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why do correction based training methods have such a bad rep??

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 10:09 AM
why is it that we as humans, feel that doing what mother nature does is somehow, bad, wrong, or immoral?

when dogs in a pack in the wild (or wolves) misbehave, they are corrected, physically, by the pack leader. these corrections are far more harsh than most people ever get with their dogs.

in the wild, wolves dont give treats/pats for a pack member behaving properly.

in situations in the wild, reward is food/water and playtime. affection is shown when packs groom each other and play.

i just dont understand why doing what is natural for an animal is cruel.:shrug::shrug:

its not like people who use prong collars are hateful to their animals. the dog understands that language, its their natural communication, a "bite"

if using body language and following nature is cruel im definitely missing something.

but to go against nature is oh so human, we are the only animal that does it.

happycats
July 31st, 2008, 10:19 AM
I believe in corrections, but not beating or hitting. I quick jerk for the leash, a tap to the neck (hand in a claw position) or if the dog is completely freaking a tap of the foot to the rump.

I use cesar milans methods, which I believe are as close to a wolf packs natural ways, and I believe most dogs respond best to and understand.

Excercise discipline and affection, in that order.

MIA
July 31st, 2008, 10:19 AM
My personal opinion is that most people don't know how to utilize corrections properly or effectively.... Having spent many of hours watching people at the beach with their dogs I can see why dogs are confused and misbehaved.... There is nothing wrong with effective training methods, the problem is utilizing the methods properly!

Also the difference between wolves and dogs is some dogs like working for praise!

I have worked with many dogs over the years and utilize many different training methods, often combining many of them together, not one method works on it's own, in my opinion. Any trainer that says their method is the be all and end all is not a good trainer IMO as each dog is different, motivated differently, responds to different methods. I have three personal dogs who I can say were all trained differently, one with treats as that's what motivated him, with the odd correction, one with voice motivation and one well she needed everything under the sun! LOL

So correction training does have it's place if done properly, as does treat training etc, problem to me is finding that trainer who utilizes all methods available, one who observes the dog to see what the dog needs to work, and one that can actually teach the owner to work with the dog.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 10:29 AM
ok

definitely fair and valid posts and points.

and i very much agree that each dog needs its own training method based on what it responds to!

i just feel like no matter what you tell people who do clicker training (THIS IS NOT INTENDED TO BE DIRECTED AT ANYONE HERE IN PARTICULAR!) or all reward based, they just have this general disgust towards correcting their dog.

i just dont understand it!:shrug::shrug::shrug::shrug:

luckypenny
July 31st, 2008, 10:43 AM
why is it that we as humans, feel that doing what mother nature does is somehow, bad, wrong, or immoral?

when dogs in a pack in the wild (or wolves) misbehave, they are corrected, physically, by the pack leader. these corrections are far more harsh than most people ever get with their dogs.



If you were to observe dogs/wolves in the wild, you would notice that corrections are not harsh at all. They show each other what's appropriate and not, through body language and sound. They don't physically hurt each other unless involved in a fight.

We have three dogs and foster puppies at any given time. I've never witnessed my dogs use any contact at all when either correcting each other or any puppies. They use a look, lift their lips, bare teeth, growl, snap, charge, etc, but never ever make any contact. And I have to humbly admit, that our dogs are the better trainers.

ETA: While our dogs are 'natural' teachers in unacceptable behavior, they also spend numerous hours playing with each other and puppies when everyone is respectful of each other...perhaps what we would define as "rewards?"

pitgrrl
July 31st, 2008, 11:22 AM
I think much of what gets treated as mimicked behavior of dogs/wolves is really a misinterpretation of how dogs interact with each other. Take the ever controversial alpha roll for instance. Have you ever seen dogs roll and pin each other outside of a fight?

I haven't, even amongst older dogs schooling pups. What I have seen are dogs themselves offering this behavior as an indication of submission. That, to me, is a long way from forcing a dog into this position by human. I don't think this is the only example of such inept human applications of what we think we're seeing in "nature".

Since you brought up a prong collar and likened it to a corrective nip of another dog, I feel like I have to point out that dogs aren't stupid, they know very well that we are humans (not some alpha wolf straight out of the wild) and a prong collar is not the very precisely controlled mouth of another dog (and no, I'm not fundamentally opposed to prong collars being used properly in appropriate situations).

I really don't think any and all correction are evil, but animal training has come a long way. Watch dogs interact, they communicate with amazingly subtle body language that I don't think we even know the half of. Why then do humans insist on using sledgehammer like methods to communicate what a dog manages to with a momentary, subtle gesture? And call it "natural"?

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 11:35 AM
granted im not talking about the application of corrections. but if you are referring to the application of correction being misused i agree.

im simply talking about the method of correction, PROPERLY done.

i dont think it should be viewed as a negative, nor do i think positive training should be thought of as ineffective.


i do feel that doing whatever helps the dog should be priority number 1, regardless of the method.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 11:46 AM
i have watched several DVD's about wolf pack behavior in the last year. and they do not hurt each other, but people who use corrections usually dont hurt the dog either.

some do, who abuse and punch and kick the dog, but the average person who uses a prong collar doesnt.

corrections arent harsh in the sense of physical damage, but the intensity behind an alpha dog protecting his meal is EXTREME!

teeth bared snarling lunging at the lower ranked dog until the dog runs away and cowers in fear! "living with wolves" is a good one i watched.

i also dont like your comparison in that you dont acknowledge that dog owners spend hours upon hours during the day with their dog when they dont correct them. when they play with groom and exercise them.

if you admit that your dogs are better trainers, would it not be wise to try our best to mimick their behavior?


If you were to observe dogs/wolves in the wild, you would notice that corrections are not harsh at all. They show each other what's appropriate and not, through body language and sound. They don't physically hurt each other unless involved in a fight.

We have three dogs and foster puppies at any given time. I've never witnessed my dogs use any contact at all when either correcting each other or any puppies. They use a look, lift their lips, bare teeth, growl, snap, charge, etc, but never ever make any contact. And I have to humbly admit, that our dogs are the better trainers.

ETA: While our dogs are 'natural' teachers in unacceptable behavior, they also spend numerous hours playing with each other and puppies when everyone is respectful of each other...perhaps what we would define as "rewards?"

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 11:50 AM
I think much of what gets treated as mimicked behavior of dogs/wolves is really a misinterpretation of how dogs interact with each other. Take the ever controversial alpha roll for instance. Have you ever seen dogs roll and pin each other outside of a fight?

I haven't, even amongst older dogs schooling pups. What I have seen are dogs themselves offering this behavior as an indication of submission. That, to me, is a long way from forcing a dog into this position by human. I don't think this is the only example of such inept human applications of what we think we're seeing in "nature".

Since you brought up a prong collar and likened it to a corrective nip of another dog, I feel like I have to point out that dogs aren't stupid, they know very well that we are humans (not some alpha wolf straight out of the wild) and a prong collar is not the very precisely controlled mouth of another dog (and no, I'm not fundamentally opposed to prong collars being used properly in appropriate situations).

I really don't think any and all correction are evil, but animal training has come a long way. Watch dogs interact, they communicate with amazingly subtle body language that I don't think we even know the half of. Why then do humans insist on using sledgehammer like methods to communicate what a dog manages to with a momentary, subtle gesture? And call it "natural"?

i have seen dogs charge each other, fight and draw blood, so i hardly draw the line at forcing a dog to lay on its side as far as what a dog would do to another dog.

now, as far as the alpha roll goes, i think that it certainly addresses extreme behavior better than a bag of treats. if a dog lunges at a child, i think you SHOULD force your dog to submit at that second, to let him know that is not acceptable.


how can you ignore the behavior and think "since i ignored it, he will stop".

no consequence = no reason for the animal to stop, as much as he/she may want to please you. YOU are responsible for not only saying what is right, with treats, pats praise etc. but also for what is wrong.

just how i think it works.

luckypenny
July 31st, 2008, 12:13 PM
i have watched several DVD's about wolf pack behavior in the last year. and they do not hurt each other, but people who use corrections usually dont hurt the dog either.

If giving a pop on a choker, prong collar, or whatever 'tool' one might use, doesn't hurt a dog, then I must be misinformed.

i also dont like your comparison in that you dont acknowledge that dog owners spend hours upon hours during the day with their dog when they dont correct them. when they play with groom and exercise them.

I did acknowledge this. I wrote, "perhaps what we would define as "rewards?" Perhaps I wasn't clear enough.

if you admit that your dogs are better trainers, would it not be wise to try our best to mimick their behavior?

I do mimic their behavior using body language and sounds. My dogs don't use physical contact to teach each other. They also don't use chokers, prongs, whatever :shrug: and they seem to communicate just fine. I don't feel the need to use these tools either.

I'm just trying to point out that the behavior/communication between dogs is not always what we perceive it to be. I'm not judging you personally, kigndano. I too, have attempted training using a choker, as well as a prong to prevent one of our dogs from dragging me down the street when other methods didn't seem to work. However, I very quickly learned that it wasn't working in the way that I wanted it to, and when I reverted back to "positive" methods, we experienced much more positive outcomes. It takes longer and much more perseverance and patience, as well as education on my part, but I, and our dogs too, I'm sure, feel all the better for it. As I often say, I much prefer to have our dogs respect, trust, and comply because they want to, not because they have to.

Just my :2cents:, no disrespect intended.

pitgrrl
July 31st, 2008, 12:20 PM
i have seen dogs charge each other, fight and draw blood, so i hardly draw the line at forcing a dog to lay on its side as far as what a dog would do to another dog.

I specified "outside of a fight". Dogs fight, I know this, but a fight is a fight, not a corrective nip or growl. Dogs are also not wolves, their (genetic) temperaments and learned behavior are the product of humans, as are their living conditions, therefore I wouldn't think X dog's propensity for fighting is comparable to that of a wolf in the wild, living in a pack, etc.


now, as far as the alpha roll goes, i think that it certainly addresses extreme behavior better than a bag of treats. if a dog lunges at a child, i think you SHOULD force your dog to submit at that second, to let him know that is not acceptable.

I'm not suggesting that extreme behavior, like trying to bite children, doesn't require action on the part of the owner, I'm just not of the opinion that an alpha role is an appropriate or effective response, nor do I think it's remotely the only option.



how can you ignore the behavior and think "since i ignored it, he will stop".

no consequence = no reason for the animal to stop, as much as he/she may want to please you. YOU are responsible for not only saying what is right, with treats, pats praise etc. but also for what is wrong.

just how i think it works.

Well I dunno what to tell you, you seem to be very set on seeing the human-dog relationship as inherently confrontational. Personally I don't want to, nor do I consider it beneficial to myself or my dogs to see it that way.

Even if a behavior is not being rewarded by you, it does not mean that it isn't self-rewarding to the dog. So, yes, if I just ignore Basil when he repeated jumps on the counter and finds snacks, he'll keep doing it because he's being rewarded, even if I'm not the one controlling the reward. Similarly, when Streets flips out over another dog, that it rewarding to him, so if I just try to ignore it he'll keep doing it.

These examples are different that say, a dog whining to get on the couch and the owner ignoring it (ie not providing the desired reward) and the dog eventually learning that the whining isn't getting him anything. In the case of a self rewarding activity you obviously can't just ignore it, you need to remove the reward that the dog is getting (making sure the counter never has food available) or teach an alternative behavior and offer a reward of greater value (in the case of Streets slow desensitization to the presence of other dogs, paired with high value treats or games for ignoring other dogs).

luckypenny
July 31st, 2008, 12:24 PM
now, as far as the alpha roll goes, i think that it certainly addresses extreme behavior better than a bag of treats. if a dog lunges at a child, i think you SHOULD force your dog to submit at that second, to let him know that is not acceptable.

Unfortunately, you run the risk of your dog associating a child with a punishment which can further exacerbate their aggression towards them. De-sensitizing and re-conditioning using positive associations is probably a better method in training a dog for this type of situation. What happens when one is not there to "punish" a dog who's aggressing a child?


how can you ignore the behavior and think "since i ignored it, he will stop".

I can't think of any behaviorists or trainers, regardless of the training methods used, suggest ignoring such behavior.

just how i think it works.

And you are entitled to your beliefs.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 01:23 PM
i am not set on seeing it as confrontational, but if bad behavior occurs i do feel you have to address it on the spot.

the alpha roll is by no means the only method of course, and it is VERY extreme. that being said after doing more research after last year when i used it a few times i stopped doing it unless i had no choice but to control my dog (pulled off his collar 3 or 4 times and was ballistic)

i also agree about your dog vs wolf arguement, it is a great point.

i also agree with the difference between a self rewarding behaviour or not; ie psycho flip outs at dogs may not seem rewarding to us, but they are to the dog.

i am not trying to start up fights, i just get the impression that people feel corrections have NO place in training sometimes.

i just disagree with that, and maybe if someone dropped a knowledge bomb on me i wouldnt.

we agree on a lot of dog training stuff, i just dont ask questions about those. what i ask about are the correction based methods because i do not want to do them wrong.




I specified "outside of a fight". Dogs fight, I know this, but a fight is a fight, not a corrective nip or growl. Dogs are also not wolves, their (genetic) temperaments and learned behavior are the product of humans, as are their living conditions, therefore I wouldn't think X dog's propensity for fighting is comparable to that of a wolf in the wild, living in a pack, etc.



I'm not suggesting that extreme behavior, like trying to bite children, doesn't require action on the part of the owner, I'm just not of the opinion that an alpha role is an appropriate or effective response, nor do I think it's remotely the only option.




Well I dunno what to tell you, you seem to be very set on seeing the human-dog relationship as inherently confrontational. Personally I don't want to, nor do I consider it beneficial to myself or my dogs to see it that way.

Even if a behavior is not being rewarded by you, it does not mean that it isn't self-rewarding to the dog. So, yes, if I just ignore Basil when he repeated jumps on the counter and finds snacks, he'll keep doing it because he's being rewarded, even if I'm not the one controlling the reward. Similarly, when Streets flips out over another dog, that it rewarding to him, so if I just try to ignore it he'll keep doing it.

These examples are different that say, a dog whining to get on the couch and the owner ignoring it (ie not providing the desired reward) and the dog eventually learning that the whining isn't getting him anything. In the case of a self rewarding activity you obviously can't just ignore it, you need to remove the reward that the dog is getting (making sure the counter never has food available) or teach an alternative behavior and offer a reward of greater value (in the case of Streets slow desensitization to the presence of other dogs, paired with high value treats or games for ignoring other dogs).

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 01:26 PM
all due respect luckypenny, but if you start that arguement you can go down a rabbit hole really fast.

he could also associate it with the smell of the food on the ground next to him at the time could he not?

if you can show me a study that proves that a dog associates x response with x action every time please do, otherwise i always find myself thinking he may associate the wrong thing with what i do etc etc etc.


what happens is probably the dog attacks the child and injures it. which would just be poor ownership IMO. someone needs to be there to control the situation.

my dog is not aggressive towards children, i was using it as an example, just to clarify.


Unfortunately, you run the risk of your dog associating a child with a punishment which can further exacerbate their aggression towards them. De-sensitizing and re-conditioning using positive associations is probably a better method in training a dog for this type of situation. What happens when one is not there to "punish" a dog who's aggressing a child?




I can't think of any behaviorists or trainers, regardless of the training methods used, suggest ignoring such behavior.



And you are entitled to your beliefs.

luckypenny
July 31st, 2008, 01:42 PM
all due respect luckypenny, but if you start that arguement you can go down a rabbit hole really fast.

What argument? I'm speaking out of experience with our dogs as well as what I've learned form experienced behaviorists and trainers.

:confused: And that comment is intended with "all due respect?" Judging by such words, sounds as if someone is not on the same page as you, there is no 'due' respect for them.

You brought up a topic. Naturally you'll get responses. Take what you like and leave the rest; there's no need to get defensive as no one is attacking you, just disagreeing and sharing their thought/opinions. That's alright, isn't it :shrug:?

pitgrrl
July 31st, 2008, 01:49 PM
all due respect luckypenny, but if you start that arguement you can go down a rabbit hole really fast.

he could also associate it with the smell of the food on the ground next to him at the time could he not?

if you can show me a study that proves that a dog associates x response with x action every time please do, otherwise i always find myself thinking he may associate the wrong thing with what i do etc etc etc.


If you don't believe that a badly timed and/or inappropriate correction can build associations that actually make the situation worse or that are simply unintended, I'm afraid you're going to run into some problems. :shrug:

You're example of biting a child further worries me as you make no mention of trying to figure out what this behavior stems from. What might be appropriate for one dog could be very dangerous with another.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 02:20 PM
the arguement of what the dog will associate a correction or re ward or whatever with.

not an arguement as in, yelling at each other arguement.

if you bring up the point? of what a dog may or may not associate with might be a better way to put it.

if you have lived it with one dog, can i assume all dogs are the same and will associate the same way?


and "going down a rabbit hole" isnt disrespectful!

i mean like, you could start arguing in circles and what ifs!




What argument? I'm speaking out of experience with our dogs as well as what I've learned form experienced behaviorists and trainers.

:confused: And that comment is intended with "all due respect?" Judging by such words, sounds as if someone is not on the same page as you, there is no 'due' respect for them.

You brought up a topic. Naturally you'll get responses. Take what you like and leave the rest; there's no need to get defensive as no one is attacking you, just disagreeing and sharing their thought/opinions. That's alright, isn't it :shrug:?

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 02:23 PM
i do believe that a badly timed correction can do that. but even IF you time it right is it always guaranteed that the dog will associate it with the child, the lunge, the bark etc..?????

and i only used it as an example because it came to mind as a serious behavior that cant always be addressed through a long term plan. ONLY in that it may happen between the start and end of a long term program.

so in that case, where something does happen that needs addressing.....that was my scenario.


not everything i have said applies to me at all, im just trying to understand.


If you don't believe that a badly timed and/or inappropriate correction can build associations that actually make the situation worse or that are simply unintended, I'm afraid you're going to run into some problems. :shrug:

You're example of biting a child further worries me as you make no mention of trying to figure out what this behavior stems from. What might be appropriate for one dog could be very dangerous with another.

pitgrrl
July 31st, 2008, 02:43 PM
i do believe that a badly timed correction can do that. but even IF you time it right is it always guaranteed that the dog will associate it with the child, the lunge, the bark etc..?????

Ah, but that's part of dealing with problem behaviors, figuring out, from the dog's point of view, what's going on and finding an appropriate way to change their perception and response to the situation.

If one doesn't take the time to do this, you can run into problems. So, you start asking yourself questions like what is the dog focusing on? What's going on in the environment that is possibly triggering the behavior? What is the dog, over all, like? On and on till you think you may have all the components figured out.

Obviously teaching a dog to sit isn't the same thing, but that doesn't seem to be what you're addressing.




and i only used it as an example because it came to mind as a serious behavior that cant always be addressed through a long term plan. ONLY in that it may happen between the start and end of a long term program.

so in that case, where something does happen that needs addressing.....that was my scenario.


not everything i have said applies to me at all, im just trying to understand.

Fine so lets take an actual example, why do you think your dog flips out at other dogs?

And, as a follow up question, what specifically are you trying to address/communicate with a leash correction?

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 03:09 PM
"Fine so lets take an actual example, why do you think your dog flips out at other dogs?

And, as a follow up question, what specifically are you trying to address/communicate with a leash correction?"


why do i think he flips out at other dogs...

i think its partially territorial because he pees on absolutely everything he can when we have our "non-work" walks in the afternoon. neighbors fences etc.


i think its anxiety because he wants to go greet and i dont allow him to

i think its excitement because he loves to play with other dogs, but walk time is NOT play time with the doggies walking by.


with my leash correction i am trying to "snap him out of it" like the dog whisperer, i watch him over and over when he times it right get the dog to look up at him. i CAN get this to happen sometimes, but my timing is still not perfect every time.

if i miss it by even a 1/2 second it seems it is too late, and that is when i get into the 45 nagging corrections scenario.

i am trying to say "hey, cash....remember me? we're walking here, not play time"

i try snapping my fingers and saying "ah ah" tapping him on the side, saying his name etc...

once he is in the zone hes there until i firmly correct him for getting all excited/barking/jumping.


then, when i do block the behavior, he gets "angry" at me for telling him what to do i think, and THAT is when the hissy fits used to start.

now i can stop them with the slip collar, and they are definitely dwindling down day by day since i have been able to not allow him to self reward.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 03:11 PM
also, i dont believe in TEACHING a command with corrections.

that is not fair.

i taught with lots of treats and repitions to make SURE my dog knew what i was asking of him.

now, that said, if we were out walking and i tell him to sit, and he does not, i DO APPLY a small quick correction with the slip collar because he sits down at least 15 times a day for treats/pats/water etc.

i dont think that is bad.

do you?

pitgrrl
July 31st, 2008, 03:32 PM
also, i dont believe in TEACHING a command with corrections.

that is not fair.

i taught with lots of treats and repitions to make SURE my dog knew what i was asking of him.

now, that said, if we were out walking and i tell him to sit, and he does not, i DO APPLY a small quick correction with the slip collar because he sits down at least 15 times a day for treats/pats/water etc.

i dont think that is bad.

do you?

Well, to me it's not a matter of "bad" vs. "good" (unless, of course, we're talking about a level of correction that I find abusive, which admittedly probably differs from yours), it's a matter of effective.

For me effective is not only training certain behaviors reliably, but having the dog engaged and happily doing what you are asking. A shut down dog complying out of force just isn't any fun.

I don't think a fair correction is "bad" if the dog has learned the behavior you're asking of it in the environment you're asking he to do it in, but I would think it was an unfair correction if he knows sit in the house or yard and is then asked to sit on a busy streets and can't do it. Environment counts for a whole lot.

why do i think he flips out at other dogs...

i think its partially territorial because he pees on absolutely everything he can when we have our "non-work" walks in the afternoon. neighbors fences etc.


i think its anxiety because he wants to go greet and i dont allow him to

i think its excitement because he loves to play with other dogs, but walk time is NOT play time with the doggies walking by.



Okay, so have you ever tried working on each of these things individually?
Have you tried walking in different areas that he doesn't see as "his"?
Have you practiced, in a low distraction, controlled setting, having your dog stay calm to earn the reward of getting to meet other dogs (maybe with some friends or something)?
Have you figured out what is of greater value to him than going to greet another dog so you can use it to keep focus on you?:shrug:

bendyfoot
July 31st, 2008, 03:36 PM
This is all interesting reading. I just want to say that, if my dog ever lunged at a child, or another dog for that matter, she would be flattened so fast she wouldn't know what happened. By "flattened" I don't meant "hit", "hurt", or "knock down".
To give a specific example, when Gracie attacked Jaida when she was a puppy (not corrected, not played, but full-on attacked), I grabbed Gracie with both hands on the scruff, put her on her back, kneeled over her chest, held both cheeks with my hands and gave her a firm blast of royal *$#%^. I didn't really care WHAT the reason was for the behaviour or what her perception was of the "problem", it was unacceptable and I wanted to make it very clear that I was VERY displeased by it and that it would stop RIGHT NOW. A minute later, both dogs were lying calmly side by side and being patted. Was it a warm and fuzzy and positive message for Gracie when I had her on her back? Nope. Did I hurt her? Nope. Did I mean business and did she get the message? Yep. Did it hurt her relationship with Jaida? Not at all, they're best of friends. Did it hurt my relationship with Gracie? Not at all, all was forgiven and forgotten within minutes.

I know the question wasn't directed at me, but with leash corrections we are communicating that the behaviour she is exhibiting at that exact moment is inappropriate. As long as Gracie is behaving correctly, she gets praise through the roof, a constant stream of it. But if she stiffens up at the sight of another dog (which she rarely does anymore, she could mostly care less about them now, just gives them a disinterested glance OR a friendly wag!), then she is given a correction to indicate that the behaviour is not appropriate. The moment the behaviour changes to the correct behaviour (which is immediately after the correction), she is rewarded.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 03:42 PM
i have never once in the year i have owned cash been able to keep him calm around another dog when they first meet.

after they have started playing i can get him to do whatever i want, sit lay etc. if we are inside.
if we are outside, i have to wait until he is tired enough for me to get him to put the leash back on.

but first meet and greet is always super high energy excitement; inside or out. he loves playing with other dogs, which i dont mind at all! but when we are walking, its time to walk, not time to play.

the reason i correct his non-compliance if you will, on teh streets is that he will do it for a treat every time. so he decided somewhere a long the line.."no food, no obedience"

sorry, but that will not fly with me. i will not bribe my dog into behaving forever. i will use treats to teach, but he MUST know that listening to me is required at ALL times, not when he decides he should.


i walk all over the place, to answer another question of yours. the only time he shows little interest in other dogs is when he is on his long lead. then the excitement shows, and if the dog is far enough away he will go sniff other things.

but when walking i thought the focus should be 100 percent on the walk, because that is the dogs "job".

is that not true? because it makes sense to me.


Well, to me it's not a matter of "bad" vs. "good" (unless, of course, we're talking about a level of correction that I find abusive, which admittedly probably differs from yours), it's a matter of effective.

For me effective is not only training certain behaviors reliably, but having the dog engaged and happily doing what you are asking. A shut down dog complying out of force just isn't any fun.

I don't think a fair correction is "bad" if the dog has learned the behavior you're asking of it in the environment you're asking he to do it in, but I would think it was an unfair correction if he knows sit in the house or yard and is then asked to sit on a busy streets and can't do it. Environment counts for a whole lot.



Okay, so have you ever tried working on each of these things individually?
Have you tried walking in different areas that he doesn't see as "his"?
Have you practiced, in a low distraction, controlled setting, having your dog stay calm to earn the reward of getting to meet other dogs (maybe with some friends or something)?
Have you figured out what is of greater value to him than going to greet another dog so you can use it to keep focus on you?:shrug:

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 03:54 PM
also, every time he does listen, even if its for coming down the steps so i can tie him out to pee he gets a "good boy" and a nice pat or 2 (or 3 or 4) on the head.

for letting me brush him he gets treats etc.

so he does get rewarded for ALL of the behavior that i like. ALL of it.

dogcatharmony
July 31st, 2008, 05:52 PM
Nevermind comparing dogs to wolves, that is like comparing apples to oranges. A "tamed" dog to another dog, yes they correct pushy bad behavior with a bite to the offending dog without a fight, a mother dog teaches her pups with a bite. A dogs natural correction is a physical correction.....but the attitude is a key. Of course two agitated dogs will fight.

Same as humans.......have you ever been in a situation where you may have taken someone by the arm and said "no, i don't like this". If you go into it calm, cooler heads prevail. If you do it angrily.....the situation escalates and may result in a fight.

I use a prong collar as a training tool. At the beginning of course it was power steering for my dog. ( My dog was brutally attacked by a loose dog three times, just for some background information) But after awhile she didn't care about the correction, she saw a dog and that was it....that dog meant "danger". What my trainer failed to tell me was I needed to back up my correction with my attitude. My trainer was sure around dogs, she had 20 some years with handling dogs, she had the right attitude. My trainer didn't realize how nervous I got inside when confronted with a possible situation. Sure I could correct my dog but I was still waiting for something bad to happen. Mixed messages......my dog couldn't act fearful and protective...but I could.

I still use the prong collar for training but I have changed my attitude. At the first sign of unwanted behavior (not already into focusing on what she doesn't like) a correction is given. I know with my dog the first sign is tippy toes with a slight lowering of her head. I don't even bother with the "what ifs", this is the way I am going and this is how I am going and I expect you to follow is my attitude. We now have successfully walked by things that would send her into a frenzy before with nothing. Our biggest challenge is a husky that likes to lunge, and the owner walks him on one of those retractable leashes and then physically assaults the dog because he lunges.

So is a tug on the neck to bring focus as brutal as the other dog owner hitting their dog? My dog use to exhibit the same behavior........I would never physically beat her. But I do use a controversial training tool........so which is the greater evil???

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 06:27 PM
i agree about the attitude and energy behind the correction.


i had started to get nervous just walking my dog with a halti, because he had gone loose so many times.

with this new collar i know he wont get loose, and it is GREAT peace of mind to have.

dogs vs wolves may be apples to oranges but the genes are there, the pack mentality is there too isnt it?


the owner with the lunging dog that he walks on a flexi sounds like a real winner...:wall::censored::censored::censored::cens ored::censored:

hitting a dog is so not cool at all. what a tough guy he must be:censored::censored::censored::yell::yell::yell:




Nevermind comparing dogs to wolves, that is like comparing apples to oranges. A "tamed" dog to another dog, yes they correct pushy bad behavior with a bite to the offending dog without a fight, a mother dog teaches her pups with a bite. A dogs natural correction is a physical correction.....but the attitude is a key. Of course two agitated dogs will fight.

Same as humans.......have you ever been in a situation where you may have taken someone by the arm and said "no, i don't like this". If you go into it calm, cooler heads prevail. If you do it angrily.....the situation escalates and may result in a fight.

I use a prong collar as a training tool. At the beginning of course it was power steering for my dog. ( My dog was brutally attacked by a loose dog three times, just for some background information) But after awhile she didn't care about the correction, she saw a dog and that was it....that dog meant "danger". What my trainer failed to tell me was I needed to back up my correction with my attitude. My trainer was sure around dogs, she had 20 some years with handling dogs, she had the right attitude. My trainer didn't realize how nervous I got inside when confronted with a possible situation. Sure I could correct my dog but I was still waiting for something bad to happen. Mixed messages......my dog couldn't act fearful and protective...but I could.

I still use the prong collar for training but I have changed my attitude. At the first sign of unwanted behavior (not already into focusing on what she doesn't like) a correction is given. I know with my dog the first sign is tippy toes with a slight lowering of her head. I don't even bother with the "what ifs", this is the way I am going and this is how I am going and I expect you to follow is my attitude. We now have successfully walked by things that would send her into a frenzy before with nothing. Our biggest challenge is a husky that likes to lunge, and the owner walks him on one of those retractable leashes and then physically assaults the dog because he lunges.

So is a tug on the neck to bring focus as brutal as the other dog owner hitting their dog? My dog use to exhibit the same behavior........I would never physically beat her. But I do use a controversial training tool........so which is the greater evil???

luckypenny
July 31st, 2008, 06:39 PM
why do correction based training methods have such a bad rep??

One answer would be, it's not the method, but whether or not it's applied correctly. If it's not working, then it's either not being used properly or, does not have an effect on a particular dog as we know that not all dogs are alike.

Another answer may be, if using a non-punishing type of training (again, if applied correctly), and this method works, then why not continue rather than rely on a "correction based method"?

Personally, I have an aversion to physically correcting my dogs. That's not to say that I don't correct them, rather that I don't have to make an experience unpleasant for them to obtain the desired behavior. I simply refuse to wait for something 'bad' to happen. If I know what will set a dog off, then I'll focus on prevention, not wait for something displeasing to occur before I act.

dogcatharmony
July 31st, 2008, 06:44 PM
sorry kigndano.....the apples to oranges comment was just meant for the arguement of wild against domestic. I have heard it all in trying to find out what works for my girl......so I just try to cover my arse.

Just to let you know, I have spoken to the guy with the husky about how he hits his dog. I do it without my dog being present because it angers me so much and she doesn't need to be around that kind of anger. It is hard to walk by when she is with me, but I am training my dog right at that time and want to avoid aggressiveness. Doesn't mean his behavior is not reported after.

I have to say I hope you can find the right combination of training for Cash. It has taken me almost a year now to properly introduce my girl to other dogs. There is a way but it is a long way, definitely not an overnight fix. At the beginning I didn't even think it was possible, but we had our first ever full out play date with 2 other dogs just last weekend. It was so nice for both of us to come home happy.....and so nice to see her run and interact with other dogs again and just have some good fun.

dogcatharmony
July 31st, 2008, 07:13 PM
Personally, I have an aversion to physically correcting my dogs. That's not to say that I don't correct them, rather that I don't have to make an experience unpleasant for them to obtain the desired behavior. I simply refuse to wait for something 'bad' to happen. If I know what will set a dog off, then I'll focus on prevention, not wait for something displeasing to occur before I act.

If you had to physically correct your dog.....do you feel that you are doing something to hurt your dog??

I am just curious because when I apply a leash prong correction to my dog she does not yelp out in pain, she does not act fearful. It is a quick flick of the wrist with a firm verbal "NO", my dog looks at me. And we continue. Same as inside without a prong on. Dog goes to attack the front window because strange dog is outside, I interupt behaviour with a grab to the collar and down motion. She doesn't yelp, cry in pain.

I honestly do believe some people have such an adversion to physical correction because their dog has never exhibited a behavior that would make them do it. I had a dog behaviorist tell me to put my dog down because she was aggresive. If I would have followed that person's advice my dog would be dead right now. How is that for abuse???

I took another professionals advice, one that didn't see a dead end for my dog.....and with hours of hard work from both me and my dog we have now reached a point where she can be a dog again. I am not saying to go out and try this on your own.......but there is a chance that a dog can learn to be a dog again......with correction not abuse.

To say oh well your dog doesn't respond to food, or clicker(positive response training), or halti training well then.....you have a problem. I am speaking from experience, I have been there holding a non responsive aggressive dog on a 6 foot leash, I have held my dog bleeding from a non provoked dog attack and dealt with the aftermath.

There is another side that some dog owners have to deal with. It's not all rainbows dealing with a dog that has problems, deeper problems than learning how to sit, down and come. Sometimes steak doesn't fly in those situations.

TeriM
July 31st, 2008, 07:27 PM
I think there is definately a middle road to both methods. Interestingly I just had this conversation with my trainer about Riley. He has recently starting exhibiting some agressive type behaviors and we were talking about various methods to deal with him. The classes we took with her were all very positive but now Riley is reached a size and age where he seems to think that he can be the boss. Unless I keep him half starved, he won't respect a bribe. He needs to be taught that his behaviour is not acceptable. I am not talking about physical abuse but using my body, the collar and leash are all tools that can enforce a correction and redirect his attention.

Kingdano, an excellent tool I was taught this past weekend is when he got all dominant and snarly toward another dog I walked into the side of him and kept moving that way until he swung his back end around around and faced me with his back to the other dog. He was then rewarded and praised.

luckypenny
July 31st, 2008, 08:06 PM
If you had to physically correct your dog.....do you feel that you are doing something to hurt your dog??

That's not really the point I'm trying to make :shrug: . If using leash corrections works for you and your dog, then by all means, I'm no one to judge.

I don't have all perfect dogs either. All three are rescues and I have no real knowledge of their past. I have one who can be extremely anxious and used to pull hard on leash, one who is reactive aggressive, and another who, thankfully, is just a normal dog.

Leash corrections made the first cower and attempt to 'escape,' and increased the level of aggression of the second. I only wish they would have just looked at me and continued on our way. It simply did not work for my dogs. However, desensitization and reconditioning does.

It's just different methods to get the same results. I guess whatever one is comfortable with, and if it's working, then great. But if one finds themselves repeatedly using physical corrections, and it's not addressing nor solving the issues, then yes, that's when I'll say "you've got a problem."

TeriM
July 31st, 2008, 08:35 PM
Good points LP :thumbs up. I do know that when Riley has his reactions then my initial reaction was to yell at him and push him into a down which obviously isn't very effective. He then feeds off my tension and that doesn't help anyone. Once I was shown that technique above (walking sideways into his space until he yields his butt away from his target) I was quite astonished and pleased at how after a few attempts that seemed to take him right down to a much calmer state.

I think it is just important that everyone remembers what works for one dog will not always work for the other :shrug:. A physical correction can shut down a fear agressive or submissive dog but will have a completely different effect on a confident dog.

I am meeting with a trainer on Saturday this week to watch her class and have her meet Riley and I am very much looking forward to learning some new stuff.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 08:50 PM
my dog doesnt have a problem playing with other dogs, i am lucky in that regard.

he just gets SO overexcited that it turns into jumping, lunging back and forth on his leash, and barking, chewing his leash, jumping onto me...its really out of control if i let it escalate.

its awesome that you took so much time and effort to work with your dog by the way, props to you.

i have not ever expected an overnight fix, i mean, hell i used the gl/halti for over a year. that isnt really overnight right?

also LP; what i have been saying since day 1, is that the treats did not work. i tried for several days to get him to acknowledge them, to look at them even. the most he would do would be eat the treat and stay staring at the thing he was fixated on. now what good does that do? what is the message there? "hey cash! good job being a fixated nutjob, heres some food!"

if that isnt the message the dog gets, i dunno, you tell me what you think it is.

now, if i brought out treats and his eyes snapped to mine like they do inside awesome! but they dont, snap to mine, he doesnt even look at the treat when he eats it.

i dont know if you dont believe me or what the deal is, but i didnt get a dog thinking..."oh boy a dog! now i can buy a prong collar! YES!"

i did all my OB with treats, like ive said, i ended every single session on a good note like people told me to. but walking my dog is just a completely different world. trust me, i would not be trying to alpha roll a big dog like a mal for :censored: and giggles, its not high on my to-do list to possibly get bitten by my own dog.

dogcatharmony
July 31st, 2008, 08:55 PM
Please don't think I am judging anyone.......there are so many different ways to train your dog and everyone has their opinion. Sometimes opinions get a little heated when it involves hands on training.

I know I have tried a few different methods but with my dog and my situation, she needs to be brought back to focusing on me right then and now. I have been reading Kigndano's threads on training tools they have tried. I haven't wanted to post anything because I remember when I first asked the same advice and got roasted for almost the same thing.

Not all situations are the same, and not all training will work for all dogs. And for those who haven't had their dog show unbelievable bad behavior, be thankful. I have a hard time telling someone using a physical correction is wrong because I have been there and done that.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 08:58 PM
i agree 100%

i will try that out next time cash gets fixated...(probly tomorrow AM haha)

so let me make sure i get the idea

the dog snaps his head to something and starts getting tense..i walk into his side?
as in the side next to my leg?

then he looks up at me and i pet him and good boy?


what if when i walk into him he reacts by jumping on me? i have to correct that right?

he does that sometimes...i correct, he disagrees...(what else is new) and then starts jumping, so i correct again.

also great point abotu identifying the energy of your dog!

my dog is extremely confident, he walks very proudly with his head high and tail up. recently in the house i have seen more submissive body language which is so nice to see...head low...tail even with body or hanging loose...nice gentle strolling about the house...so nice!

when we get outside hes still very alert/dominant. i dont mind the alertness...but it leads into what i described above. (hissy fits)

i do not have a fearful dog in ANY way...except for stairs....and shiny floors...

the stairs i dont get, he is good at some, not at others...

shiny floors he used to slip on as a pup, but i am making an effort to work on his "come" when i am in the kitchen so he has to wlak on it to get his treat...things like that.


anyhoo, awesome point re: identifying the state of your dog!

Good points LP :thumbs up. I do know that when Riley has his reactions then my initial reaction was to yell at him and push him into a down which obviously isn't very effective. He then feeds off my tension and that doesn't help anyone. Once I was shown that technique above (walking sideways into his space until he yields his butt away from his target) I was quite astonished and pleased at how after a few attempts that seemed to take him right down to a much calmer state.

I think it is just important that everyone remembers what works for one dog will not always work for the other :shrug:. A physical correction can shut down a fear agressive or submissive dog but will have a completely different effect on a confident dog.

I am meeting with a trainer on Saturday this week to watch her class and have her meet Riley and I am very much looking forward to learning some new stuff.

jessi76
July 31st, 2008, 08:59 PM
Frankly, I don't feel harsh physical correction is what mother nature intended. I don't have issue with a firm "reminder" flick of the leash, or a firm grasp to the collar to prevent incident, sometimes it's the only responsible thing to do.

I do prefer to live with RESPECT though. I am NOT a pack of wolves. We do not live like a pack of wolves (contrary to popular belief sometimes :rolleyes:). I am fully aware of who and what I am, and so is my dog. But, by the same token, I am aware of WHO and WHAT he is too. It took us a good long time to get to that point. alot of hard work went into building our relationship. Thankfully though, now, no training tools are needed.

Tools are useful, but I believe they should be used as tools, not as forever solutions. They should help you immediately control the situation, so that you can create a more respectful relationship and move forward. I don't think one should assume the dog should learn FROM the tool. The dog should learn from YOU, the tool should only help you temporarily.

Note - I have had the advantage of raising my dog since 8 wks old, hence my training methods (positive only) have been in place the entire time. I understand those of you who have opened your homes and hearts to older rescue dogs with deep behavioral issues already in place. I'm in no way suggesting it's as easy as I say for everyone. But for those of us who have had our dogs since early puppyhood, I do believe correction based training can be avoided.

kigndano... The key to meet & greets, in my own experience, is constant practice. My dog was a nutcase too the first few hundred times we tried this, BUT we kept at it. He fully embarrassed me a few times, he'd jump, hump, and thump his way through a greeting... oy! However, with continued practice, we can now successfully do a "first name, last name" (head sniff, butt sniff) and be on our way. it simply takes time, MANY willing participants, maturity, humility, and encouragement. I'm glad you've found something to help you achieve your training goals, but I'd like someday to read that you no longer need such tools, that you've reached a level of respect and control with your dog.

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 09:05 PM
what you just said there...

'They should help you immediately control the situation, so that you can create a more respectful relationship and move forward."

That is EXACTLY what the illusion is doing, i can immediately STOP his hissy fits, and continue walking when he is relaxed...instead of before..where i was waiting out his hissy fit, hoping he didnt get loose, not getting through to him at all, and making NO progress. 1 year and no improvement in behaviour!

i also would like to point out, i never said harsh physical correction, i said simply correction (ie leash pop side tap etc)

thanks for the meet and greet advice too.:thumbs up


Frankly, I don't feel harsh physical correction is what mother nature intended. I don't have issue with a firm "reminder" flick of the leash, or a firm grasp to the collar to prevent incident, sometimes it's the only responsible thing to do.

I do prefer to live with RESPECT though. I am NOT a pack of wolves. We do not live like a pack of wolves (contrary to popular belief sometimes :rolleyes:). I am fully aware of who and what I am, and so is my dog. But, by the same token, I am aware of WHO and WHAT he is too. It took us a good long time to get to that point. alot of hard work went into building our relationship. Thankfully though, now, no training tools are needed.

Tools are useful, but I believe they should be used as tools, not as forever solutions. They should help you immediately control the situation, so that you can create a more respectful relationship and move forward. I don't think one should assume the dog should learn FROM the tool. The dog should learn from YOU, the tool should only help you temporarily.

Note - I have had the advantage of raising my dog since 8 wks old, hence my training methods (positive only) have been in place the entire time. I understand those of you who have opened your homes and hearts to older rescue dogs with deep behavioral issues already in place. I'm in no way suggesting it's as easy as I say for everyone. But for those of us who have had our dogs since early puppyhood, I do believe correction based training can be avoided.

kigndano... The key to meet & greets, in my own experience, is constant practice. My dog was a nutcase too the first few hundred times we tried this, BUT we kept at it. He fully embarrassed me a few times, he'd jump, hump, and thump his way through a greeting... oy! However, with continued practice, we can now successfully do a "first name, last name" (head sniff, butt sniff) and be on our way. it simply takes time, MANY willing participants, maturity, humility, and encouragement. I'm glad you've found something to help you achieve your training goals, but I'd like someday to read that you no longer need such tools, that you've reached a level of respect and control with your dog.

jessi76
July 31st, 2008, 09:21 PM
what you just said there...

'They should help you immediately control the situation, so that you can create a more respectful relationship and move forward."

That is EXACTLY what the illusion is doing, i can immediately STOP his hissy fits, and continue walking when he is relaxed...instead of before..where i was waiting out his hissy fit, hoping he didnt get loose, not getting through to him at all, and making NO progress. 1 year and no improvement in behaviour!

do you think in perhaps 3-4 weeks you'll be able to start trying to walk without using the illusion collar? yes, it should help for the immediate, but I think all the while you should be working towards the goal of a flat collar. Have you implemented any other training along with it? for instance, after you stop his hissy fit, do you actively work on a "watch me" command and reward that? (reward can be continuing the walk, not necessarily a food item)

kigndano
July 31st, 2008, 09:30 PM
i have not yet worked on a watch me type of command, right now all my focus is on getting my timing to be 2nd nature so i CAN focus on other things eventually.


being a new dog owner, this is a crash coruse, but i am cramming every walk to learn as much as i can and try to reapply it the next day.

once i feel that every fixation (or close to it) is identified quickly by me, and corrected on time and gets the reaction i want, i will start to associate a command such as "leave it" immediately following the correction.

3-4 weeks might be too soon to take it off...and whats the harm in him wearing it if no corrections are applied?

when theres no correction it just feels like a normal collar anyways..so whats the big deal if i leave it on him and if offers me peace of mind?

do you think in perhaps 3-4 weeks you'll be able to start trying to walk without using the illusion collar? yes, it should help for the immediate, but I think all the while you should be working towards the goal of a flat collar. Have you implemented any other training along with it? for instance, after you stop his hissy fit, do you actively work on a "watch me" command and reward that? (reward can be continuing the walk, not necessarily a food item)

bendyfoot
August 1st, 2008, 09:19 AM
I still use the prong collar for training but I have changed my attitude. At the first sign of unwanted behavior (not already into focusing on what she doesn't like) a correction is given. I know with my dog the first sign is tippy toes with a slight lowering of her head. I don't even bother with the "what ifs", this is the way I am going and this is how I am going and I expect you to follow is my attitude. We now have successfully walked by things that would send her into a frenzy before with nothing. Our biggest challenge is a husky that likes to lunge, and the owner walks him on one of those retractable leashes and then physically assaults the dog because he lunges.

Yeah, keeping calm is sooo important. I always try to imagine that my feelings are being conducted down the leash into her collar and if my anxiety level is high, she'll feel the same way.



I think it is just important that everyone remembers what works for one dog will not always work for the other :shrug:. A physical correction can shut down a fear agressive or submissive dog but will have a completely different effect on a confident dog.


Totally agree about this. Gracie is confidence incarnate, physical corrections bring her attention back to me. Jaida is a suck-head and naturally looks to humans for leadership. Never used a prong on her, there's no need to. Very mild flat-collar re-direction during obedience training is all that's been needed with her.

Whoever mentioned the benefits of having a puppy vs an adult rescue is bang-on too. Gracie had been returned to the HS twice due to behaviour. We got her when she was about a year old. It was a good year until very basic issues were addressed (aggressive resource guarding, "talking back", dominance towards people...she's the most dominant AND intelligent dog I've ever met)...all those problems are non-existant now. Jaida we've had since 12 weeks old. Very different personality, but also had the benefit of working with her since a young age.

do you think in perhaps 3-4 weeks you'll be able to start trying to walk without using the illusion collar? yes, it should help for the immediate, but I think all the while you should be working towards the goal of a flat collar. Have you implemented any other training along with it? for instance, after you stop his hissy fit, do you actively work on a "watch me" command and reward that? (reward can be continuing the walk, not necessarily a food item)

It's great to work towards the flat collar as a goal (although, yeah, with the illusion I don't really see the big deal about using that). I wanted to brag a litle...kinda :offtopic::sorry:...I took Gracie on a run last night down our road with her flat collar on. We had to pass a house with "the scary dog"...a big black dog that rivals Gracie in dominant body language, and she always barks/growls whenever Kim and I walk or bike by (we're in the country so all the dogs are loose on people's properties). I passed this house deliberately yesterday to use the opportunity to work with Gracie.

It was awesome. As we approached the house, I put her in a heel and kept her attention on me using "watch me". The other dog spotted us, started to freak out. I told Gracie she could break the heel, and let her leash be loose. I calmly carried on with my run and told Gracie she was a good girl. She very politely circled away from the freaking out dog, and didn't make eye contact. Of course, she decided that she had to poop right at that moment, right in front of the house. After she was done, I put her in a down, she complied right away and looked away from the mean dog. When I finished cleaning up, we just jogged off. No incident, no correction needed, and she was very relaxed and simply trusting me to take care of things. We later met up with an ancient mal mix (deaf I'm sure and very scraggly-looking) who always hangs out in the middle of the road. Gracie, on loose leash, politely approached and had a quick sniff, and we were on our way. This NEVER would have been possible without using the prong as an intial training tool, of this I have no doubt, there would have been two dog fights.

kigndano
August 1st, 2008, 09:37 AM
bragging is OK!

its a lot of work to get to that point, and it always feels good to vocalize ANY progress!

great work bendy!:thumbs up

14+kitties
August 1st, 2008, 10:28 AM
IMO it comes down to just one thing.... Do we want the dog to love us or fear us? :shrug:

bendyfoot
August 1st, 2008, 10:39 AM
thanks kigndano!

There IS life after prong collars, and nutjob-psycho-freakout dogs CAN be trained!:cloud9: Major props have to go to our trainer, Marty, though. The man was a genius. It was a lot of hard work for all of us.

bendyfoot
August 1st, 2008, 10:45 AM
Gracie doesn't fear me...she now respects me and trusts me to take care of her in high-charged situations... she no longer feels or thinks she has to take control or be on the offensive/attack when something's around that poses a challenge to her authority...because she knows I'M the boss and I'll take care of the situation and not let any harm come to her. She is more relaxed, calm, content and displays fewer OCD behaviours (licking, pacing, watching windows, etc.) because she knows her job is to relax and let me handle things. It's all about trust. She's always loved me, but now we have an even stronger relationship. I definitely want my dogs to love me, and would NEVER do anything to betray that love...but neither do I want to be ruled by a dog or allow her to become a prisoner in her own home for fear that her aggression would lead to her being destroyed.

I understand the desire to use positive training methods at all times, I really do, but as I and others have stated, not all training methods work with all dogs...not only that, no single training method can be used to train/discourage all behaviours in a single dog.

And until you've had to deal with that particular dog with those particular behaviours, it's not entirely fair to judge the training methods used. (Obviously I say that with a caveat, I think we all agree that beating or using harsh correction methods is wrong...although I suppose some of us disagree on the definition of "harsh")

If correction-based training works for a particular dog for particular behaviours in a positive way when all other methods have failed, it is worth exploring. I too had people telling me that Gracie would never successfully beat her dog aggression and that we'd never be able to allow her near another canine. We had to find the tools and training methods that worked best for Gracie for each of her training/behaviour issues. We used NILFF for the resource guarding and initial establishment of our relationship (a long, arduous and stressful process, but ultimately successful). We use positive reinforcement (praise, pats) for her obedience work, and she LOVES to work for that, she positively struts and glows when she's working. We used the prong to address her most serious issue, the dog aggression, because nothing, and I mean NOTHING else could distract her from aggressing. Using the prong as a tool, along with positive reinforcement of polite social behaviour, lots of practice, and further reinforcement of our relationship, was what allowed me to bring another dog in our home, what gave her the abillity to enjoy the company of our neighbour's dogs (whom she previously attacked) and what let me go for a nice run with her last night. If we had not explored this option, Gracie (and her people) would be living very isolated existences.

Lissa
August 1st, 2008, 11:05 AM
IMO, correction based methods have a bad rep for 4 reasons:
1. they are often applied incorrectly/used improperly
2. enough research has been done into learning theory and how dogs learn that force is not necessary, let alone desirable
3. corrections are reactive - you have to wait for bad behaviour to happen (self-rewarding) before you issue a correction
4. corrections = force = compliance out of fear/pain/discomfort

Also, I think that many people supporting compulsion training do not understand positive reinforcement or how to apply it. Personally, I find it very hard to support corrections in most scenarios because I know that methods that don't rely on force were not tried or applied correctly.

Our previous dog was trained using old school force based methods - corrections and a choker as a puppy (not by me obviously). Was she well-behaved? Yes. But I never saw her express joy in learning/problem solving the way that clicker trained dogs do. She was robotic in response to her obedience commands - she knew what was expected of her and always complied but there was no spark or desire to please. She complied to avoid corrections not because she wanted to.

Dodger is the complete opposite...he is probably more independent, aloof and harder to motivate than most dogs (I have never met another dog that rivals Dodger's independence)... And yet he has been trained almost entirely with positive methods. Does that mean permissive? Absolutely not. Does that mean I have never issued a correction? Absolutely not. But my kind of correction is removing something that my dog wants (which means that he is in control).

kigndano
August 1st, 2008, 11:25 AM
glad everyone is able to share their POV here.

Lissa
August 1st, 2008, 08:52 PM
glad everyone is able to share their POV here.

Me too!:lovestruck:

I also have to add and this is not meant to start an argument, it is just an observation that came up in conversation the other day.

I (and many +R supporters) do not walk around with rewards or clickers 24/7. I can take Dodger anywhere (for a walk, to the store, car ride, vet) - all without "bribes". Whereas most people who use compulsion methods or training tools cannot leave their house without them!
IMO, it seems more limiting to not be able to leave your house without correcting your dog or putting on a training tool than it is to use minimal rewards on a variable reinforcement schedule in the beginning stages of learning.

MIA
August 1st, 2008, 09:52 PM
I think at the end of the day you need to do what works for you and your dog. I have now had the pleasure of working with so many dogs that I can really say that not one thing works. Also the word correction shouldn't be so ugly per say, a correction isn't necessarily a nasty thing, it can be a very simple thing too. I have learned most training methods, studied mostly all but clicker as well attended tons of seminars and at the end of the day you need to find what will be best for your situation. I mostly work with very naughty dogs that will be PTS so I have the challenge of finding what will motivate the dog to come out of it's nasty shell and behave like a good dog, rescue has taught me so much mainly it's taught me, no dog is the same and there is no cookie cutter solutions.

So go with what you like and what you see working for your dog, without abuse of course but don't discredit a method that may work for someone who you haven't met. I remember a lady giving me heck because I had my rescue dobe on a prong well, if I didn't there was no way I could control her, after she dragged me across a park that was that until I could get her trained!!! I handed the lady the leash and said, would you like to rehabilitate her for me? I just got her off death row!!! Remember you don't know what people are going through and what measures they have or need to take.