Top 10 Best Dog Training Treats 2017

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

As we briefly touched on in our dog training collars post, there are two broad primary categories when it comes to training dogs: aversion training and positive reinforcement. Obviously, given the many activities you can do to form a bond with your dog and help them master commands, this is an oversimplification. It’s just a starting place for figuring out what works best for your dog.

For example, I have three dogs, all of which are around 60 pounds. One of them is very human-responsive and nearly fixated on me at all times. It requires virtually no encouragement for him to understand even new commands or new combinations of actions, so neither corrections nor rewards are required. My youngest is a husky mix who is very dog-focused and will ignore even the most tempting treats if there’s something more interesting going on. The middle dog is exactly that: between the two in age and between the two in temperament. He’s very stubborn, but still focused; he’ll look right at me the whole time and still ignore a command. Of the three, he’s the most food-motivated and cannot resist treats.

Treats serve as the most obvious and commonly-used reward in a positive reinforcement system. When I take any of my dogs on a walk, I still bring something like the Mountain Made Treat Pouch with me so I can reward good behavior. This reinforces that walks are fun and that certain behaviors on a walk can net a bonus.

Since you’ll be giving very many of them a day, these training treats should be small. You don’t want to cause your dog to gain a ton of weight just because you’re trying to get them to sit on command. Sometimes pieces of kibble works, but offering them something different than their usual food provides additional incentive to behave. A training treat will usually be in the realm of two calories each, and are usually small, soft morsels. The softness means they can safely scarf it down quickly to keep the focus on training instead of chewing.

Whether you’re breaking in a new puppy or retraining a rescue, here are the top ten best training treats for dogs.


1. Stewart Pro-Treat Freeze Dried Liver Treats

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Stewart

Our first pick is one of a few freeze-dried options on this list. Freeze dried treats are great for a couple of reasons. First, they’re very limited ingredient, so you don’t have to worry about allergies. Second, they’re considered high-value treats because they tend to smell strongly. High-value treats are good for situations where distractions are prevalent, because they grab your dog’s attention. These U.S.-made treats come in a variety of different flavors, mostly focused on livers.

Price: $21.99 for 12 ounces (21 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Stewart Pro-Treat Freeze Dried Liver Treats here.


Ingredient (Beef Liver flavor):

  • Beef liver

Flavors Available:

  • Wild Salmon
  • Beef Liver
  • Pork Liver
  • Turkey Liver
  • Chicken Liver
  • Bison Liver
  • Chicken Breast
  • Duck Liver
  • Lamb Liver

Calories per treat: Around 6 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Yes

Find more Stewart Pro-Treat Freeze Dried Liver Treats information and reviews here.



2. Wellness Core Pure Rewards Dog Treats

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Wellness

Jerky treats are just one step removed from dried animal protein, and these small squares make for excellent training rewards. Compared to the soft morsels, they make take a little bit longer to chew, but they offer a similar level of interest. Being from the Wellness Core line, they are of course grain-free and generally limited ingredient. If you plan to teach your dog waiting tricks like putting this on their muzzle until you give a command, the flat shape will work well.

Price: $6.99 for four ounces (22 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Wellness Core Pure Rewards Dog Treats here.


First Six Ingredients (Beef & Jerky flavor):

  • Beef
  • Venison
  • Dried chicory root
  • Lecithin
  • Salt
  • Dried cultured whey product

Flavors Available:

Calories per treat: 5 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Yes

Find more Wellness Core Pure Rewards Dog Treats information and reviews here.



3. Crazy Dog Train-Me Grain Free Mini Training Reward Dog Treats

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Crazy Dog

These are the first properly mini-sized soft training morsels on the list, with four ounces accounting for 150 treats. That’s 150 rewards for intensive training sessions. These are also considerably cheaper while still being grain-free. (You can get a little bit cheaper still with the regular recipe if grains aren’t a problem for your dog. Three basic, inticing flavors using real meat as the first ingredient to help fuel successful learning.

Price: $3.31 for four ounces (40 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Crazy Dog Train-Me Grain Free Mini Training Reward Dog Treats here.


First Six Ingredients (Bacon flavor):

  • Pork liver
  • Peas
  • Potatoes
  • Chickpeas
  • Vegetable glycerin
  • Cane sugar

Flavors Available:

  • Bacon
  • Bacon & Chicken
  • Chicken

Calories per treat: 1.6 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Yes

Find more Crazy Dog Train-Me Grain Free Mini Training Reward Dog Treats information and reviews here.



4. Pet Botanics Training Reward

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Pet Botanics

When we first brought our husky mix home, he was quite the project. He had no training nor manners whatsoever and despite being quite smart, he appeared to have no interest in learning. We tried a bag of these treats to turn him around. This relatively oversized bag contains 500 treats, which was nearly enough to get him to appreciate the basic tenets of sitting and keeping his paws on the ground when greeting people. We still use these from time to time, especially as a quick bite on walks, though we’ve largely moved to the next item on our list for our stubborn mutt. They offer both regular and grain-free versions to suit your needs.

Price: $9.99 for 20 ounces (44 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Pet Botanics Training Reward here.


First Six Ingredients (Bacon flavor):

  • Pork liver
  • Pea flour
  • Potatoes
  • Dried whole eggs
  • Glycerin
  • Sugar

Flavors Available:

  • Bacon
  • Beef
  • Chicken
  • Salmon
  • Grain-Free Chicken
  • Grain-Free Salmon
  • Grain-Free Duck & Bacon

Calories per treat: 3 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Available

Find more Pet Botanics Training Reward information and reviews here.



5. Orijen Freeze-Dried Treats

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Orijen

After we more or less worked the rough edeges off of our husky pup, we moved onto leash training in neighborhoods where other dogs were present. He’s fairly dog-reactive, so we needed to up the ante on the rewards. As far as high-value treats go, these Orijen freeze-dried treats are up there with the best. I especially recommend this Six-Fish variety. They smell very strongly and help to redirect my dogs when the fixate on other dogs. They’re pretty pricy, but these pouches come with 105 high-quality treats.

Price: $13.99 for 3.25 ounces

Buy the Orijen Freeze-Dried Treats here.


First Six Ingredients (Six-Fish flavor):

  • Atlantic mackerel
  • Atlantic flounder
  • Atlantic monkfish
  • Atlantic herring
  • Acadian redfish
  • Silver hake

Flavors Available:

Calories per treat: 3 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Yes

Find more Orijen Freeze-Dried Treats information and reviews here.



6. The Honest Kitchen Natural Human Grade Dehydrated Grain-Free Cookies

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

The Honest Kicthen

These training treats are actually small, heart-shaped cookies. They’re entirely free of grain, soy, wheat, and corn and contain eight calories. That’s a little bit on the high side for a training treat, but these are scored in the middle to make them easy to split if you wanted. These are billed as containing human-grade ingredients and a peak at the limited list confirms that you could probably get away with sneaking a few.

Price: $11.75 for 12 ounces

Buy the The Honest Kitchen Natural Human Grade Dehydrated Grain-Free Cookies here.


First Six Ingredients (Duck & Cherry flavor):

  • Chickpea flour
  • Duck
  • Tapioca
  • Molasses
  • Organic virgin coconut oil
  • Cherries

Flavors Available:

  • Beef & Blueberry (Pecks)
  • Chicken & Cranberry (Smooches)
  • Duck & Cherry (Nuzzles)
  • Fish & Pumpkin (Cuddles)

Calories per treat: 8 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Yes

Find more The Honest Kitchen Natural Human Grade Dehydrated Grain-Free Cookies information and reviews here.



7. PureBites Dog Treats

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

PureBites

These PureBites treats offer another compelling freeze-dried option. We included the cat version on our best cat treats post because the simplicity of a single-ingredient treat is hard to beat. While cats require the high percentage of meat in their diets, that quality can increase the appeal for dogs in a training scenario. All ingredients are sourced from the U.S.A, which helps to explain the high price tag.

Price: $18.80 for 11.6 ounces

Buy the PureBites Dog Treats here.


First Ingredient (Chicken flavor):

  • Chicken

Flavors Available:

Calories per treat: 3 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Yes

Find more PureBites Dog Treats information and reviews here.



8. Zuke’s Mini Naturals Dog Treats

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Zuke’s

Zuke’s has made an appearance on our natural dog treats and our dog dental chews posts because of their natural ingredient lists and high customer ratings. There are six different flavors to choose from for these small training morsels. All varieties are three calories or less and the one pound bag offers a good quantity of treats per package.

Price: $11.06 for 16 ounces (10 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Zuke’s Mini Naturals Dog Treats here.


First Six Ingredients (Rabbit flavor):

  • Rabbit
  • Ground barley
  • Ground rice
  • Malted barley
  • Gelatin
  • Vegetable glycerin

Flavors Available:

  • Chicken
  • Duck
  • Peanut Butter
  • Pork
  • Rabbit
  • Salmon

Calories per treat: 2.2 calories
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: No

Find more Zuke’s Mini Naturals Dog Treats information and reviews here.



9. Cloud Star Chewy Tricky Trainers

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Cloud Star

This option bridges the gap between the convenience and portability of small morsels and high-value treats thanks to their strong smell. The price is comparable to the Zuke’s above and the ingredient are similar though this option contains no rice a bit less barley. That probably won’t make a huge difference either way, but if your dog decides they’re over the predominately-meat based training treats, you could try the cheddar cheese variety of these to change it up

Price: $9.36 for 14 ounces (5 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Cloud Star Chewy Tricky Trainers here.


First Six Ingredients (Liver flavor):

  • Chicken liver
  • Barley flour
  • Potato flour
  • Maple syrup
  • Glycerin
  • Tapioca starch

Flavors Available:

Calories per treat: 3 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: No

Find more Cloud Star Chewy Tricky Trainers information and reviews here.



10. Nulo Freestyle Trainers

dog training treats, puppy training treats, best dog training treats, best treats for dog training

Nulo

We included Nulo in our best grain-free dog foods because their foods are formulated for dog health. New for the second half of 2017, the company has released these treats squarely aimed at training. In addition to having the compelling soft texture, they also include cherries and blueberries for an antioxidant boost. My dogs loved the salmon treats and come running across the yard when I hold a few out out to them. They especially helped my new guy learn his new name upon entering our household.

Price: $6.99 for four ounces

Learn more about Nulo Freestyle Trainers here.


First Six Ingredients (Salmon flavor):

  • Salmon
  • Dried ground chickpeas
  • Honey
  • Coconut glycerin
  • Gelatin
  • Natural flavor

Flavors Available:

  • Turkey
  • Salmon
  • Duck

Calories per treat: 2 kcal
Country of manufacture: U.S.A.
Grain-free?: Yes

Find more Nulo Freestyle Trainers information here.


For more information on how to train your dog, be sure to take a peek at our best dog training books.


Heavy, Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by linking to Amazon. Our product recommendations are guided solely by our editors. We have no relationship with manufacturers.
No Comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Discuss on Facebook