4 min read

Top Training Treats for Puppies

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Overview

New puppy parents quickly discover that their new fur baby doesn’t always arrive with paw-rfect manners. They chew things that aren’t theirs, and they have no idea what “sit” and “stay” mean. Arguably worst of all, they don’t know that their bathroom is outside. All of these things and more are behaviors that pups need to learn or un-learn when they’re very young, and their home is their classroom. 

If you’re new to pup parenting, you may wonder what the best way to train your puppy is. There are several methods for dog training, including positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcements can be praise, petting and back scratching, or a morsel of food. Because most puppies are interested in food, training treats are highly effective for helping your pooch learn new skills. 

Since there are so many pet treat choices, finding the right one can be tough. To help, we’ve narrowed down the field to some of the best ones. But first, let’s explore some puppy training treat tips to get your pup training started!


What treats are best for training puppies?

Training treats are a little different from dental chews and biscuits in that they’re specially formulated for smell and flavor to keep your fur baby interested and coming back for more. Some other characteristics to look for in training treats include:

  • Size: Training treats should be small and easy to swallow.
  • Texture: The best training treats are soft and don’t require much chewing, which can slow down training and are better for teething puppies. Crunchy treats are better for skills that take a little longer to perform, like “stay.” 
  • Taste: Tasty treats are more successful at keeping a puppy’s interest.
  • Ingredients: High quality protein (meat or fish) should be the first ingredient on the label, followed by real foods such as vegetables and fruits. Avoid ingredients like wheat, corn, soy, dairy products, and artificial colors and preservatives that can cause food sensitivity or allergies in some pups. 
  • Fatty acids: DHA can improve a pup’s coat, skin, and cognitive development. Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids also lower inflammation and improve cardiovascular health.
  • Nutritional values: Training treats should be lower in calories and fat.
  • Origin: Treats should be made in the U.S.A. to ensure freshness and quality controls with ingredients.


Treats also shouldn’t total more than 10% of your dog’s total daily calories, so always be aware how much they eat in each training session. To help you get started on your training adventure, check out our top choices for puppy training treats below!


yellow labrador retriever puppy lying down on floor to eat a training treat

Wellness Soft Puppy Bites

These tidbits are soft and chewable and can be broken into smaller pieces. They contain no wheat, corn, or dairy products, but they do contain healthy DHA and Omega-3s. Specially formulated in the U.S. for puppies, they offer pure meat protein, fruits, vegetables. Aromatic lamb and salmon flavors make them appealing to any fur baby, and they have only six calories per treat, so they won’t make your puppy roly-poly.


Riley’s Organic Dog Treats

Each puppy-sized treat contains six calories, and only six ingredients: sweet potato, oat flour, oats, peanut flour, coconut oil, and cinnamon. All ingredients are human grade and organic, and there’s no added salt, sugar, or artificial colors or flavors. These are truly healthy morsels that won’t undo the benefits of a good diet and are crunchy, which makes them useful for skills like sit and stay that need the pup to stay put for a few seconds. The crunchiness also promotes good dental health. Riley’s treats are made in the U.S.A.


Purina Puppy Chow Healthy Start Salmon Flavor Training Dog Treats

The first ingredient in these tasty morsels is salmon. They’re soft, easy to chew and swallow, and can be broken into smaller pieces. Each treat has only three calories, and their flavor and aroma are pup-luscious. Containing DHA for healthy skin, coat, and brain development, these treats will grab your fur baby’s interest and hold onto it. While they do contain some wheat and soy, there are no artificial flavorings, colors, or preservatives, and they are vitamin and mineral powerhouses to keep your pooch looking and feeling their best. Purina products, including these treats, are made in the U.S.


Zuke’s Mini Natural Dog Treats

These treats are really tiny, and they come in a variety of flavors, including chicken, salmon and lamb. The manufacturer uses real meat, so you won’t find any by-products or fillers here. They are also corn, wheat, and soy free. These moist and chewy tidbits contain less than three calories, and they’re made in the U.S.A. without artificial preservatives, colors, or flavoring. Best of all, they’re smelly and tasty to keep your pup’s attention.


Pupford Freeze-Dried Training Treats

The pup-licious aroma of U.S.-made Pupford treats is tailor-made to attract young fur babies and keep their attention as you put them through their paces. With less than one calorie each, these furtastic morsels contain minimal ingredients: meat and a natural antioxidant to preserve freshness. There are more than 475 treats in each package at only $.03 apiece, so they’re economical and you won’t run out in the middle of a training session. Their non-crumble recipe helps keep your pockets clear of crumbs too, but the chewiness is definitely for older puppies who don't have sensitive teething gums.


Blue Buffalo Blue Bits Soft-Moist Training Treats

The name says it all: these are soft and moist tidbits that are breakable, so you can customize them for your tiniest doggo. Each heart-shaped morsel contains about four calories, and their pup-pealing scent will keep your fur baby coming back for more. They’re also loaded with Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids to combat inflammation and improve heart health, and brown rice, oatmeal, and flaxseed to boost fiber and antioxidants for well-balanced health. You’ll find no meat by-products, corn, wheat, soy, or anything artificial in these delicious bits that come in chicken and other dog-licious flavors. Made in the U.S., Blue Buffalo Blue Bits will make training easy for you and fun for your puppy!


There’s no need to choose just one of these training treats – keep them all in the training rotation so your pooch will stay intrigued. If they have a favorite, consider putting these aside to use when a high-value treat is needed. Sticking with treats that have no wheat, soy, corn or artificial flavors, dyes or colors will give you peace of mind knowing your puppy is protected from most food sensitivities and allergies.

Got more questions about your new furiend? Chat with a vet expert now if you have concerns about your puppy’s health.



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