The first year in Oregon has been a whirlwind, but one of the biggest bonuses of living out here is bringing Carter to the local tap house. What I have realized is the more I bring Carter to the tap house, the more I can realize his issues, and the more I can target behaviors that I need to work on. That is why I am bringing back ‘Brewery Behavior,’ not only with something I think Carter can improve on, but with behavior issues I see other people struggle with at the tap house.
Oh Sh*t Treats
Today I am sharing my number one, go to tip, that you MUST do if you are bringing your dog into a public situation. It’s a little blunt, but it’s what I like to refer to as the ‘Oh Sh*t Treats.’ Honestly, I can’t think of a better way to put it, so we have to go with ‘Oh Sh*t Treats,’ it is what it is. The concept is exactly what you think it is, it’s all about having small pieces of high value (very important) treats at the tip of your fingers for those moments you need to get your dog’s attention pronto.
High Value is Key
Yes, I know this tip sounds simple, but it is totally necessary. I constantly see owners at the tap house trying to get their dogs attention. I can’t stress how important a high value treat is, I am talking lunch meat, rotisserie chicken, hot dogs, cheese or anything that your pup is obsessed with and that will grab their attention. Leave the kibble and dry treats and home, and give them something good!
I usually use my ‘Oh Sh*t Treats’ when another dog in the tap house barks, for some reason that really just gets Carter going, and drives him a bit crazy. I just whip out a treat and refocus his attention. That is the point of the treat, you want to refocus your pup’s attention, and get them focused on you instead of the distraction. This is why the high value treat is so crucial, because it gives your dog a good incentive to focus on you. Your refocus can be simple, you can use “sit” and make sure the attention is on you. Carter has been trained to look me in the eyes when I say his name, so if you have a cue like that, it would work as well, I have known others that use “look” “eyes” or “watch me.”
So before you leave for the local brewery, or usually tap house in my case. Make sure you are armed with ‘Oh Sh*t Treats,’ this way you can swoop in and get your dog to focus on you, no matter the situation going on around you!
What issues do you have with your pup at the brewery? Let us know in the comments below, and you might find out how to fix them in another installment of Brewery Behavior!