Many dog owners want to make sure that their dog does not become aggressive over bones ( or a favorite toy). To do this, many people will periodically take the bone away from the dog. They do this to make sure the dog “allows” the bone to be taken. Now, here is where I have an issue with this method being used for bones. Most people take away the bone and put it away. At the beginning many dogs do “allow” this. Here is what I want everyone to think about: What are we teaching that dog?
You are teaching the dog that when you approach him while he is chewing a bone, you are going to take it away from him. What do you think this dog might start to do if he does not want the bone taken away? Lets put it another way, you are eating a great bowl of ice cream covered with chocolate and caramel and every time you sit down to enjoy this dessert, I come into your home and take it away it from you. How many of you would let me in your house or want me around when you are eating ice cream?
There are dogs who will learn to protect their bone if they have been taught that it will be taken away from them. How can we modify the training so this does not happen? You should take the bone away, then give a yummy treat, and then GIVE THAT DARN BONE BACK! We want them to learn that when things are taken from them, they get something better in return and then get the original item back. This way they have no reason to learn to become defensive (yes, some dogs will aggress no matter what and this is likely genetics). Think of it this way, every time you are eating that bowl of ice cream, I come over, take the bowl., give you $1000.00 and then give your bowl back. Now, how many of you would open the door when I came over while you were eating ice cream:)