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THE TERM - POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT is often thrown around in dog discussions and open forums. Operant Conditioning offers a better understanding of how you can not only teach your dog, but shape and mold desired behaviors with positive techniques. This pretty much sums up Positive Reinforcement and what it specifically means in terms of working with your dog.
POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT TO THE RESCUE!Here are two quick examples to give you an idea on how you can tap into the power of positive reinforcement to shape your dog’s behavior.
September 10, 2015 by Lisa Desatnik Leave a Comment I have been working with this Havanese puppy, Migo, on training him to go into his crate.
September 8, 2015 by Lisa Desatnik Leave a Comment The other day, I had a second training session with this adorable labradoodle puppy and his family.
So, I thought I’d talk a little about why this happened and some of the lessons here about training. Variations of this game can include different reinforcers such as the opportunity while on leash to greet someone or sniff the grass, the opportunity to get a leash attached, or any activity that gets your dog’s tail wagging. Well, what I saw was a dog who clearly viewed her environment as having much more value than listening to or sitting at the feet of her owner. Ironically I had just come from working with another dog and his owner on a very similar issue.
One of the things I did was I focused on what I wanted the dog I was working with TO DO instead (which was sitting at my side), and rapidly marked and reinforced wanted decisions on the part of my student to give immediate, successive feedback to him.
When I teach clients about clicker training or moment market training (whether you use a clicker, verbal or other marker), I teach them the importance of a rapid reinforcement schedule in the beginning.
January 23, 2015 by Lisa Desatnik Leave a Comment It was to be the second time I was helping a friend solve her dog’s door dashing problem. The first time around, we ended training on a positive note when her dog remained laying down while I opened the door a small amount. The first thing I saw was that all important phrase, ‘most of the time’ which tells me right away that her dog did not understand what it was she was supposed to do to earn reinforcement. The other thing that was going on was that her dog was actually being reinforced for a chain of behaviors (getting up, running to the door, going to the mat and laying down) which was serving to do the opposite of what Betty had intended.
We set out for our second training with me being responsible for the door and my friend responsible for marking her dog’s behavior (well, I was also responsible for making sure she marked the precise moment). It really did not take long this time before I could open the door fully and her dog remained on the mat until released after 10 seconds. It is important to remember, as your pet’s teacher, if your pet is not doing what you want in a training session, to think through your lesson plan and see how you can make it easier for both your pet and you to succeed. January 13, 2015 by Lisa Desatnik Leave a Comment I have long been an advocate for using the most positive strategies for managing and modifying behavior because I have seen firsthand the difference in how that approach has helped to not only set myself and my pets up for success, but also the impact it has had on our relationship.
The research involved observing two dog training schools and their students participating in advanced training classes that taught dogs to sit and walk on a loose leash.
The observer looked at the owners’ behavior, and the dogs’ behavior including the dogs’ body postures when walking on a loose leash and when told to sit.
As many as 65% of the dogs in the negative reinforcement class showed at least one stress-related behavior compared to only 8% of those in the positive reinforcement class.
Additionally, a much smaller percent of dogs in the negative reinforcement based class gazed at their owners in both exercises. December 22, 2014 by Lisa Desatnik Leave a Comment I am always on the look out for opportunities to learn from experts in training through positive reinforcement. While the class was about teaching scent work, because Dave focuses so much on foundational learning and teaching skills, it was about so much more…targeting, clicker training, timing, motivation, setting the animal up for success.
Lisa Desatnik is a Cincinnati dog trainer who has been learning about applied behavior analysis and how it applies to setting people and pets up for training success for more than 13 years; and is continually looking for educational opportunities from the best in the field so that she can pass that information along to help others. I had trained my dog with the typical retail training programs that use a “positive” only training approach. Now don’t get me wrong I believe in a positive approach to behavior.  In fact I have a Masters degree in psychology and I know behavior training from a professional point of view. When I began looking to take my dogs to the next level of training I found that hunters seemed to have the best dogs.

The entire behavior analysis equation also includes positive punishment and negative punishment which we’ll cover in a future post. We’ve talked about using positive reinforcement to acquaint your dog to a toothbrush in our dog teeth cleaning article.
A man was in a busy area with his dog doing his best to try and keep his dog’s focus from the external environment, only his attempts were not working too well.
The environment was so valuable, that even the jerking of the leash, which was intended to be a positive punisher to lower the probability of the leash pulling behavior, did not give the dog reason to stop reacting to what was going on around her. However, in just a few minutes time the dog I was working was focused on me and sitting at my side, and able to look at the environment only to turn his head back to me. The more opportunities you have in a short training session to let your student know, YES, that was a correct decision, the more your student is going to want to pay attention and learn from you – or at least learn what you are intending to teach. We were teaching her dog to lay down on a rug several feet from the door, and remain in that position, before we would open it. Betty was to continue practicing in short sessions, always ending on a positive note (when her dog stayed down while the door opened a little) and wanting more learning. She was actually building value for getting up and running to the door because that resulted in her asking her dog to go to the mat, lay down and get an awesome treat. We needed to provide very clear, consistent and immediate feedback to her dog of exactly the behavior we were teaching. This time as I moved toward the door and her dog remained laying down, Betty clicked BEFORE there was movement by her dog to clearly tell her dog, ‘yes’ that is exactly what I want you to do. I opened the door and this time we counted to two before clicking, then four, then back to two, then ten before marking with a click, releasing her dog and beginning again. What they found was that dogs trained using aversive training methods were 15 times more likely to show symptoms of stress than those who were trained using positive reinforcement. That higher frequency of looking at their owner supports the researchers’ hypothesis that training with positive reinforcement based methods contributes to a better canine-human relationship. In training scent work, that beginning involves teaching your dog to be operant (learning from consequences), understanding moment marking (please see my last blog post about moment marking), and moving away from the reinforcer – all without a leash in an environment without distractions (or at least minimal). Most dog trainers are independent and each has their own method.  Now I’m sure they are all great trainers but the advantage of a Franchise is having a  SYSTEM that work simply and consistently for everyone.
That’s why we always recommend trying different tasty treats to determine which ones are most effective and being creative when training. The following simply illustrates how positive reinforcement can be utilized in a practical everyday sense when communicating and teaching your dog.
His dog continued to pull on leash, and with each pull the man gave the collar a jerk and said, ‘No!’.
The ultimate goal: her dog would go to the rug on cue before opening the front door, and remain laying down until released. With further questioning and watching Betty practice, I realized Betty was expecting too much from her dog too soon.
The dogs represented a diverse cross section of breeds and ages, just as their owners were also from a diverse range of social backgrounds. Gazing less at their owners suggests those dogs may initiate fewer social interactions and pay less attention to their owners, which would make training that much more challenging. Dave may spend days or even weeks on these steps to make sure they are good and strong because he knows those skills will ultimately be the difference between a dog that will eagerly and without influence leave his handler to indicate the scent. We want to be able to walk our dog down a busy street on a loose leash or to be able to call our dog and have him run immediately back to us in any circumstance, without taking the time to teach and strengthen the foundational skills needed first. Her individualized dog training consultations focus on using the most positive strategies for solving pet behavior issues. My dogs performed well.  I should say they performed well as long as they were in a controlled environment.
That’s a SYSTEM.  Sit Means Sit is a SYSTEM that works, simply and effectively, every time, every where, with every dog.
Turning on the thinking brain deactivates the emotional brain, enhancing a dog’s attentiveness with positive motivation and allowing him to move into a calmer state where learning can take place. Reinforcement and Punishment are critical components of behavior psychology, also known as Operant Conditioning.One of the things anyone can truly appreciate about positive reinforcement dog training is that its fundamentals are based on decades of research and not from hearsay or potentially erroneous sources like much of traditional aversive-based dog training.

She was taking too long to mark her dog’s choice of laying down which was not giving clear enough feedback for her dog. Very quickly we got back to where I could first touch the door and she could click for her dog remaining laying down, proceeded to my opening the door a crack and her marking her dog for remaining laying down in a little but longer increments (before there was any movement from her dog). They never ran away from the hunter despite being surrounded by animals that would cause their instinct to chase and hunt to go into high gear, and they did it all WITHOUT a leash and the dogs loved the hunter, and the hunter loved his dog. They had dogs off leash, around high distractions, staying on command and giving their owner full attention with enthusiasm.
This type of learning is called "classical conditioning" and represents reflexive or automatic behavior, rather than intentional behavior.While clicker training initially employs classical conditioning, it quickly becomes operant conditioning as soon as the animal intentionally repeats an action in order to earn a reward.
Probably a dog will value chicken or meat over dry dog food, and my bird Barnaby will value a piece of cream cheese over a pellet.
Negative Reinforcer is something your dog would like to avoid like an unpleasant sound.As long as a specific behavior is occurring, reinforcement can play a role in increasing the possibilities of it occurring with more frequency or rigor.
It’s very obvious that the dog in the photo above finds the blue ball extremely reinforcing.
It just makes sense.Now lets take a look at how using Positive Reinforcement can help in solving some of your doggy problems. Training through operant conditioning results in purposeful behavior, while training through classical conditioning results in habitual behavior.The difference between an animal that behaves with purpose, rather than by habit, is vast.
Fundamentally, once you understand that positively reinforcing dog behavior naturally produces more behavioral output, you’re on your way!Many traditional dog training methods DO work but rely on punishment and aversives that can cause unnecessary wear and tear on your dog. This approach will ultimately help your dog reach the end goal using the wonderful scientific principles of behaviorism.1. The negative psychological side effects related to punishment based training are substantial.
A dog sitting at a door may value the opportunity for smelling flowers or running in the grass.
Punishment will stop a behavior in its tracks but negatively affect your dog’s temperament.
The dog is never experiencing any unnecessary anxiety or stress – that’s the key! You’re simply reinforcing offered behaviors and letting your dog learn and naturally augment his behavior output to a desired level. It doesn’t matter how old your furry friend is, you can begin with the basics and keep building your knowledge on modern dog training methods that work. Since your properly reinforcing each action, you’re dog will naturally take the behavior a step further.
The series covers all the variables, methods and tools you need to explore dog training with markers.
The results of punishment as a training method are difficult to predict and to control.In addition, punishment is not usually identified with an event marker. It is, therefore, less effective than the combined use of an event marker and positive reinforcement in changing behavior.Clicker trainers also feel that their relationships with their animals are stronger and more rewarding when they focus on the positive rather than the negative. The clicker trainer provides this dog with an alternate wanted behavior to replace the unwanted behavior. The bored dog may simply need more activity, or perhaps quiet resting for longer and longer periods can become a rewarded behavior. Learned cues and behaviors are also maintained by real-life rewards: for example sitting quietly at the door is rewarded by opening the door so that the dog can have a walk. This flexibility allows the tools of clicker training to be re-invented in new forms that work in a range of situations, and for an infinite variety of animals.The same principles have also been applied to training for athletes, dancers, skaters, and other people.
These trainers may have first started learning to click as a way of training their dog, but soon realized that the fundamental principles of clicker training could be applied to other areas of their lives. Changing one's focus from the negative to the positive can certainly be a life-changing event.

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Comments to «Positive dog training»

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