Stop your dog begging for food – transcript

Hi my name is Ali and I'm a Canine Behaviourist and Training Advisor here at Battersea and today, I'm going to show you how to stop your dog begging for food 

Begging for food is a very common behaviour in dogs as a lot of them are highly food motivated 

However, this behaviour is also often reinforced by us as owners, as it's easy to feel guilty when faced with those signature puppy-dog eyes 

If you do want to discourage your dog from begging for food though consistency is key 

If you're bringing a dog into your family from a young age it's ideal to help them form good habits from the start 

This way, you should be able to avoid begging becoming an issue 

In order to do this, make it a rule that your dog is never given food from the table, the sofa or anywhere else that you would eat  

It's important that everyone in the household is on board with this 

If a dog is given food even once it becomes far more difficult to discourage this behaviour in the future 

A dog won't understand the meaning of "Just this once" but will instead learn that their persistence will be rewarded 

It can be tempting to give in but you need to be consistent  

If your dog already begs, or has picked up the habit then we need to show them the behaviour no longer works 

To do this, try your best to ignore them completely whenever they beg 

This means not looking at them or talking to them even to tell them to stop begging until you've finished eating 

A slight glance in their direction can encourage them to keep trying as they're getting a response from you 

But if their begging is never successful they will eventually give up 

This will take a lot of time and patience but your consistency will be rewarded  

If your dog is keen to learn you can teach them a different behaviour as an alternative to begging 

A good starting point is to teach your dog to go lie down and settle in a specific place such as their bed or a mat 

Information on how to teach a dog to go to their bed and to settle more generally can be found on our YouTube channel 

Once they know the cue to go to bed or settle you can ask them to do this whenever you're sitting down to eat 

If your dog is motivated by food then it's a good idea to use their own food to distract them from yours 

For example, routine is great for your dog so you could get into the habit of giving them their meals at the same time you are due to eat 

To keep them occupied for longer you could put their food in a slow-feeder or a long-lasting enrichment toy, like a Kong 

If your dog is begging for snacks outside of mealtimes you could give them a treat or a chew and ask them to settle in their bed 

Your dog will be less likely to beg for your food if they have their own long-lasting treat or meal to keep them occupied while you are eating 

Remember, if you're giving your dog treats during the day you should adjust the amount of food you're giving them at mealtimes to avoid overfeeding 

Those are our tips on how to teach your dog to not beg for food 

If you'd like to learn more about how to teach your dog the Battersea Way visit our website, follow our channels and hit the subscribe button on our YouTube channel.