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Many of us are used to having our canine companions appear from nowhere to intently stare at us at the slightest notion there maybe food around. However, it is worth remembering before your beloved pet expertly manipulates you to hand over most of your food, the reasons that they do this.
Begging is a behaviour that dogs learn, because often we find them too lovely to refuse and happily share our favourite snacks. This means that we are inadvertently rewarding them for begging! Most of the time dogs aren’t even hungry when they beg, they just like being rewarded by you.
So, before you feel mean for not sharing your food with your dog, remember they do not beg because they really want your snack, but more for the rewarding interaction with you.
Why not swap the rewarding of begging behaviour to teaching your dog that other good behaviours will be rewarded instead? Remember that rewards do not have to be food, and that any positive interaction with your dog is rewarding – such as fuss and cuddles or playing together.