- 2 weeks ago
- Wedding: April 2022
I have a half lab, half golden now 10mo. I think you’re doing all the right steps! Lab are voracious eaters and can be food aggressive at times (I’ve had 4 labs in my life). I would keep doing what you’ve been doing + suggest the following that I did with mine:
– teaching patience with food: if the pup jumps/barks/runs when food is being prepared/putting on the ground, say ah-uh (or whatever your ‘no’ command is) stop all actions and walk away. Next step would be to have him ‘sit’ and ‘wait’ until you give the ‘ok’ command to eat.
– teaching drop it and leave it very very early on: start by playng together with a toy and ask her to drop it. when she does reward with high value food she only gets for dropping/leaving it commands. Do this a few times a day to make it part of play. I reinforce it on walks when he picks up low value sticks/stones. I ramped it up by offering a long lasting treat like a bully stick and asking him to drop it. After I pick it up, give him the cheese, give the bully stick back. This way he knows it comes back. Eventually you can take and not give it back.
– you can also try a vibration or beeping collar with a remote. when she snarls, give her a vibration so she gets distracted. this worked wonders for mine and jumping on people.
Consistency is the key – everyone must follow the same rules and you need to enforce it. My pup never has issues with me taking food right out of his mouth or waiting up to 10min to get the ‘ok’ to eat (nevermind the puddle of drool) BUT my fiance will take food from him and forget to give it back or pretend to eat it and the dog used to snarl, but now rapidly eats or picks it up and hides in the crate whenever he sees him get close. Correct immediately – when a new person approached him when he had a treat and he growled, I immediately ah-uh him and take away the treat to let him know it’s not ok. I also agree while you’re in this teaching phase to teach your kids to leave the dog alone when she’s easily triggered.