German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
614 Posts
While I don't have any direct experience with this method myself. I have been able to read quite a bit about it online as well. What I see here is mostly a buzz word type title applied to known training principles, though ones used in a new venue perhaps.

I would not assume the just because they use "Constructional Aggression Management" That they will be more successful or a better trainer than anyone who doesn't use that title.

In other words judge the trainer by how they treat the dog and how your dog reacts to working with them rather than the use of a "special training program"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
614 Posts
Exactly!!! If you can brand it though you can make a lot of money off of it. Nothing wrong with that we as consumers just have to be aware of it and make sure we aren't overpaying for the "brand name" when the generic is just as good.

Heck look at the 'Dog Whisperer' nothing revolutionary there, he has just managed to brand himself very well. Not knocking him either, great business, and he's increased awareness of training a hundredfold.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,520 Posts
Summary:CAT (Constructional Aggression Treatment) applies operant conditioning for modification of aggressive behavior rather than the more traditional classical counter conditioning and desensitization (CC&D). CAT has stirred debate in the positive training/behavior modification community because it utilizes negative reinforcement. Positive trainers tend to try to use positive reinforcement (dog's behavior makes a good thing happen) and negative punishment (dog's behavior makes a good thing go away), rather than positive punishment (dog's behavior makes a bad thing happen) or negative reinforcement (dog's behavior makes a bad thing go away).

Dr. Rosales-Ruiz suggests that it's not about which principle of operant conditioning is in play, but rather that it's about the dog's emotional state. The intent of CAT is to keep the dog sub-threshold in the presence of the stressful stimulus that triggers an aggressive response - as is done in a good CC&D program as well - in order to change his operant response to a stressor. Especially in the case of dog-aggressive dogs, these are often stressors to which the dog is frequently exposed over-threshold in daily life. The goal is to subject the dog to as little stress as possible while changing the dog's operant response to the stimulus and greatly improving quality of life for dogs and their humans.

A successful CC&D program changes emotional response in order to change behavior. CAT changes behavior in order to change emotional response.

CAT link
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
858 Posts
Pat Miller is doing this in MD (3-day program). I am on the list but I am considering pulling out of it since I was talking to someone who feels it is simply flooding with a new name. I am going to talk to them a bit more about it. If anyone has actually tried it, I would love to hear about their experience.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
224 Posts
Evidently there was an article by Pat Miller in last months Whole Dog Journal regarding CAT if anyone has access to it.

There's also a short video on Dogwise (towards the bottom of the page) that shows how it's used for on leash agression:
http://www.dogwise.com/ItemDetails.cfm?ID=DTB947

I've done some Feisty Fido classes with my girl who has dog aggression issues. One of the exercises we did in class seems to be a version of Cat. Our dogs, while on leash, were also tethered on a long line that was attached to a wall. While we held them on lease, a demo dog was walked past us. If our dog reacted, we were to call them back to us. If they ignored us, we dropped the leash and walked away out of our dog's vision. If they responded to us and ignored the dog, they were rewarded.

This exercise was really a break through for me because Keira isn't food motivated at all but is highly bonded to me. I found during the exercise, if she continued to lunge at the oncoming dog and I walked away, she immediately ignored the other dog and re- focused all her attention on where I had gone. She quickly learned not to ignore me even when she was over a threshold.

While I haven't been able to totally irradiate her on leash aggression, it is much more controllable ands easier to defuse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
858 Posts
Many behaviorists think that flooding leads to inhibited behavior which solves the outward expression of the problem, but not the internal issues. therefore, flooding can often result in a problem which is masked, but still exists and will express itself suddenly, and with more intensity. the other option is habituation which is working at sub threshold and working on the internal issues, without triggering the extreme outward expression. I am not sure if i am explaining this correctly, but basically the drawback of flooding is the high percentage of dogs that revert, sometimes with more aggression than before. This is how it was explained to me, but i really do not know what the stats are (if there are any).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,520 Posts
If our dog reacted, we were to call them back to us. If they ignored us, we dropped the leash and walked away out of our dog's vision.

How would you do this in real life though? You can't just drop the leash and walk away, risking your dog might engage.
There are prob. some dogs wouldn't even realize, that their owner is walking away, or'd care less about it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,197 Posts
Originally Posted By: lawhitePat Miller is doing this in MD (3-day program). I am on the list but I am considering pulling out of it since I was talking to someone who feels it is simply flooding with a new name. I am going to talk to them a bit more about it. If anyone has actually tried it, I would love to hear about their experience.
Did you end up going? Also, what is Pat Miller calling it on her website. I looked and couldn't find anything about it? She is only a few miles from me and Jessie has been to two of her classes. But we were told she is not allowed to go to anymore of them because of her dog aggression issues.

I have read up on CAT and am very excited about it. I see it as the first time this operant training stuff utilizes what's inside "the black box" i.e., uses the dog's emotions to train.

When Jessie and I are both recovered, I would like to give this a stab. I'd love to buy that DVD too but it is $135.00!

Well anyway, if anyone has more info, please pass it on!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
858 Posts
I did not end up doing it. I have been considering it again though, but i am still concerned about the flooding aspect of it. I would love to talk with some of their clients that have done it now that they have a few months of trials under their belt. I have also heard that it doesn't translate well to new environments (true of almost all training) so it might be better (for me) to find someone closer so I can do some work in our territory. If you are close by Pat Miller it might be worth it for you. A friend of mine who is a trainer bought the DVDs and I am going to take a look at them. I will tell you if they are worth $135! However, be prepared.. the CAT with Pat Miller cost $1500!
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top