight, but that you can easily open and reach into, for those moments when your pooch is doing something especially precious and requires an immediate reward. Your container should be made of glass or plastic so that it will be easy to work with when you start crafting. Glass and plastic take paint and various other things quite well, so those are excellent choices.

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How to Curb Your Dog’s Enthusiasm

By Suzanne Alicie

I had to laugh when I saw this title, because I am owned by the queen of uncontrollable dogs. If someone knocks on the door, Bear will not stop barking until the person is inside and she can smell them, then she might continue barking if she feels like it. She’s not a jumper, but she sure is loud. I could probably work with her to stop this, but she’s an old dog and she’s pretty set in her ways. She isn’t harming anyone and is quite effective as a guard dog letting people know she is in the house and on the job. But not everyone can deal with this behavior in their dog, or perhaps their dog has other instances of boundless excitement and enthusiasm.

If your dog knocks you down racing out the door when you go for a walk or jumps up on guests, you may want to follow some of the advice below. It is important that you have a firm handle on control any time your dog is around people or out in public. A harness and leash does no good if your dog can drag you around willy-nilly as he chooses.

Basic obedience training is almost a must for puppies if you want them to be well behaved. Some people have the time to work with their puppies themselves, but if not then an obedience class will help. Learning basic commands such as sit, stay and quiet are imperative if you wish to control your dog when he gets excited. Whether you do this training at home with a large box of CANIDAE Pure Heaven treats and lots of patience or take your dog to a class, it is very important that he learn basic obedience commands.

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We’d Do Anything for CANIDAE’s Bakery Snacks!

Langley's dog 3By Big Al and Frosty Cornwell, canine correspondents

Big Al:

Wait. I hear something. Yes, there it is – the sound of my favorite cabinet opening! That cabinet has a special squeak that I’ve grown to love. Whenever I hear that squeak, it’s followed by a crumple. The crumple is followed by the sound of my dear human’s voice calling my name. But she doesn’t have to say anything; I’m already right by her side.

I sit before she even asks me to, because she always wants me to be a gentleman. I sit and hit her with my big brown eyes; she’s hopeless when I stare into her eyes with the full force of my brown-eyed sincerity. Sometimes I’ll even give her a dashing tilt of the head, which always makes her smile. This is one of my favorite times of the day.

She’s been giving us CANIDAE Bakery Snacks lately. Wonder if we’ll get the Turkey, Quinoa and Butternut Squash or the Lamb, Wild Rice and Sweet Potato. It doesn’t matter to me, they’re both delicious! I’ve heard her say that she likes these treats because their crunchy texture helps clean my teeth. Honestly, I’m not really worried about my teeth. For me, it’s all about the taste.

I’m not picky about treats, but I know our dear human is. I’d never turn down a treat (or two or three) but I’ve seen my human read labels and I know she’s careful about our treats and our food. I love everything she gives us. I hope she never makes me choose between these new Bakery Snacks and CANIDAE’s Pure Heaven treats or Snap-Biscuits and TidNips, because they’re all my favorites!

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CANIDAE’S New Grain Free Dog Treats are “Pure Heaven!”

By Keikei Cole, canine guest blogger

Holy Mackerel! Correction, I should say yummy duck and salmon. I was going through my daily lessons the other day, not paying close attention to my regular tiny meal (aka my treat) the boss had in her hand. When I heard “Good Girl,” I knew my treat was on its way to my mouth. Imagine my surprise when I discovered a different taste. I noticed a hint of duck as I crunched away. No way! I figured it was my imagination left over from my duck hunting dream. Come to find out, it was one of CANIDAE’s new grain free Pure Heaven dog treats.

I have no idea how the boss finds these great tasting treats, but she does a good job picking out some fine “motivators.” That’s what I call those tiny meals she rewards me with when I do something good. Sometimes I get some just because she loves me! Cool, huh? Anyway, she smiled while I smacked my way through one treat, and then gave me a different one. She said one biscuit was called Pure Heaven Duck and Chickpea, and the other one was Pure Heaven Salmon and Sweet Potato. Is a chickpea related to a duck? Oh wait… I bet that’s what little ducks are called?

Later, I had the boss out for her walk and we ran into my canine buddies Gunner and Eva. The humans were yakking away when all of a sudden the boss pulls out some of MY new CANIDAE treats. Well, I sat immediately. Gunner and Eva took one sniff of the offered treat, and did the same thing. Gunner’s mom was surprised that he snarfed his, because he’s pretty picky about the treats he eats. Later that evening, Gunner sent me a message via doggy grapevine, and said he absolutely loved that treat! So, these new grain free treats must be exceptionally good if Gunner likes them.

The boss says I need to learn how to use my inside voice when we’re outside at night. Hey, I think barking is appropriate anytime I feel a need to speak! But with the right motivators, I’m willing to learn anything. She gave me some of the new treats, and then wanted to know what I thought of them.

Well, I’m a nose gal, and smell is the most important “ingredient” in any quality dog treat or food, in my view. So I asked for another one so I could evaluate it properly. BOL. It crunches nicely, so that must mean the texture is good. And it helps keep my teeth clean, which is a plus from where I sit.

I’m gonna start holding out for the Pure Heaven treats for the advanced lessons the boss wants me to learn. Although just between you and me, there’s no way I’ll turn down a CANIDAE Snap-Biscuit or TidNips motivator either.

Want to know what’s in the new Pure Heaven treats? I didn’t, but the boss told me anyway, and now I can pass it on to you. A little history trivia, since I live with a history nut. One of the first seeds cultivated by early humans was sesame seeds, and they are mentioned in documents going back 3,600 years! That’s a long time, especially in dog years. Sesame seeds are a good source of vitamins and minerals, so that’s why they’re included in the Duck and Chickpea treat. There’s also avocado oil, which is supposed to be healthy, and turmeric, a spice that is thought to help boost the immune system.

The Salmon and Sweet Potato treat includes a superfood called quinoa. It comes from the ancient Incas who lived in the Andes Mountains in Peru. Quinoa is a good source of fiber and protein. There’s also extra virgin olive oil and cinnamon, a super-spice that’s even good for humans to eat. And on top of all the healthy stuff packed inside these tiny meals – they are made right here in the U.S.A. Man, it makes my mouth water just thinking about them. I think it’s time for a training session!

So my fellow canines, don’t be afraid to ask for the best and tastiest noms you can get. The Pure Heaven grain free dog treats are yummy motivators, and they’re really healthy. These tasty biscuits are aptly named too – because they are pure heaven!

Read more articles by Keikei’s “boss,” Linda Cole