My dog steals food or my things

It happens to the best of us at some point – you turn your back for one minute and your lunch or gloves are gone!

If your dog does like to help himself, it’s time to invest in some obedience training to keep his attention on you and reinforce him not stealing your things with a greater reward. Your dog steals because doing so feels good; perhaps that’s because your lunch tasted so good, or because he loved the chase game when you were trying to get your gloves back. A dog will repeat any action that brings a rewarding experience.

Instead of relying on shouting, you will need to teach your dog to “Leave” items and to focus on his own play things.  Many owners find it helpful to use clicker training to help them to reinforce good behaviour. Clicker training has been used successfully for many years across a variety of different animal species. The introduction of clicker training provided a means to train more efficiently, even when at a distance from the animal.  This leads to faster results and more accuracy.  The Basic Command Kit has all you need to get you started including a step by step training guide to help teach you how to train your dog the sit, down, bed and leave commands.  The kit includes the essential items required to train these commands including a long line, treat pouch and clikka.

Check out our Basic Command Clicker Training guide HERE. Achieving the “leave” command will help you train your dog to respect your things and only chew or eat his own!

Make sure that you provide your dog with several toys to play with and don’t forget to praise and encourage him whenever he focuses on them. Many owners make the mistake of assuming the dog will play independently but in reality it is very important to spend time teaching him to play. Your dog will probably love the BehaveRite range of toys where treats can be pushed inside since these take time to work on and provide the rewards he loves.

In some extreme cases, the use of Training Discs can also be helpful in interrupting a bad stealing habit. It is vital that you replace his attention onto something more rewarding, like playing with you or receiving a treat.  Check out our Training Discs step by step guide HERE.

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