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Discussion Starter #1
Which do you do? Ask for the perfect sit/platz/etc right now and work on speed & attitude later, or ask for a super enthused movement now and work on perfecting the form later?

"Both" isn't an answer :) Fixing one sacrifices the other in the immediate time frame.
 

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Good question! Jax is the first dog I've trained so I'm really interested in the answers. It's kind of like, what came first...the chicken or the egg?
 

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I don't understand why both isn't an answer?

Take a 8 week old puppy and start doing foundation and imprinting. If you have something that motivates him then you should be very easily able to teach him being correct is the only way to gain the reward.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I don't understand why both isn't an answer?

Take a 8 week old puppy and start doing foundation and imprinting. If you have something that motivates him then you should be very easily able to teach him being correct is the only way to gain the reward.
If you super enthusiasticly ask for a platz, and get a sloppy one... if you treat right now, you have answered "attitude", if you correct the form in any way and hold out on that treat, you've hurt his attitude and answered "correctness". You can work on both... certainly you have a threshold for how sloppy a platz you will allow. ALso, you can get both in the end of course, but you've got to start somewhere.

Take three dogs.
I train one for a week only caring about attitude
I train one for a week only caring about correctness
I train one for a week working on both

Dog 1 will seem the most interested in the work, Dog 2 will be flawless but seem less happy about it, and dog three will be neither. Eventually they will all end up in the same place with the proper training and enough time.

There isn't a right/wrong answer.
 

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ask for a super enthused movement now and work on perfecting the form later?
First the drive and enthusiasm then the behavior for me!!! I want them to love to learn and do first of all. Then when the 'boring' exactness comes into play in the training they will still want to be 'in the game' and willing to learn!
 

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When I take a dog who is motivated by a reward and ask him to "platz" and when he doesn't I say "fooey" and move. He doesn't get a reward but I don't see a loss in drive or attitude. Instead I see an increase. The dog wonders why he is not getting a reward and trys harder.

The flaw with all of this is that by the time I'm asking my dog to front or "platz in motion" he's not sloppy. I don't mind correcting it because I'm not teaching it anymore.
 

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Then by the definition set by hunterisgreat, you are NOT doing both. You are training for correctness, not attitude.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
When I take a dog who is motivated by a reward and ask him to "platz" and when he doesn't I say "fooey" and move. He doesn't get a reward but I don't see a loss in drive or attitude. Instead I see an increase. The dog wonders why he is not getting a reward and trys harder.

The flaw with all of this is that by the time I'm asking my dog to front or "platz in motion" he's not sloppy. I don't mind correcting it because I'm not teaching it anymore.
Thats a bit more complex. First, if he flat doesn't obey the command then its thats predating my entire question. I'm talking about the dog actually doing the platz... either perfectly, or not so much perfect. I'm focusing on a very specific piece of the training

The increase in drive or attitude is because you've now loaded the dog with "positive stress". This is a separate concept from what I'm talking about.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I understand that.

My point is he is wrong.

When teaching you can do both.
You can do both, but you are always leaning to one side of the spectrum. From what you said it sounds as though you prefer attitude and are correcting down the road for a sloppy movement? (in other words, you do not correct a sloppy movement while teaching the behavior, but while practicing it later)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
FYI, my scenario in a vacuum does not lend well to being directly compared to your real world scenario. Everyone is somewhere in between, and there are many more variables, but when defining methods and techniques it is worth while to concentrate only on the relevant parts of the method, for the purpose of understanding the method. However, just because a theoretical situation doesn't mirror a real one, does not mean useful things cannot be learned from the theory.
 

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The increase in drive or attitude is because you've now loaded the dog with "positive stress". This is a separate concept from what I'm talking about.
Why is it a separate concept?

I have a 10wk puppy. I'm imprinting a return to front. I guide him in with food and if he doesn't get close enough or if he puts his paws on me I give him an eh, eh and keep moving back. No loss in attitude.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Why is it a separate concept?

I have a 10wk puppy. I'm imprinting a return to front. I guide him in with food and if he doesn't get close enough or if he puts his paws on me I give him an eh, eh and keep moving back. No loss in attitude.
The separate concept is the increase in energy, attitude, etc was due to positive loading. You said the non-reward for not platzing increased his attitude and that means my statement was wrong. It doesn't have anything to do with my statement for several reasons: he didn't platz in the first place, even if he had and you didn't reward, the increase of attitude is due to positive loading, not your lack of treating him. He wants the treat. He didn't get it. That is adding positive stress. If you held an e-collar remote out (and he knew what that meant) and put your finger on the button, he is now negative loading. You get a change in attitude due to an increase in stress, be it positive or negative, in anticipation of a reward or correction.

You could at least agree that you can only observe, by definition, the results of the stimulus you provided? You cannot know the level of attitude of that dog, had you chosen to reward for getting "almost close enough", or if you had chosen to scream "fooey" at the top of your lungs and pop his collar (I know this is not appropriate). You may have not seen a loss of attitude over what he was before the exercise, but no one will ever know how his attitude compared to the attitude that would have resulted from rewarding "almost close enough" and fixing it later. I think we can reason that his attitude would have improved at the expense of his correctness... he wasn't close enough after all.

Demanding a perfect front from a 10wk puppy won't work, but commanding front and rewarding whatever happens won't either.. those are the absolute extremes of the spectrum. I'm just asking if you put a higher priority on attitude or on correctness

This is getting way way too complicated for such a simple question lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Absolutely not true. I just teach in a way that there is no loss in attitude and also complete correctness.
I'm sure you are a very good trainer, but you can't have both at the same time.

If I chose to learn a foreign language.. I can progress slowly with perfect pronunciation, or I can rapidly develop an ability to communicate, but have a thick accent to native speakers. I have to strike a balance somewhere. Loosely the same concept
 

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Both is my answer, and I don't think it sacrifices anything.

If I had to choose, I'd go with attitude in the early stages as I think the most important part of foundation training is to teach the young dog to love learning and love working. That attitude makes training so much more fun for both, so much easier for both, and when corrections are employed much later down the road they are taken in stride as just corrections without hurting the dog's attitude because that love of the work is so strongly instilled in the dog.

But I still don't think that requires sacrificing correctness. Even early on with puppies doing basic imprinting work, only correct responses are rewarded. Fast, straight, tuck sits. Fast, straight, fold back sphinx downs. Solid, evenly balanced stands with quick lock ups. Correct heel position with focus. Correct, straight, close fronts with focus. Correct, straight basics with focus. With good luring and marking techniques it doesn't take long for the dog to learn what is correct and brings reward and what isn't and doesn't bring reward, and therefore to consistently offer the behavior that is reinforced which translates to correctly performing the exercise with both enthusiasm and precision.

So no, I don't think correctness needs to be sacrificed for attitude or vice versa.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Another way to ask my question would be:

"do you think it is easier to fix attitude or correctness..."

maybe thats a little more palatable to everyone that is horrified by the idea of saying they would allow something less than perfect out of their dog lol
 

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Both are difficult to fix. If the fundamental attitude of the dog is one of dislike for the work, and he has much life experience disliking the work, it will be a long hard road to change his opinion. If he has habituated incorrect behavior, it will likewise be very difficult to fix that. Particularly as when under stress dogs will revert to their foundation learning. So while one could take a dog who had practiced a bad sit for a long while and fix it somewhat in training, when really paying attention and consistently rewarding the desired new behavior and correcting the undesireable old behavior, as soon as the handler isn't paying close attention or has his mind on other things, or the dog is placed in a stressful situation, the dog will likely revert to the previous undesireable behavior because it is well ingrained.

Which is why it's important to build both a positive attitude and correct behavior in the dog from the very start.

I'm sorry, it has nothing to do with being "more palatable". Just that some of us are of the opinion that your basic premis of one can have either attitude or correctness but not both at the same time, and cannot train both at the same time without sacrificing one, does not universally hold true. And while you may have some sort of training experience that leads you to your belief, others of us have training experiences that supports our very different opinions on that.
 

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Chris, I've had to fix things with Jax (and still fixing) and found using a new word to associate the behavior with seems to be the trick. The command becomes 'soured' if the dog develops a bad association with it. I've had to change Down to Platz, retraining in a positive way. 99.9% of the time she hits the ground smoothly. Down brings a resentful, slouch "I'll do it because I have too".
 

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Chris, I've had to fix things with Jax (and still fixing) and found using a new word to associate the behavior with seems to be the trick. The command becomes 'soured' if the dog develops a bad association with it. I've had to change Down to Platz, retraining in a positive way. 99.9% of the time she hits the ground smoothly. Down brings a resentful, slouch "I'll do it because I have too".
Absolutely! In cases like this is it much easier to teach a new word and associate it with the new behavior than it is to give new meaning to an old word that the dog associates with other things.
 
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