The 5 Best Dog Training Treats

Feeding happy dog with treats.

For pet parents looking to positively reinforce good behavior or teach their dog a new trick, training treats can be effective. According to Victoria Schade, dog trainer, author, and behavior expert for Great Pet Care, the best dog training treats are small, low calorie, and easy and quick to chew. They also differ from normal treats in that they need to be no bigger than thumbnail-size and very high value.

“This means greasy, stinky, mushy, or all of the above,” she told Bustle via email. As for the texture of a training treats, Schade recommends moist treats over dry biscuits.

“Moist treats are always a great idea — [they should be] soft enough so that you can easily split them. Freeze-dried treats are another great option, which varies from crumbly to harder cubes. As for flavors, meat flavors are always winners, followed by peanut butter and cheese,” she added.

As a guideline, Schade advises feeding dogs no more than 10% of their daily caloric intake in treats. Keep in mind that you can also mix in kibble with training treats to help cut down on calories. But high-value training treats will typically keep a dog’s attention and serve as the best motivator during a training session.

Keep scrolling for the best selection of training treats you can find for your puppy pal on Amazon. All of these can be used on puppies and dogs as little as 5 pounds and up.

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The Overall Best Dog Training Treats

These tiny, moist Zuke's treats are one of the most popular training treats on Amazon with over 9,000 reviews and an average rating of 4.7 out of five stars. They're made with wholesome ingredients without any corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors or flavors included, and they only have three calories per treat. Plus, they come in six flavor options (chicken, duck, pork, rabbit, salmon, and peanut butter and oats), so there's bound to be a flavor that your dog will love.

Helpful review: “I started buying these treats, when my puppy and I were going through obedience classes. We were supposed to bring 'pea sized' treats to class to reward the pups. This treat is the perfect size. They are small enough they I didn't feel bad about giving my pup several of them during class. Better yet, these treats didn't give my dog gas like some other brands did. Six months later, we still use these treats on a regular basis.”


The Runner-Up: Bone-Shaped Treats With Non-GMO Ingredients

Although they're slightly more expensive per ounce than the previous pick, these Nutro mini bites dog treats are still a solid choice for a training treat. They are available in four different flavors (beef and hickory smoke, berry and yogurt, chicken, and peanut) and contain only non-GMO ingredients. They're also free of corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives and have just three calories per treat.

Helpful review: “These are super tiny and I love them, I use these for training and to toss around the house and have Geena look for them. They smell good too, I like to mix the flavors to keep it from getting boring for my pup. She loves them!”


The Best Freeze-Dried Dog Training Treats

For the most low-calorie training option, look no further than these small freeze-dried Pupford training treats. Available in either salmon or sweet potato flavor, they only have one calorie per treat. Plus, these bites are made from real food without a bunch of additives or fillers. There are just two ingredients for the salmon option, and the sweet potato is a single ingredient treat.

Helpful review: “These are perfect for training! Small pieces so they don't fill up too quickly. There is no mess from having to break them into smaller pieces. My dog seems to love the flavor. I used her a normal hard treat while teaching her ‘leave it.’ She left it on the floor in order to get this one!”


The Best Organic Training Treats

If you'd prefer an organic training treat for your pup, these Full Moon training treats are a high-quality option. They're made from human-grade USDA-certified organic chicken or duck and have no corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors, preservatives, or colors contained within them. They're also small, chewy, and only three calories per treat.

Helpful review: “These are great. My dog loves them and they are the perfect size for training. The only reason for 4 instead of 5 stars is that they will go moldy if you don't use them fast enough. I actually like that as it means this is real food, but it is important to keep in mind when purchasing.”


The Most Affordable Training Treats

At less than half the cost of any other treat on this list, these hickory smoke beef flavored Lil' Bitz treats are a very affordable training treat option. Plus, they have just four calories per treat, are grain-free, and contain no artificial flavors or colors.

Helpful review: “I'm in the process of training my new puppy and comparing products this seemed like the best deal, but after getting it it seemed like a really good quality product on top of being a good deal. He seems to like the flavor. He learned to sit in one day using these treats and now demands them for any training!”


Victoria Schade, dog trainer, author, and a behavior expert for Great Pet Care