How do I stop my dog from eating things off the street when we are out walking?

She is a rescue and has been with us for 12 months (she was 1yr when we got her), she had never been socialised and seemed to always be hungry. She has changed loads since we’ve had her and is now a very happy, sociable little dog. However, the food thing has never really changed. She is fed two small meals a day and has a very sensitive stomach, she eats an easily digestible dog food on the advise of our vet. But she’s always hungry! Aways on the hunt for food! She will even eat the bird seed that has dropped out of the feeders in the garden. But the main problem is when I take her for a walk in the evening, not so much during the day because I can look ahead to see if there is any food on the floor. But when it’s dark I can’t see, but she can always find it! Any discarded food, pizza, chips, kebabs, she eats it. Unfortunately I have to walk down a main pathway and there is always this food on the floor.
I’m after any sensible suggestions on how I can stop her from picking up bits of food. I don’t believe in the use of muzzles so that is out of the question. I have tried to force open her mouth to get the food out but she will clamp her mouth shut and swallow it whole if she can. I am at my wits end and worry that one day she will eat something bad!

i would take whatever she had eaten out of her mouth matter of factly and not angry … no matter what … even if i had to stick my finger down her throat to dig it out … that was unpleasant enough for the dog that she no longer does it … it took about a few months to get the point across … i did not talk to her, i did not say no, i just got it out of her mouth … if it is a small dog, you are stronger than the dogs jaws …


I saw on a show that there is one way to correct this behaviour.

Take treats with you on your walk, or you can even practice this in your home.

Drop something that is very tempting to her on the floor, then when she goes to acknowledge it, redirect her attention to the treat in your hand. Keep doing this until she basically knows that she’s going to get the treat for leaving the thing on the ground alone.

It might be helpful to do this outside as well since that’s where you are having problems. Just be consistent and don’t give up. You really need to teach her that it’s not okay to eat things that she finds.

I have this problem with one of my dogs. What I find works is to walk with a short leash (so she’s walking beside you) and you’ll be able to feel when she pulls to pick up some food. Quickly pull her away from the food. If she does grab it, don’t say a command (this will just let her know that you’re going to take it, and she’ll just swallow it faster) and just reach down and grab her mouth, and try to get it out. Make sure you give her a stern &quot:No!&quot: after, while showing her the food in your hand. Just keep trying 🙂 she’ll get it eventually. Make sure you always seem disappointed when she picks something up, so she knows she’s done something wrong.

Too bad you don’t believe in muzzles. A basket style muzzle will allow a dog to breathe normally or pant but will keep it from dying from eating the poisoned bait some dog hating jerks leave out for dogs on the sidewalks and street.

Until you can teach your dog better, a muzzle could be your dog’s best friend.

One of those dog halters, also called &quot:head collars&quot: could be used to raise the dog’s head up, if you kept a close eye on the dog.

I don’t really like muzzles either but my basset hound has to use it if we go around dogs as he does not like other dogs but as far as walking we have a Gentle Leader and its no a muzzle but it goes around the muzzle and neck and if they pull or u do it pulls there head and mouth closed. It is manly used for dogs that pull while on walks but I think it would work for u to. If u or the dog is not pulling it hangs so the dogs mouth is fully open unlike a muzzle. I would give it at try it is like $10 at a pet store so if it’s work like u want it’s not like it will be a big loss. Hope this helps

I’ve had a dog do this before. I learned he just liked carrying something in his mouth, so started bringing a toy along. He would carry it for pretty much the whole walk.

I also taught him &quot:leave it&quot: and &quot:drop it&quot: which is pretty important anyway, and especially so if you have a dog with an oral fixation. lol

There are several good ways to teach these, so google both and give it a shot.

ok there are a few options. worm her regularly so she doesnt get overly hungry from them! this should be done every 3 months and should be calculated to her weight.
another option is to get a halti collar which ties around the muzzle.


when she goes for food you can pull of the leash to pull her head away from it.

another option is to teach her the ‘leave it’ command. this is where you have a treat in each hand, one hand behind your back. make a closed fist around each treat and put the fist infront of your dog. she will try and lick, bite and get the treat from your hand. when she eventually gives up say ‘leave it’ in a low stern voice then produce the treat from your hand behind your back. do this over and over again until when you say ‘leave it’ she doesnt touch the hand at all. when out on a walk take her near food on purpose and say the command then carry on walking after rewarding her with a treat! use this in combination with the halti trust me it works!

Among the many important responsibilities dog owners have, training a dog is among the most important. Learn here https://tr.im/ZN0Vs

Well-trained pets are easier to care for and love, cause less damage to your home (and theirs), and live happier lives.

Dogs send myriad messages with their bodies and their voices — this is one reason why they’re so fascinating and beloved. The more you understand their messages, the more you understand them and how your own messages are being understood.

Think yourself lucky, my rescue dog a Springer spaniel eats other dogs poo. Have spoken to a vet friend and she says if I can find a cure please let her know. Think it’s just a case of watching and scolding when your dog eats rubbish. I often throw my lead toward him to scare him but not hurt him. Best of luck.

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