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My 8 week old Vizsla puppy (male) seems to lose interest in training to "Leave It" if he is not hungry. Just wondering about the forum members' thoughts on training him before dinner when he's hungry, and I've obviously got his attention.

Thanks.
 

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Well I know its done(I was even told not to feed my pup before Puppy class to keep him motivated ).... Not sure about the ethics, unless you consider that its for his "greater" good....
 

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I fail to see what's unethical or unfair about training a puppy or dog when he's most likely to be interested. There's nothing inherently fair about feeding a dog from a bowl. It's just something we're all used to. The dog still gets fed in training (or from a toy, etc.), it's not like you're withholding food.

I get "oh, that's mean" a lot when people find out I feed Kabota either through training or a puzzle toy. When I ask why it's mean, I don't get an answer, other than "well, bowls, you know".
 

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Leave It!

Yeah, a lot of us are "cruel" enough to train before or with dinner :) Unless you've got a really really food motivated dog, it is hard to use food as a reward when they have eaten a meal. If you do have a really food motivated dog, then using food after a meal just means extra unneeded calories.


 

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in my opinion its completely fair, ethical, and above all important to train leave it, as well as drop it when the dog is hungry. if your dog snatches or snatches at something toxic its important to be able to effectively cease the action before he swallows and it becomes an expensive vet visit or even simpler still your dog is hungry a fresh french fry straight out of the deep fryer hits the floor. he needs to be able to leave it for his safety. a burn like that can lead to secondary infections not to mention the pain and discomfort your poor dog would suffer just because he only learned to leave it when he wasn't hungry. the fact that it can facilitate training for food based rewards is a bonus. I am not saying starve your dog before training, rather work your training to be effective at all times. aka train when its going to be the most effective, the food based rewards are going to be most effective when your dog is hungry so train with them before dinner ( and the urges to go for food based lures and bait for strengthening your commands is stronger) its easy for a full dog to ignore that dog biscut and you think you have a solid command, false security if you will, try it when he is hungry and watch his resolve weaken and your command strength plummet. also if you are going to train after meals train with life rewards such as play or toys when he is not going to be motivated by foods. keep it creative and fun for the dog.
 

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I would also like to add that an often overlooked part of leave it, is liquids. sure the dog gets leave it on things that hit the floor foods etc. I make sure to cross train this to puddles and buckets. I like to do a lot of mechanical work on my own vehicles so anti freeze can be present, we all know how toxic it can be to dogs, even small amounts found in that mudpuddle found while crossing the parking lot could make your dog ill, so as a buffer when I know my dog is thirsty (I do not remove his normal access to his water dish its always available). I will use random dishes with water in it and make them leave that, and only re enforce going to their water dish. you might ask can this be problematic if I am at a freinds house and they try to use a random dish to give him water? not so far lacking the command they treat it like its their dish. I use every mud puddle as a chance to practice leaving liquids while on walks. I dont know whats in them and if I wont drink it I prefer not to let my dog drink it. at this point my dogs dont seem to view puddles as drinking water anymore. just dishes and I have had to stop my dog from getting their head into the anti freeze bucket. it smells awesome to dogs and taste better.
bit of a disclaimer here. every effort should be made to reduce accidental exposure I am diligent on cleanup when working with stuff that is potentially harmfull to animals and you should never rely on a command to prevent what diligence in clean up can prevent because you cant always give the command in time.
 

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I like to think that I'm fairly soft-hearted and I very often use Katie's dinner as training treats even though she's super food motivated. I don't think it's cruel or unethical in any way.

I would also like to add that an often overlooked part of leave it, is liquids. sure the dog gets leave it on things that hit the floor foods etc. I make sure to cross train this to puddles and buckets. I like to do a lot of mechanical work on my own vehicles so anti freeze can be present, we all know how toxic it can be to dogs, even small amounts found in that mudpuddle found while crossing the parking lot could make your dog ill, so as a buffer when I know my dog is thirsty (I do not remove his normal access to his water dish its always available). I will use random dishes with water in it and make them leave that, and only re enforce going to their water dish. you might ask can this be problematic if I am at a freinds house and they try to use a random dish to give him water? not so far lacking the command they treat it like its their dish. I use every mud puddle as a chance to practice leaving liquids while on walks. I dont know whats in them and if I wont drink it I prefer not to let my dog drink it. at this point my dogs dont seem to view puddles as drinking water anymore. just dishes and I have had to stop my dog from getting their head into the anti freeze bucket. it smells awesome to dogs and taste better.
bit of a disclaimer here. every effort should be made to reduce accidental exposure I am diligent on cleanup when working with stuff that is potentially harmfull to animals and you should never rely on a command to prevent what diligence in clean up can prevent because you cant always give the command in time.
Great suggestion! Katie likes to try drinking from every spot of liquid she finds, so we're working on transferring "leave it" from solids to liquids.
 

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Manna isn't good enough to let me spell things out of the floor yet but I do make her
-look at me
-sit
-then leave it until I release her...(not very good at this last step yet)
Yep, we do the same thing with Daisy. It's a good bit of training reminder every day, and is something important for keeping her from immediately wolfing down anything that might fall off the kitchen counter.
 
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