Kong toys have been around for a long time. They were created by a dog owner whose dog would not stop chewing on things around the house. The story goes, while working on a car one day, the dog was eating rocks and sticks and things that could cause him harm. As his owner was tossing out car parts in frustration, the dog ran over to a part made of rubber and started chewing on it. This particular car part was the inspiration for their first Kong dog toy. The founder of Kong created a durable rubber toy for dogs to play with to ease that need for chewing. A bonus that wasn't often found in other toys was the ability to hide food inside a toy so the dog could work, play, and be rewarded while the owners were busy doing other things. Kong toys bounce, hide treats, and are made of a durable rubber that will last for a long time.
Some dogs look at Kongs and wonder what they are supposed to do with them. Other dogs have their owners shake the treats out of the Kong toys, making the Kong a toy for the owner and not for the dog. Training your dog to love and play with his Kong is really a matter of teaching him what it is and how valuable it will be for his day-to-day life. Making the commitment by hiding lots of goodies in it, especially at first, is one way to introduce the Kong into your dog's world. Puppies will especially enjoy the rubbery texture as they go through their baby teeth. Keeping your dog from chewing on everything you own can be helped by teaching your dog how to use a Kong. Kongs are toys, chores, entertainment, and rewards built into one, so make it fun for your dog, and he will want to play with his Kong all the time.
To get started, you will need a Kong toy that is an appropriate size for your dog. Keep in mind if you have a larger breed dog who is growing, you may need to start with a small one when your dog is a puppy and grow into a larger size as your dog grows. You will also need some treats to put inside the Kong. If your dog is not eager to play with the Kong right off the bat with regular treats, you may want to have high-value treats such as yogurt, nut butter, and peanut butter on hand to scoop inside the Kong. Have some time set aside to help train your dog to play with his Kong so he understands what it is and how it can benefit him. Have patience and don't leave the Kong out all the time while he is learning to play with it, or it could become another lost toy with no interest.
After using the Kong is supposed to remove the toy from the dog?
Hello, If he is staying interested in the toy, you can leave it with him because him being interested in it and choosing to chew on it on his own is the goal. If pup is ignoring the toy and it's just lying around untouched, remove it between the times when you stuff it with food and play with it with him to make it more special when you do give it - until he begins staying interested in it more often, then you can leave it with him more. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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Rose is a rescue & shows major signs of Separation Anxiety when we leave her alone in our backyard, even for very short periods of time. She barks like she’s crying out. I’ve tried A Kong, she shows no interest. I’ve tried a shuffle mat, only worked the first couple of times for a very short time. We’ve tried leaving her for very short & varying intervals, still the same reaction. She has become particularly attached to my husband & looks for him the moment he leaves the room. Any other ideas for us please? We love her to pieces and exercise her twice a day. She very social with both other dogs and people. Help! Please
Hello Gabriella, The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open - similar to a Place command. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Distance Down-Stay using a long leash: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Second, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark While she is outside during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 2 minutes outside, open the door and sprinkle some treats on the ground, then leave again. As she improves, only give the treats every 5 minutes, then 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hours. Work up to her being outside when the weather is nice and it's safe to do so 1-2 hours each day that you can. Whenever she cries, open the door and tell her "Quiet" one time. If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats outside after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side when you open the door while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Another option is to high a trainer who specializes in behavior issues and is very knowledgeable about e-collars and use a low level, "Working level" stimulation based e-collar when she barks (in combination with rewards when she is quiet) so that you don't have to give her additional attention by opening to door to correct. This should be done on her working level - which is the lowest level that your particular dog indicates they feel the collar on while calm - and is determined ahead of time while you are in the room and things are calm. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. Make sure you are also working on adding structure and building her independence through the commands and structure mentioned at the beginning of my comment as well though for the training to be effective. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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