When you’re training your dog to do tricks or obey commands, it’s helpful to use dog treats as a reward and incentive to obtain the desired behaviors. While this is a common practice, did you know that there are certain treats that can actually make your dog sick if he eats too many of them? Not all dog treats are created with the same formulation. This is why it’s so important to make sure that the dog treats you use are safe and contain only healthy and nutritious ingredients. We’ve done the research to find the healthiest and safest treats that your dog will love, that will result in success.
Which dog treats are the best and why?
Your dog has a discerning sense of smell and taste and not just any dog treat will be enjoyable. Some of them taste terrible, so it’s important that the offering is tasty. The best way to discover which treats your dog likes is to buy a variety of them and choose 5 different flavors. Even if your pet likes the treats, after a while, he may grow bored or tired of the same treat. You will have the greatest success in training your dog with the five healthiest treats on the market today.
Considerations for choosing dog treats
Each dog may have a particular preference when it comes to flavor. The main considerations when making your choice are to choose treats that have variations in texture. Texture types include wet, dry, semi-moist, jerky, and freeze-dried. Make sure that it includes some type of protein. Good choices are peanut butter, fish, beef pork, poultry, or lamb. Also look for training treats that are small in size, about the size of a large pea. Some larger treats are easy to break into smaller pieces. do a taste test with your pet and keep track of the treats that he likes the most.
Assign a value to the treats
There are three kinds of treats. There are high value, medium value, and low value. The high-value treats are the moist kind or freeze-dried. They’re the most special that your dog loves. These are given when the stakes are high for training and goal accomplishment. They’re used when introducing a new behavior or when the dog is in a distracting environment or for exceptional performance.
The medium value treats are generally those that contain special ingredients that aren’t included in daily food. They’re usually semi-moist or dry in texture. These treats are given when you’re reinforcing behaviors that have already been learned or when there is a mild distraction in the environment. Low-value treats are those that are lower in calories and are generally dry and crunchy types. These are used when you are fading out treats as rewards for desired behaviors in training.
Things to avoid in pet treats
There are some pet treats that include ingredients that can be unhealthy or even harmful if they eat too much. Avoid treats with fillers, fat, salt, corn fillers, and preservatives. Go for healthy treats that include vegetables, and meat or peanut butter protein sources.
Here are the five best dog treats for successful training.
1. Greenies Fresh Natural Dental Dog Treats
Greenies are natural dog treats that are made in the shape of bones but in a small size. They’re ideal for training and they contain dry ingredients that help to remove plaque from the teeth to encourage good dental health. These treats have a unique texture that cleans to the gumline and they also help to freshen your dog’s breath. The ingredients are natural and easy for most dogs to digest and they are also nutritious.
2. Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets Dog Treats
These are ideal training treats for all dog breeds. They are available in a variety of different flavors including Brown Rice and Lamb, Potato and Duck, Sweet Potato and Bison, Sweet Potato and Chicken, Sweet Potato and Fish, and Sweet Potato and Venison. These treats are made in the shape of dog biscuits and they provide a crunchy texture and delicious taste. They include no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives, they are grain-free, and they support digestive health.
3. Wellness Natural Grain Free Puppy Training Treats
These treats are for dogs at all life stages and all breeds. There are two different types including Soft Lamb and Salmon, and Crunchy Chicken and Carrots. They are small-sized treats made with premium lamb and salmon meat or premium chicken meat, depending on the variety that you choose. When you opt for the salmon variety they are soft and tasty and ideal for training. The chicken and carrot types are crunchy. They are made of all-natural ingredients with no corn, soy, artificial colors, or flavors and they are made in the USA with globally sourced ingredients.
4. Rocco & Roxie Gourmet Jerky Dog Treats
These treats are tender jerky type training treats. They are made of slow-roasted meats and you have a flavor choice of beef, chicken, or turkey. They are healthy dog treats that are recommended for puppies and smaller dog breeds. The ingredients are all-natural and made of premium meats. There is no artificial flavoring, corn, soy, or gluten fillers. The treats come in stick form and they’re easy to break off. The sticks will not leave a greasy or sticky residue on your hands. They smell like beef jerky.
5. Natural Balance Mini Rewards Dog Treats
these treats are available in three different flavors including lamb, chicken, or duck. Each treat contains less than 5 calories and it features a meaty taste with a chewy texture. They are suitable for all dog breeds and all life stages. There is no wheat or corn fillers, no preservatives, or artificial colors or flavors.
The most successful dog treats are those that your dog loves, but his favorites should only be given in special circumstances for the most effective training. It’s good to have several different kinds available to change it up and to offer special treats for outstanding performance and unique circumstances, medium value treats for less high stakes training and low value treats for reinforcement. Every treat you give your pet should be healthy and free of potentially unhealthy ingredients for successful training and the continued good health of your pet.