The Koehler Method of Dog Training - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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The Koehler Method of Dog Training

The Koehler Method of Dog Training,The Koehler Method of Dog Training, koehlerdogtraining.com Home


I usually only start threads on stuff I understand or have done! This I find interesting but honestly I can't understand this?? I feel that there is "something here??" But it's out of my league!

So I'm just putting it out here! Let the debate begin!
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post #2 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 08:42 PM
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It's the "old fashioned,old school" training method.It involves a choke chain training collar and corrections to teach the dog what not to do.An oversimplification I admit.

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post #3 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 09:08 PM
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LOL! They use the term "throw chain" instead of "choke chain" or "choker."

Yes, the method has been around forever, and most of us who have been around awhile have deliberately or inadvertently use the methods. They do work.

Just because something has been around forever and gives results, does not mean there aren't better overall methods for training dogs.

Dog training works when the communication is effective. If the dog understands that what he just did was what you want, he is likely to repeat it. Communication includes timing, praise, reward, body language. A lot of dog training is training/disciplining the handler. If you can make your body do the same routine, the dog is going to learn much quicker. If you can make your body language work to cause a dog to naturally perform the desired trait, training becomes much easier.

For example, raising the treat up above the dog's head so that to follow it, his hind quarters must go down, and the sit is accomplished. That movement of your hand becomes the sign for sit, and it is close to natural -- this is not the Koehler method.

The Koehler Method works because it is repetitious and consistent. The idea of repeating something 25x every night is ridiculous though.

I just think there are better ways to bond with your dog and teach him what is expected. Choke chains have their place. I have used them in shows where corrections are not allowed. Once the dog is trained, a martingale or a choke chain can be interchangeable. Training a dog with a choke can cause damage...

Interesting what they say about e-collars.

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post #4 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 09:54 PM
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The Koehler method is compulsion based training.

A throw chain isn't a collar. Its literally a piece of chain (like a wadded up training collar) that you throw at a dog to "reinforce" your command.

Koehler also advocated hanging a dog by the leash for noncompliance or fighting back. And yeah, hanging means just that.

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post #5 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 10:05 PM
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They do use choke chains though. I couldn't find mention of one on the site, only the throw chain.

I know they used to choke a dog out on a choke chain, seriously until the dog passes out.

Of course when the prong collar people tested dogs to see which causes more damage, if they were choking dogs out with the choke chains, yeah that's going to cause all kinds of damage. Jerking action on the choke chain can throw a dog out of alignment, and yeah, it is compulsion, but as codmaster always seemed to say, you compel a dog in positive training as well. Holding a treat over the dog's head compels the dog to sit his butt on the ground, if he is food motivated.

But I understand what you mean by compulsion.

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post #6 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 10:07 PM
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were the dogs harder then, that those harsher corrective measures were necessary? Or did those methods soften the dogs to make them submissive so we see it in generations later....I know the training methods of the past were not what the AR's would ever approve of. I remember Clover's obedience class handout suggested hitting the dog with a newspaper if the dog pottied in the house. That was early '90's and they also said to rub the nose in it after the newspaper hit....lol, this was the local dog training club with many people training this way. Make the dog submit to the alpha, and don't engage the dog in tug because that will make a dog aggressive...blah, blah blah.

Makes me wonder if nerves were compromised by certain unnecessary methods of training, and then the dogs bred had the pups feed off that anxiety which after a generation or two of those training methods made them a bit on edge/showing in the progeny.

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post #7 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 10:38 PM
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I think too many of the positive trainers are just permissive and dogs are really wigged out because they can't feel any confidence in their owners. It is too darn bad that dogs would be happier in a compulsive but consistent situation, than in a positive but permissive situation. Dogs maybe are worse, but too many people just do not know how to act around a dog much less raise a puppy.

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post #8 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 11:07 PM
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He's old school. Nothing wrong with that per se but I prefer prongs and e collars to chokes and using more guidance in the form of negative reinforcement before I start anything more punitive. Lots of good stuff still to be gleaned from the guy, but theres stuff out there with more finesse and tact.
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post #9 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 12:04 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baillif View Post
He's old school. Nothing wrong with that per se but I prefer prongs and e collars to chokes and using more guidance in the form of negative reinforcement before I start anything more punitive. Lots of good stuff still to be gleaned from the guy, but theres stuff out there with more finesse and tact.
Aww finesse and tact! Works with Boxers and works with GSD's!

Pretty sure koehler is the origin of the K9 trainer that once said "he can train 3 GSD's in the time it takes to train one Boxer!"

As I find Boxers amazingly easy to work with (the males) anyway, the girls...well as the sung goes...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PIb6AZdTr-A

Yeah I went there! Boxer thing!

I'll try again found another site "off leash training."
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post #10 of 138 (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 11:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeoRose View Post
The Koehler method is compulsion based training.

A throw chain isn't a collar. Its literally a piece of chain (like a wadded up training collar) that you throw at a dog to "reinforce" your command.

Koehler also advocated hanging a dog by the leash for noncompliance or fighting back. And yeah, hanging means just that.
Koehlers methods for behavior modification were harsh, but keep in mind that back then the options for an out of control dog were, well, death.

His training methods are based on the fact that your dog has a right to know that his actions have consequences. He also stated quite clearly that any modification of his methods to make it 'nicer' would result in it being cruel and unjust. He talks about prongs in his book, and does advocate their use, but not as a first step.
I was mentored by a Koehler student, and while it does not work well for me the flaw is with me not the system. It is my go to method for 'hard' or excessively resistant dogs. His method of teaching heel is my favorite and I routinely use his long line methods.
His methods are still widely used today, and no other method has had such success on so many dogs.

I believe that all tools are good tools. Dogs are not all the same, and some learn better a different way. But to dismiss something that has had so much success is just silly. The method has been tried and proven, repeatedly. Bill Koehler was an accomplished trainer with credits and credentials that would be tough to beat and the dogs he worked certainly were not cowering or fearful.
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