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  Topic Review (Newest First)
05-14-2014 10:40 AM
PMRonan I had a dog that wouldn't sit for treat. Not for anything. a tennis ball though? Oh yeah. He didn't want to run after it, he didn't want to chew it. He was wanted to hold it in his mouth for a second. So our training was I would give him the ball, then a series of commands. If he failed the commands i would withdraw the ball hold it for a few minutes and then return it and start over. This is actually punishment training. For him, the most effective training. No beating, no strangling, no screaming. Ball goes away, ball comes back. However I am learning that Jager, my GSD puppy, Is HIGHLY food motivated and have had to cope with that.
05-14-2014 10:32 AM
NancyJ Terminology always messes me up but these are a couple of articles that seem relevant to me on the topic.

The Jerry Bradshaw article was published in Police K9 Magazine and is a pdf document:

And Deb Palmon, also a PDF on the USPCA Site:
05-14-2014 10:26 AM
Baillif Totally agree with you, but

If done properly and tactfully, even with skitish super soft dogs, it is possible to use nothing but "compulsion" training and come out on the other side with a very happy peppy sporty looking dog. We are talking no food no toys no play just emotions and compulsion. Escaping pressure is in itself a reward.

But it is as much of an art form as the extremely good force free trainers. You don't just jump into it willy nilly after reading something on the internet.

Have I done it? Yes. Do I typically do it? No. I prefer to sweeten the deal with food or play.
05-14-2014 10:16 AM
martemchik Sticking my hand in too many training discussions lately, so here goes another one.

If you’re used to training GSDs and mainly WL GSD or anything with some sort of resilience and hardness, it’s interesting when you start working other breeds. It’s almost scary. A “correction” that I think is light for my GSD, can shut down some other dog/breed like you’ve never seen. That’s what most people don’t like to see.

So…if you start with compulsion, it will work, but it can have the ability to work by shutting the dog completely down, making it “obedient” but turning off everything about it that makes it a dog. The dog ends up not wanting to make any kind of decision due to fear of a correction. But…if you start a dog on PO, you tend to get a happier dog, and then if you realize you need a correction, you have a way of testing it or hopefully by that point you understand the dog more and know if the dog can handle that or not.

I see way too many people starting off with crank and yank because its worked for decades…and they’ve seen results but their results aren’t impressive.

Sorry…I’m coming from the AKC world and entering the IPO world so the type of obedience I see is different. And on top of that, when I compare what I see many people consider “obedient pets” it’s very disheartening sometimes.
05-14-2014 09:34 AM
blackshep Yeah, I think the word 'punish' brings a lot of negative associations with it for a lot of people. They assume it means hitting or roughly handling the animal, which is of course, not true for the most part.

Like I said, it's all semantics really.

I also wonder if positive only training would possibly create some stress for the dog. I think sometimes telling them 'no, that's not right' makes things more black and white for them, rather than leave them searching for the right answer.
05-14-2014 09:25 AM
Baillif Right. When I use the term punishment isn't the typical loaded use of the word in the sense of something necessarily super harsh. It's in the scientific use of the word punishment which is by definition any stimulus which when applied following an action decreases the probability of future appearance of that action.

That might be a brow furrow it might be a ah ah it might be a nope or it could be a time out or maybe something considerably stronger than that. If it's doing the job of weakening a behavior it is punishment.
05-14-2014 09:15 AM
Shade When you train there should be a goal in sight that you're working towards, so every action counts. Good things get immediate rewards and bad things get immediate corrections (mine mostly is a simple calm verbal "ah!" to let them know to stop and try again).

It's a lot easier on both trainer and dog if you have a marker. Think about it this way, we're limited in communication so here's a basic rule - do this and you get a positive and do that and you get a negative. Just like the game 'hot and cold' and the more clues (markers) you give to show the right way the easier and faster the reward comes! The jackpot (correct behaviour) at the end is the reward for both parties

When people use the term punishment I think most jump immediately to physical corrections and pain. Thoughts of a screaming human beating the crap out of the dog because it disobeyed the sit command, for 95% of trainers that assumption is completely false
05-14-2014 08:38 AM
Baillif Foster dogs and rescues are usually screened. The dogs that needed it were already given the needle or are labelled unadoptable and slated for it.

Body blocks raised voices and all that jazz are positive punishment enough for a lot of dogs. Then there are the dogs out there that don't give a crap. When all the force free stuff doesn't work they start wondering if the dog needs to be heavily medicated. Then you hear oh the dog isn't wired right put it down.

Done right positive punishment doesn't need to be applied that often. I don't punish my dog all day. It happens very rarely which is a wonder considering what gets asked of him.
05-14-2014 08:09 AM
blackshep I think positive reinforcement is great for teaching a new command, shaping behaviours, for puppies etc but it has to be balanced. At some point, when the dog knows better and chooses to ignore you, you need to correct it (I don't like using the word punish, training shouldn't be about punishing, but it's all semantics, I suppose).

Leerburg | The Problem with All-Positive Dog Training
05-14-2014 08:06 AM
Originally Posted by JeanKBBMMMAAN View Post
Here's a neat article:
How Technology from 30 Years Ago is Helping Military Dogs Perform Better Now | Animal Behavior and Medicine Blog | Dr. Sophia Yin, DVM, MS

They do use aversives - but less than 1/1000th of a time.

Strangely (never thought it was strange until I read how many dogs my kind of methods have killed apparently) I have/had dogs who would be dead and have not used positive punishment with them in terms of any aversives stronger than a verbal, or as in the article above if they put themselves or someone else at risk (rare and usually just dog to dog posturing that needs to be body bumped - something that happens when you live with more than 2 dogs integrated as a pack). So it can be done, easily and naturally. I come from a background of working with people/kids, so using strong aversives is not an option, and it is second nature for me to pick behavioral interventions that are clear and that work. I know it works, I have a pack of dogs and former foster dogs that show it.

If people want to train dogs their way, that's their business, just getting tired of reading all over the place on this board that the way that many of the rest of train, is wrong, dangerous, and doesn't work.

Exactly! No one here trains dogs exactly like someone else. I just don't get why people are so brazen about voicing their unsolicited and unwanted opinions on other people's training?

Just like I personally would not want to send my dog off to a trainer to come back trained. But that is how one of my neighbors makes his living. I like his style of training. it works great. But i don't want to send my dog to him, however, the people that do are doing so because it lines up with their value map to have a professional train their dog so they don't accidentally train them incorrectly.

Some people just can't let others be different.
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