Once your dog has learned the basic steps of good canine manners – to sit, lie down, stay, and come on command – teaching her not to grab for treats, not to snatch at food, and to accept her meals in calm way will help her become a welcome part of your home during family meal time.

The first step is to make her “Sit” before you give her a treat. When she sits, hold the treat in front of her nose for a few seconds, then say “Take it,” in a firm, yet loving voice.

Allow her to “take” the treat when she reaches for it.

If your dog grabs for the treat before you make the command, or she rushes at it where you can feel her teeth, hold the treat in your hand behind your back and DO NOT give it to her.

Have her return to the sitting position, and try again, repeating “Take it” as you hold the treat in front of her. Only give her the treat when she takes it gently in her mouth at your request. Like all training, you may need to work at this several time a day for a while until she understands what you want.

Repeat these steps EVERY TIME you allow her to pick up a treat or a bite of food from your hands.

When its time for her meal, training her not to rush the bowl and grab for her food is just good “table manners.”

When you are preparing the meal, make sure she “sits” and watches. Don’t allow her to crowd around, jostle you, or jump on you. Stop preparing the food until she sits calmly on command.

As you move the bowl to its normal spot, command your dog to “Sit” and go “Down.” Do not set the bowl of food where she can get it until she is in the “down” position.

Once her bowl is in its place, tell her to “Take it,” and allow her to eat. If she rushes the bowl before you give the command, pick it up, and ask for “Sit” and “Down” again. Only give her the meal, when she completes the task on your request. Repeat these steps EVERY mealtime.

Training your dog not to snatch and grab at her own treats and food also teaches her not to try to steal yours. Being able to comfortably eat a meal or a snack without having your dog misbehave, keeps your entire family – including your pet – happy and stress-free. 

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