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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So I went to my first people orientation training class on Saturday. No dogs at this first group class. Boomer (8mo) and I (1st time owner) will go next week to start his 'family dog' class.

The trainer gave everyone a list of things to bring and one was "plenty of soft dog treats in three verities/flavors".

Up to now I have been boiling chicken thighs and cutting them into small pieces for training. Boomer loves it, they are small and also low in calories. However, the only issue is that they are greasy. At home I don't mind and just wash my hands when we are done.

I have treat bag for class. I cant really see dumping slimy/greasy chicken into it and then trying to clean it afterwards. Also having to wipe my hands the whole time at our class seems annoying.

I've looked at some some treats in Walmart in the past and saw they are usually tiny little bags of soft treats for like $5. We would blow through that in 15 mins and it would probably be way more then his meal calories allow even if I substitute the whole thing out.

Any recommendations (w/ links) for bulk low calories small soft treats?
There will be six classes and I am sure we're gonna need a lot.

Thanks
 

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For grimy hands after class, try baby wipes. I typically don't clean my hands during class.

For treats, I've been making tuna/salmon fudge, turkey loaf, or combining the two, or buying lunch meat ends and hot dogs. Cheese is nice if your dog can tolerate it. I don't worry too much about calories since I can adjust food on other days and use kibble for most of our training at home.

Yeah, store bought treats aren't really cost effective. I can go through a bag in one class (maybe more than one bag depending on the class). They are nice to have around and a good emergency backup if you run out during class.
 

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String cheese is a great reward. Cut the stick into slices and cut the slices into halves or quarters.

I used Pet Botanics training treats http://www.petsmart.com/food-health/training-treats/pet-botanics-mini-training-rewards-dog-treats-zid36-4239/cat-36-catid-100053?var_id=36-4239&_t=pfm=search They come in 200 - 550 treats to a bag and they are small enough to not be a meal. (Small size usually goes on sale and comes out cheaper then the large size with a little more treats)

I also used Old Mother Hubbard mini treats http://www.petsmart.com/food-health/biscuits-bakery/old-mother-hubbard-p-nuttier-dog-biscuits-zid36-4670/cat-36-catid-100048?var_id=36-4670&_t=pfm=search cut into 2. They are small and crunchy. I would get them at Tractor Supply on sale and they tend to be cheaper there as well not on sale. http://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/old-mother-hubbard-p-nuttier-oven-baked-dog-biscuits-mini-bones?cm_vc=-10005 or even Chewy http://www.chewy.com/dog/old-mother-hubbard-classic-p-nuttier/dp/36305

When I did a training class with Zoey, it was an hour a week and I probably went through maybe 30 treats. If you are concerned about it maybe pick up small kibble (maybe get a sample) and use that. I swear that I could use Annamaet kibble as a training treat as it is tiny vs the Farmina kibble that I buy. I never used kibble as I felt the treats were extra special.
 

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Chicken breast and pork loin are not greasy if you want to stick to meat.
String cheese comes in a handy wrapper.
I just made up tuna bread and it is so nice to work with after using melted string cheese in warm weather. Basically tuna fudge but I make into a pizza crust sort of thing, run a pizza cutter through it to make sticks and only bake it until the dough is set.
For emergencies make a microwaved cheese sandwich. Squish the soft bread flat and cut into sticks so you can pinch off little bits.

Baby wipes after class are terrific, I only thought of that after decades of driving home with disgusting hands.
You can tie a rag to your bait bag or pant belt loop for class as well. That thought came to me after the baby wipes one.

Ginger went to her first class fat and on a diet. In class she ate double her usual amount of food and I had to feed her before class or she couldn't settle down. That's 3 days worth of food in one day! Didn't affect her weight loss at all, she continued to lose weight. You will find out if all those treats are too much food or not. If it is too much and he has soft stool then reduce the following meal if he is like Ginger and does poorly in class when hungry or the previous meal if he pays more attention when he is getting treats in class.
 

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I like a trail mix for class. A sandwich bag of mostly kibble plus about 15% soft treats like Zukes and 15% smelly human foods like tny hot dog bits or cheese bits. The kibble soaks up the smell of the more flavorful treats and the random variation of value tends to keep the dog encouraged to work in the chance of getting an extra yummy treat.

a Natural Balance roll cut into tiny pieces is a soft, smelly but nutritionally balanced treat so it can act as a meal replacement.

For a food motivated dog, having 3 flavors is kind of pointless IMO. If the treat is of decent interest, the dog will gulp it down without caring if its beef or fish or chicken. Usually a high value treat like meat or cheese and a lower value treat like dry food will cover your needs.

Using a different kibble as a treat also works for many food motivated dogs. Fish is usually a good choice since most foods are chicken based and fish smells more, so that kibble ends up seeming more exciting.
 

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When we are in classes we typically skip dinner and just sub in all the treats they are going to eat. Shouldn't have to be as concerned with your calories then ;)

I second Pet Botanics. I forget the brand, but the place we take classes at also has a store (and a vending machine) with treats that my dogs went nuts for. Unless the class is super strict about it though, making tiny chicken treats or hot dog treats is fine.
 

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Unless your dog is *very* food motivated, you really want to use the slimy soft treats in class. Dry treats are usually lower value for most dogs, and in a distracting class environment, they might not be enough to hold his attention.

As someone has already mentioned, carry hand wipes with you to class. I usually resign to slimy hands and only wipe my hands at the end of the class, before touching the steering wheel. I also wear pants I don't care much about so I can always wipe my hands on my pants if I need to.

For your treat pouch, use zip lock bags to put the treats in. The only treats I put directly in my treat pouch, are dry ones. Everything else goes in a zip lock bag. That way I can freeze my treats in little bags too, and just pull a bag out of the freezer when I need it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks all. Good ideas. I can deal with some slime but was just looking for any easier way. Cut up string cheese will work for Boomer. Maybe cut up hot dogs too?

Actually last night I made some stuff he loved. I de-boned a chicken thigh and put it in my blendtec blender with whole oats. Added canned chicken broth to wet it and ground it into a paste. Spread it on a cookie sheet, cooked for 20m and cut into little pieces.

They are still soft this morning and he's going crazy for them!
 

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My dog is super food motivated so I usually have two separate pockets of treats. One side (the easier side for me to grab usually) is filled with her regular ol' kibble. She doesn't have supper so she's decently hungry for it and will perform. You have a lab puppy (what it looks like from the pictures) so I assume he's pretty food motivated to begin with so I don't think you have to get too fancy.

In the other pocket I have cut up little cubes of cheese and little thin slices of hot dogs. They're not gross to handle, hot dog smells really strong so whether she's getting a huge piece or not, the smell is motivational enough for her. I used these when she was having difficulty following me, losing interest in me, or if she did something particularly great.
 
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