Originally Posted by Phoenixangelwyngs
I started training my boys for treats.... but then they didn't want to do anything for me without the treat bag. SOOOoooOO, I stopped using the treats. They now work off of praise and praise alone. I still give treats but I don't ask them to do anything for them. They needed to learn to listen regardless of whether or not I have food for them. Plus I got tired of being covering in dog slobber as they thoroughly searched my hands for any possible food scrap that may be lingering.
If they are searching you and not listening when you don't have food you aren't doing it right
My dogs don't work for praise. But its cause praise isn't all that rewarding to them. As has already been mentioned, if you use punishment then praise becomes valuable. It is then a non punishement marker and the dog can think 'whew no correction is coming'.
How long would you work for if you got no paycheck? Even if you 'should' do your job. And you are a thinking moral creature. Dogs don't know they 'should' follow cues. That is a human ideal. You can train with food and have dogs who are extremely obedient!
I suggest you read Shaping Success by Susan Garrett. Lots of real life examples of how positive training can control even the most over the top out of control dogs....