It’s not new or surprising that our little canines love treats. And, as pet parents, there might have been one too many times where you’ve succumbed to the puppy eyes and given your little one a treat. Treats are the token of love, and it’s your pups preferred ‘love language’ that makes them feel appreciated, and like they’ve done a good job. But there are a lot of treats out there that might make your shopping trip a bit more complex. You have to decide between healthy and unhealthy treats, all-natural or processed, hard vs soft treats.
We know how hard and confusing it can be to walk down the pet aisle and feel overwhelmed. And, we’ve got the list that’ll put an end to your Battle of the Treats dilemma so you can feel confident in choosing the right treat for your pup next time you’re out shopping.
Hard Dog Treats
Hard dog treats are slow eating treats that let your pup take their time in finishing the treat. These are normally long-lasting so it can take several hours for your pup to finish the entire treat depending on how long they chew. Think of hard dog treats as a delayed gratification reward, they might take longer to finish but every last bite makes it worthwhile.
When to Give Your Pup Hard Treats
There’s a right time for everything, even when giving your hard dog treats. You want to give your pup the right treat that will result in the right behavior at the right time. Hard dog treats are great for occasions where you need your pup to focus on a single activity for a long period of time.
Crate training, Work From Home Meetings, Day Outings are activities that require your pet to behave a certain way for a long time, and hard dog treats keep their attention focused for that while. Essentially, you want your place the way you left it. The way to ensure this is to give your pup a hard dog treat before you leave the house and since dogs are natural chewers that can chew one thing for hours, the treat will keep your pup occupied until you get home.
Hard dog treats are also great for teething pups. The chewing relieves their discomfort in the gums, and distracts them from the painful process of new teeth coming in.
Benefits of Hard Dog Treats
Apart from keeping your little one occupied for lengthy periods of time, hard dog treats also have a lot of health benefits. They keep your pups jaw and teeth powerful because the constant chewing works out their facial muscles. Moreover, they keep plaque and tartar at bay.
Normally, vets recommended that you brush your pups teeth twice a week for proper dental care which can sometimes be hard to do so with your busy day-to-day schedule. The other option is professional cleaning which can be quite expensive depending on where you live.
However, leaving your dogs teeth unbrushed for a long time can cause serious dental diseases to form. When leftover food particles stuck in between your dog’s teeth and saliva mix, they form plaque. Plaque is hard to spot with naked, so when left unattended, they build tartar and cause dental diseases which can be very painful, and in rare cases, lead to premature death. Even after thorough cleaning, plaque can form again within 24 hours. Hard dog treats ensure that your pups teeth remain clean, ensure fresh breath, and prevent the form of plaque in between brushing in addition to keeping your pups teeth strong and disease-free.
What To Avoid
Not all hard dog treats are made the same, and it’s important to avoid certain types of hard dog treats like rawhides and paddy whacks that claim to be “good and healthy” for your pets when, in reality, these are bad dog treats that pose a serious risk to your pups health. These treats are the opposite of healthy treats - they don’t contain any nutritional benefits and are considered a choking hazard. Their surface can be painful and hard to penetrate for your pups teeth, and the applied pressure can lead to broken teeth and swollen gums.
Best Hard Dog Treats
The best hard dog treats are ones that are not too hard but just right that they loosen up with the moisture from the saliva while giving a pleasurable feeling to your little one. You also want to choose one with high quality ingredients that promote good health. Dogsee Hard Bars are excellent hard dog treats that are long-lasting and contain special enzymes that promote good dental hygiene and keep the diseases at bay. The best part is that when you feed your dog these all-natural and preservative-free treats, you won’t have to worry about toxic chemicals entering your pups body.
Soft Dog Treats
If hard dog treats are the face of delayed gratification reward, soft dog treats are for immediate gratification. They are fast eating treats that you give your dog for a job well done, and to keep them interested with your activity or command. They’re also great to give just as a quick reward when you want to give your pup a little extra love.
When to Give Your Pup Soft Treats
Soft dog treats, when used at the right time, can give you the desired behavior you want your pup to exhibit. These are great for training, when you want to have a peaceful meal and get your dog to stop begging, and for reinforcing or introducing a new behavior. These treats are bite-sized so you can grab a handful of them or even just one to give to your pup to say “great job” and keep them motivated and interested when you’re working through a series of commands.
Because they are bite-sized, when you give your pup a soft dog treat at the end of a well-executed behavior, your pups brain instantly registers the behavior in the positive category and helps the behavior to stick long-term. So, when you’re going through a series of commands, the higher the reinforcement after every command, the faster your pup will master the command.
Benefits of Soft Dog Treats
What’s great about soft dog treats is that they can come with a variety of health benefits depending on the ingredients. You have freeze-dried, bite-sized training treats, and even soft dog chews for senior dogs that help build immunity, improve dental hygiene, aid with weight management, help in the formulation of red blood cells and keep your little one’s skin healthy and coat shiny.
What To Avoid
As much as they’re great, there are things to look out for when choosing soft dog treats. In general, regardless of hard or soft dog treats, you want to avoid chemicals that are toxic to your pets health. And, these toxic chemicals are widely present as preservatives in popular pet treats. Your big box pet food/treat retailers mass process their food at high temperatures which takes away all the nutrients, and at the last stage, go back in to add “nutrients” in the form of preservatives which when mixed with the highly processed ingredients introduce toxic chemicals into your pups body.
The best way to determine what to avoid is to look at the back of the packaging list. If you can’t recognize any of the ingredients, it’s probably not the best treat to give to your pup.
Best Soft Dog Treats
All-natural soft dog treats are the best option for your pup because they are made of natural ingredients that remain natural with nutrients intact, and avoid preservatives or any additives. You can take a look at the packaging and instantly recognize the main ingredients because they are ingredients grown from nature.
It’s also nice to switch up your treats to keep your pup from getting bored and Dogsee soft dog treats give you the much-needed variety to keep your pup drooling at their smell.
Dogsee freeze-dried treats are a great way to introduce fruits and vegetables into your pups diet. You have the option of choosing from different flavours like apple, banana, beetroot and coconut. Bonus: they are single-ingredient treats, gluten/grain free so you can eliminate allergy-causing ingredients.
The soft puppy chews are great for small dogs and puppies and they work to improve dental health, fight against plaque and tartar and promote healthy skin. If you have a senior dog, no problem, there are special dental chews made just for their fragile teeth and gums.
Their bite-sized training treats are great for introducing new behaviors or reinforcing old ones that you want to stick. Plus, they aid in weight management so you won’t have to worry about giving too many.
There are so many ways to reward your little one, but when you know the right treat to give at the right time, you’ll have a much more productive time influencing your pup’s behavior!