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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've noticed a trend in online trainers advocating for a repeat of a command during praising or rewarding for said command. An example would be, tell your dog to sit, when she/he complies you say "good sit"!

Do you do that? Have you ever? Is it helpful?

I'm familiar with the practice as it's been used in early childhood education circles for years, and they say it shows significant improvement for lots of kids (and also that you should repeat that 3 times).

But up until recently, had never seen anyone use this with dogs. I'm curious if you all use or have seen improvement using this with your dogs/puppies?
 

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I use it all the time. I particularly like using it for exercises that I'm working on building like during long down I say 'good down' regularly. Or if a distraction sudden appears I say it. It gets in a reinforcing command and praise all in one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I use it all the time. I particularly like using it for exercises that I'm working on building like during long down I say 'good down' regularly. Or if a distraction sudden appears I say it. It gets in a reinforcing command and praise all in one.
So I'm curious, did you always use that, or change to it because you thought it might help?

Not at all being critical one way or the other, just curious! I never have. But I wonder...
 

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I just tend to do this intuitively in early steps of teaching a new command, so mostly with pups or a dog who has no basic training.
I feel it's a bit like (weird image coming) pressing the same key multiple times so you add some ink, as you could do with old typewriters :)
GoodSIT, goooodSIT, making the command bolder in the dog's mind, reinforcing that signal.

Buck is the first dog I had who I couldn't praise at all in the beginning, it forced me to modify that habit. Not that easy when you're so used to praise.
He was so excitable and just wild back then, that any praise would instantly make him break a position because it was too exciting. lol
Once he had more self-control I've been able to introduce mild praise.
 

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My dogs are so different in that respect. My girl is a stocky, slow potatoe you have to hyper-motivate to keep her in working mode.
Whereas Buck is a naturally hyper-motivated dog you have to reinforce very calmly.
Mo looks like a little barrel when she comes back to you, "no rush" lol, Buck looks like an explosive shell, ears and fur flattened, flying full speed.
 

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So I'm curious, did you always use that, or change to it because you thought it might help?

Not at all being critical one way or the other, just curious! I never have. But I wonder...
Honestly it was just a verbal cue that came naturally to me without thinking about the methods or reasons. I didn't research it and decide to use it, I just started saying it.

I use it a lot for stuff I'm proofing and do consciously try to phase it out when her behaviors are more solid.

What are your thoughts on it?
 

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I have used the Good-command but I haven't noticed that my dogs had really paid much attention to it once they had learned the command. It was only during the phase where they were trying to figure out what I wanted that I noticed them really paying attention to the Good-command talk.
 

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It's useful if capturing a random behavior or training a specific new one. The only time I set out to use it is when training a puppy to potty on command. "Go take a break" "Go take a break" initially and when they actually begin eliminating, the whole time I'm saying "Good boy - take a break!!" "Good boy" . It's a little like shaping. Put a name to something while they're doing it and they remember. That's how I taught inside voice. Occasionally, Varik would bark without noise and I said 'inside voice! good inside voice' Now, he does it on command ... and it's hilarious. I've done it for other things as well. Can be useful.
 

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Sometimes. If I’m teaching a behavior or reinforcing, I might. If I’m proofing a command or using it when they are 100%, no. I may repeat heel as we move from one location to another as a reminder, Yes, we are still heeling, so he doesn’t forget and decide to go off for a sniff. My older dog, no, I’m not actively training her anymore. At her age, she can do whatever she likes as long as it’s safe.
 

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I do it when I'm working with young or untrained pups of any age. In those instances, I try to heighten the salience by repeating the command+praise 2 or 3 times ("good sit!"), using the Happy Voice and a big smile, and/or immediately giving a treat; brief applause works well for some dogs too. As the pup grows older, my focus switches to proofing the command and, as it does, I typically switch to a simple, "good" and move on. That approach has always worked well for me with cats, dogs and horses. Not so much with men tho... ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Honestly it was just a verbal cue that came naturally to me without thinking about the methods or reasons. I didn't research it and decide to use it, I just started saying it.

I use it a lot for stuff I'm proofing and do consciously try to phase it out when her behaviors are more solid.

What are your thoughts on it?
Trying to think "like a dog", I think I'd find it a bit confusing. They don't really understand language, after all. So through repetition they learn that "sit" means put your bum on the ground. So if/when I say "good" I don't think they're confused at all about what is good.

But if I say good sit, and they're already sitting, what does sit mean? I guess I just don't see how it could possibly reinforce anything in the dog's mind! And I admit, I could be totally wrong, it just makes no logical sense to me!

With human children who do understand language I can see how it might help. Not just saying it, but repeating it 3 times has been shown to help them learn new concepts more quickly.

So again, I could just be totally wrong! Wouldn't be the first time!
 

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Absolutely. I want the dog to associate the behavior with the praise. I am exceptionally fortunate that I do not have neighbors close enough to hear me praise and repeat during house training.

And you have to consider how long it took Duke to figure out who Duke was; sometimes a big, sweet, happy dog is just not the brightest crayon in the box and a lot of repetition is necessary.
 

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I don't think
"Sit!"
"Good sit"
is any different/better than
"Sit!"
"Good!"
since the dog is responding to the verbal reward not the repeated word.

As you know, a dog can learn sit through luring into position and a head scratch or treat, no words needed at all.

Before we enter a certain field known to house coyotes and/or deer, I have a visual stand/stay signal that I use since I want to be silent and have a chance to see them first and have never used a verbal marker or repeat there. Just repetitive consistency.
 

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I don't think
"Sit!"
"Good sit"
is any different/better than
"Sit!"
"Good!"
since the dog is responding to the verbal reward not the repeated word.
I’m almost positive that if good is used as a reward marker the word used after it doesn’t even register to the dog.
As you know, a dog can learn sit through luring into position and a head scratch or treat, no words needed at all.
This is true, however the dog won’t associate the word with the command or position.
 

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It's the same as "working on duration" though... you're just encouraging the dog to keep doing what they're doing and praise for that.
When I teach stay, increasing distance/distraction level etc., I'll repeat the command when I feel my dog may be loosing focus, and reinforce them for focusing back on what they are doing.
Never did any dog I trained got confused and learn that "GoodCommand" was different from "command".
I never ended up having to say "goodcommand" to have them perform what I asked. lol
 

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I think to a dog "Sit" and "Good Sit" is not the same. Never used it and never needed it. To me it belongs in 'the feel-good positive only, fur baby, pet companion' file.
Really has nothing to do with positive only blah blah blah (didn't feel like typing it all out lol). I don't use good <whatever command> with an adult, but I do use it for a very young puppy when I first start teaching things. Specifically working on shaping, capturing a behavior/action in the act, not obedience commands like sit, down, etc. I've never had any confusion arise from it. It's more a vehicle word conveying excitement about ... whatever. Varik is very easy to shape ... he's just not interested in obedience. That offends his independent, mature guy's sensibilities. Knows them all .. .will do them all ... would prefer NOT to do them. I have never had a more independent, low pack drive GSD in my life. I know .. I'm not a good trainer. LOL The things that Chris Wild has said about DDR dogs are real. ;)
 

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I've never heard of that thank u I will give that a good usually if lola has done good we would tell her good girl and explain why we are praising her. But I think that would also be brilliant to learn her as well.
 
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