Should You Use Hot Dogs as Training Treats?

Are training treats an effective way to teach your dog new tricks? And what about hot dogs? Are they a safe treat option?

Should You Use Hot Dogs as Training Treats?

So you've decided it's time to train your pup to perform a few basic tricks. Whether you are teaching your dog to sit, lay down, roll over, or even play dead, high five and shake hands. You'll need something to use as a reward when your pet performs the desired behavior. With that in mind, let's answer a couple of common questions about training treats and hot dogs.

Should You Use Training Treats?

First things first, should you even use training treats? Some people feel like using dog treats for training is bribery and that bribing your pets to be good is just plain wrong. But here's an argument for training treats you might not have thought of before.

Treats are a great training tool because they make learning fun! That's right, not only will they give your pet a little extra motivation to learn something new, they'll help them know when they've performed a trick right and make training sessions an event to look forward to.

Still not convinced? Well, while training treats are extremely useful when teaching new tricks, once your pet learns how to do the trick, you can easily phase out the treats for good behavior. Once your dog memorizes the trick, he'll perform it on command whether you have a treat or not - all you'll need is a little cheerful praise to make your fur baby happy.

But hot dogs? Is that really good for dogs?

Can Dogs eat Hot Dogs?

So can you feed your dog hot dogs with a clean conscious? The good news is, hot dogs won't hurt your dog. However, you should only give your dog hot dogs once in a while and in moderation. Treats in general should never make up more than 10% of your pet's diet - and hot dogs are no exception.

That said, if your pet is overweight, has food allergies or other health issues, hot dogs might not be an ideal treat. When in doubt, check with your veterinarian before making a decision. On the other hand, if your pet is healthy and within its ideal weight range, then hot dogs are an inexpensive treat they will probably love. In fact, many dogs who aren't motivated by other kinds of treats will often put in some hard work to earn a little piece of hot dog.

Hot Dog Treat Recipe

Turning a hot dog into a treat is quick and easy. Just follow these three steps:

1. Cut up the hot dogs into small pieces, about the size of a peanut. (Remember, moderation is key, plus cutting up the hot dog ensures it won't be a choking hazard.)
2. Cook the hot dog pieces in the oven or microwave until they are well done. This will dry them out so they won't be greasy when you are training and treating.
3. Store the treats in baggies in the fridge until you are ready to use them.

And there you have it! Just three easy steps to stock up your treat reserves so you can be ready for a quick training session anytime. If you find using hot dogs for dog training treats effective, you can find other fun homemade dog treats recipes in this article as well. Happy training!