How to Train a FOOD-OBSESSED Dog! When food is too distracting.. #dogtrainer #dogtraining #puppy

If you have a food-obsessed dog, you already know how challenging and frustrating mealtime can be. Your furry friend becomes completely fixated on the food and ignores everything else around them. While it may seem cute at first, this behavior can become problematic and even dangerous if left unchecked. Fortunately, with the right training approach, you can teach your dog to manage their food obsession and enjoy mealtime without the added distraction. In this blog post, we will explore effective techniques you can use to train your food-obsessed dog and bring harmony back to mealtime. Whether you are a seasoned dog owner or a new puppy parent, these tips will help you develop a happy and healthy relationship with your furry friend.


Having a dog who loves food can be both a blessing and a curse. While food is an excellent motivator when it comes to training, it can also be incredibly distracting and make it difficult to focus on commands. As a dog trainer, it’s essential to know how to train a food-obsessed dog effectively. In this article, we’ll explore tips and techniques to help you train a food-motivated dog without losing their attention.

Understanding Food Motivation in Dogs

Before we dive into training techniques, it’s crucial to understand why food works so well as a motivator for dogs. Dogs see food as a primary reward, which means they’ll do anything to get it. When training a dog, it’s essential to keep their attention and focus while rewarding them for their good behavior. Food is often the best way to achieve this.

However, when a dog becomes too focused on food, it can be challenging to keep their attention on anything else. This is where training techniques come in, which focuses on teaching them to stay calm and focused on your commands rather than the food they hope to receive.

Techniques to Train a Food-Obsessed Dog

  1. Use High-Value Treats: When training a food-obsessed dog, it’s crucial to use high-value treats that are more tempting than their regular dog food. The treats you choose should be tasty and easy to eat quickly, so they don’t become too distracted.

  2. Incorporate Play: Incorporating play is an excellent way to keep your dog focused on you rather than the food. Playing games like fetch or tug-of-war helps to reinforce good behavior and keep them engaged in training.

  3. Use Timeouts: When your dog becomes overly focused on the food, it’s essential to use timeouts to redirect their attention. This works by removing the food and allowing them to refocus on you before reintroducing the food again.

  4. Teach Impulse Control: Teaching impulse control is essential for any food-obsessed dog. This involves teaching your dog to remain calm and patient when waiting for food or treats rather than jumping or begging.

  5. Gradually Decrease Treats: While treats are an excellent way to reinforce good behavior, it’s essential to gradually decrease their use over time. This helps to prevent your dog from becoming too reliant on treats and helps them to learn to respond to your commands without them.


Training a food-obsessed dog can be a challenge, but with the right techniques and patience, it’s possible to achieve excellent results. By using high-value treats, incorporating play, using timeouts, teaching impulse control, and gradually decreasing treats over time, you can successfully train your dog to remain focused on your commands rather than the food.


  1. Can all dogs be trained using food as a motivator?
    Yes, all dogs respond to food as a motivator. However, some dogs may respond better to other rewards such as toys or praise, so it’s essential to find what works best for your dog.

  2. How often should I give my dog treats during training?
    It’s essential to strike a balance between reinforcing good behavior and not overfeeding your dog. Typically, a few small treats per training session are enough to keep your dog motivated.

  3. Can too many treats be bad for my dog’s health?
    Yes, too many treats can lead to health problems such as obesity and dental issues. It’s essential to choose healthy, high-quality treats and to use them in moderation.

  4. How can I tell if my dog is too focused on the food during training?
    If your dog becomes overly excited or distracted by the food, this is a sign that they’re too focused on the reward. It’s essential to use timeouts to refocus their attention before continuing training.

  5. Can I train my food-obsessed dog on my own, or do I need professional help?
    While it’s possible to train your dog on your own, professional help can be beneficial for those struggling with food-obsessed dogs. A professional dog trainer can provide personalized advice and guidance to help you achieve the best results.