Feeding is really something that you need to get right from the start.
I’ve seen far too many dogs that get aggressive at feeding times. When I was young our family dog would growl and snap at anyone that came within a metre of her food at tea time. This is an easy thing to avoid if behaviour is set right while they are puppies.
These tips are most effective if they are enacted from a young age. Use caution if you are going to start trying to reduce aggressive feeding behaviour for grown dogs.
And this isn’t just for huskies either, these tips are useful for most breeds of dogs.
Before giving the dog food
Before you give your dog the bowl, or at least before you allow the dog to start eating, make him sit and look at you. Sitting will start to enforce the command from a young age, and make the dog learn some patience instead of going crazy for the food.
Looking at you creates a better connection between you and the dog. This puts you into the relationship between the dog and the food. This helps to keep the dog from getting territorial around food time and helps to increase the relationship between you and the dog.
Sitting with the dog
Every time you feed the dog, sit with them while they are eating. Pat them, talk to them, play with their paws, pretty much just annoy them.
This will keep the dog from getting to focussed on their food, which will keep them from getting surprised or startled when people are nearby and helps to decrease any territorial behaviour later in life.
Play with the food
Sounds a bit gross, especially depending on what the dog eats for dinner, but this is a great tip to avoid snapping later in life. When you are sitting with the dog, put your hand over parts of their dinner, pick a bit up and hand feed it to them, take the bowl away from them briefly and give it back to them.
This will keep the dog from getting territorial with their food. Let them know that they don’t need to guard the food, that if you take the food it doesn’t mean they’ve lost it and that the you are the boss.
Anyone else have any good tips? Let me know.