Have you read the ingredient list in commercial dog treats?
Have you smelled those commercial dog treats?!
Many of the popular dog treats found in grocery stores are (1) expensive, (2) filled with preservatives and by-products, and (3) smell just horrible. Yet, many of my clients still want to feed their dogs these ick-laden things to their dogs (and expect their dogs to remain focused and happy to work, even in the face of distractions).
Would you eat one of your dog’s treats?
And more importantly, would you enjoy it? I doubt it. [Yes, I know. Dogs love a lot of things we don’t find appealing.] My point is still: people food is a really good choice for dog training treats.
Concerns About People Food
My dog will beg for food if I feed her people food.
- Not even close. Dogs don’t beg at the table because of people food. Dogs beg at the table because they’ve been fed at the table! The begging is more closely related to WHERE the food comes from than WHAT KIND of food your dog is eating. In other words, if you fed your dog his own kibble from the table, your dog’s going to beg for his food at the table.
Dog treats are healthier for my dog.
- Take a look at the ingredient list below for T-Bonz. I think plain chicken breasts are a lot healthier.
It’s expensive to feed people food.
- It’s a lot cheaper to feed human-grade food to your dog. See below.
T-Bonz is a dog treat from Purina. If you shop at Target, you can pick up a 45 oz. bag of T-Bonz for $10.99. That’s $0.24 per ounce or $3.90 per pound.
Chicken breasts, also from Target, run $7.19 for 40 ounces. That’s about $0.18 an ounce. That’s almost $1 a pound cheaper than dog treats!
Still not convinced? No problem.
Chicken breast ingredients: chicken, salt
T-Bonz ingredients: Ground wheat, corn gluten meal, water, wheat flour, ground yellow corn, sugar, glycerin, beef, chicken by-product meal, hydrogenated starch hydrolysate, corn starch-modified, liver, soybean meal, salt, bacon fat preserved with BHA, natural and artificial flavors, added color (Red 40 and other color), phosphoric acid, dried whey, sorbic acid (a preservative), gelatin, animal digest, natural porterhouse steak flavor, calcium propionate (a preservative), soy protein isolate, BHA (a preservative), citric acid. I-4258
Yeah, clearly chicken’s the winner here no matter which way you look at it. It’s healthier, it’s more economical, and you can eat it!
Other People-Food Choices
- Cheese (buy a big block of cheese and cut it into hundreds of tiny pieces — this is super inexpensive!)
- Hot dogs (dice them and then microwave — paper plate lined with paper towel, lay hot dogs in single layer, cover with paper towel, microwave until dried out. Keep an eye on them so they don’t burn!)
- Pepperoni, summer sausage, kielbasa
- Luncheon meat (bologna dices nicely)
- Spam or Treet
- Leftovers from the grill (pork chops, steak, chicken, salmon, whatever!)
Make your dog (and dog trainer!) happy, bring tiny, pea-sized pieces of chopped people food to your dog training classes for your dog. And you, too — if you skipped dinner, just reach into the treat pouch and grab a handful for yourself!