In Positive Reinforcement Training For Dogs, the most effective method to reduce treats is to gradually phase out the use of treats. Once your dog is consistently responding to your commands without the assistance of treats, it will no longer miss the goodies. It may be tempting to continue using treats, but you need to be realistic and tailor the rewards to your dog’s personality. Regardless of your intentions, you’ll want to use a gradual reduction of the amount of food and treats you give your dog.
Introducing a secondary reinforcer is an excellent way to reward your dog for achieving the behavior you want. For example, instead of giving it liver, give it kibble or freeze-dried treats. This will help you get your dog used to the treat, and will help you build up its confidence in the new behavior. Similarly, if your dog dislikes car rides, try associating a short trip to beautiful places with a treat.
In addition to eliminating treats altogether, you can also use intermittent reinforcement to teach your dog new behaviors. With this technique, you’ll reward your pet for a particular behavior three times out of four. Then, you’ll gradually increase the time before your pet gets the treat. You can also choose between praising your dog and depriving them of something they like.