Let’s kick this off with a hard truth: You know the saying “you are what you eat”?
Well—and here’s the hard part—your dog is what you feed her.
If your dog chronically begs for food while avoiding her own bowl, or if your vet wants your pup to drop a few LBs, it’s time to own up. Own up, but don’t feel down! Kick your dog’s junk food habit with three simple steps:
First, stop feeding her anything other than her food.
This is a toughie, but the good news is that it won’t last forever. If you’re trying to break a habit—say you want to quit smoking or oversleeping—studies suggest going cold turkey is the way to do it. Set a 10-day goal for yourself: No treating outside the bowl.
Second, start “sneaking” her healthy treats.
Give her a treat as a special surprise, but keep it healthy. Start with functional, healthful options like the Nutri-Stix. After the 10-day hiatus, she’ll feel like she’s getting a sweet treat, but you know it’s a healthy swap!
Finally, work in other goodies sparingly.
They say it takes 21 days to form a habit. By now, her junk food craving has probably been cured, and hopefully you feel like you can still treat your sweetie with healthy bites. If you truly miss feeding your pup bits of your food, you can sparingly work it back in… smartly. Instead of giving her a handful of buttery popcorn, toss her some baby carrots, for instance.
You can break your dog’s junk food habit, but only by breaking your habit of feeding her junk food! Now get going… today’s day one! (Though, get ready for some sad puppy dog eyes, but stay strong! It’s for her long-term health!)
Maggie Marton is a freelance writer based in Indianapolis. When not hiking with her two pit mixes, Emmett and Cooper, or playing with Newt the Cat, Maggie writes about them (and the pet industry) at ohmydogblog.com and maggiemarton.com.
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