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Steven_L
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PostSubject: Your training method   Wed Oct 07, 2009 7:09 pm

Everyone has a certain way that they teach their dog. What is yours? Are there certain things that just simply don't work? Are there any particular trainers whose techniques you follow, if so why?

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Tue Oct 20, 2009 4:40 pm

I really dont use one "type" of training ...

My "method" of training is to take time to evaluate the dog, find out it's likes and dislikes and then devise a plan based on the dog's personality and energy level. In devising the plan I use the things that the dog likes as a reward to encourage the dog to make the right choices. Then I praise the dog for making those correct choices.

EXAMPLE: With my last three, I spent the first two or three weeks JUST getting to know them. No training, just hanging out and taking notes!!! ONLY then did I begin to train. By finding out what they liked and what thier personalities were like, It was much easier to "connect" with them and it made the training easier.

Dogs are much like people, in that they want you to like them and they want to hang out with you if you are nice and fun to be around. For this reason, if you know what THEY like, you become more fun!!! If you know what they like, you can use those things to create a wonderful friendship and then a strong trusting bond.

With Patchs it is a treat or her Kong toy. When I trained her to come, I offered her a treat or the Kong. She would ALWAYS come to get it. If I didnt know that her "Highest Value Reward" was a treat or the Kong, and I tryed to use shoouting or phyical hitting, (her Lowest Value Reward) the training would have taken much longer or would have been much less effective.

With Neka it was a soft voice and tactile rewards. She just wants to be loved. If you offer her quiet praise she will do most anything for you. She likes treats almost as much!!!

The thing I feel is the most ineffective in dog training is strong-handed, physical, or Dominate training. Yes, a dog will respond, but only out of fear of being hit or abused. Sooner or later the dog's fear will take over and it will become aggressive. At this point the dog will turn on the trainer and it will NOT be good. When this happens, the owner or the public will label the dog Vissous and it will be destroyed. It wasnt the dog's fault, but the dog paid the price!!!
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Steven_L
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Wed Oct 21, 2009 2:17 am

You are absolutely right about aversive training being ineffective. Many times we have to put ourselves in our dogs position, if they arent listening to us is it possible that we arent making it clear what we want? Or maybe giving cues that tell the dog to do something else? But as you say too getting to know a dog as an individual and bond is key to training.

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Wed Oct 21, 2009 10:49 am

Steven_L wrote:
You are absolutely right about aversive training being ineffective. Many times we have to put ourselves in our dogs position, if they arent listening to us is it possible that we arent making it clear what we want? Or maybe giving cues that tell the dog to do something else? But as you say too getting to know a dog as an individual and bond is key to training.
Several weeks ago I had a neighbor ask me why his dog would not come when it was called. I went over to his house and OBSERVED him for about 5 minutes and I had it figured out. He was "stressed out" and you could hear it in is voice.

I had only met the dog 2 or 3 times for a minute or two before this ... I simply crouched down and in a calm, firm but friendly voice said, "Come Here" and she ran right up to me and sat down in front of me ... Shocked Needless to say the owner was in shock!!!

He said, "How the H$%@ di you do that?" so I spent the next hour explaining it ... Idea I also borrowed him my copy of "What Color is Your Dog" ... He brought it back over the weekend and said it was a great book and it was going to be very helpful. He now realizes that it's HIM not the dog!!! (as is almost always the case)
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Thu Oct 22, 2009 3:34 am

How right you are! Its almost always the owners fault, I havent read the book you mentioned, but McConnell`s The Other End of the Leash outlined how our primate tendencies clash with our companions canine tendencies.

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Thu Oct 22, 2009 11:04 am

Steven_L wrote:
How right you are! Its almost always the owners fault, I havent read the book you mentioned, but McConnell`s The Other End of the Leash outlined how our primate tendencies clash with our companions canine tendencies.
I haven't red "The Other End of the Leash" yet but I intend to do so in the near future.

"What Color is Your Dog" pretty much explains the foundation of my "Training Concept" ... In the late 80's Joel Silverman put out a VHS and cassette set called "The Hollywood Dog Trainer". I had it given to me as a Christmas Gift when I was starting to look for Chip. I followed it exactly and without question. IT WORKED, so I have stuck with it. Ive made a few minor adjustments to it to make it fit my personally, but i have not made any changes to the theory behind his "concept" ...

"What Color is Your Dog" is the printer version of that VHS and cassette set.

Note: His idea is that all dogs have different personalities and energy levels. And he breaks them down into color groups. Blue = Fearful .. Yellow in Calm / Confident .. Red = Very High Strung. It is obvous that you cant train a fearful or timid dog with the same methods you use on a high energy dog. The key to communication is to treat every dog as an individual and adjust your "method" to train each dog based on its personalities and energy level. The book goes into the meat and patatoes of this and shows you how he does it.
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Thu Oct 22, 2009 5:29 pm

Seems like a good read Grin I'll have to see if I can order it here from the library. Its an interesting concept to put groups like that, I mean, I guess its not all that simple but when it comes to educating others we don't want to confuse them either.lol.

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Thu Oct 22, 2009 5:54 pm

Steven_L wrote:
Seems like a good read Grin I'll have to see if I can order it here from the library. Its an interesting concept to put groups like that, I mean, I guess its not all that simple but when it comes to educating others we don't want to confuse them either.lol.
He has a website called "Companions For Life" that explains A LOT of his Concept. He also offers training DVD's and some of it is in video form that you can watch online.

The site is: http://www.companionsforlife.net

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Thu Oct 22, 2009 5:59 pm

betterdog4u wrote:
Steven_L wrote:
Seems like a good read Grin I'll have to see if I can order it here from the library. Its an interesting concept to put groups like that, I mean, I guess its not all that simple but when it comes to educating others we don't want to confuse them either.lol.
He has a website called "Companions For Life" that explains A LOT of his Concept. He also offers training DVD's and some of it is in video form that you can watch online.

The site is: http://www.companionsforlife.net

Hey thats a good site to add the K9Domain directory! Thanks for the link Wink

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Thu Oct 22, 2009 6:18 pm

Steven_L wrote:
betterdog4u wrote:
Steven_L wrote:
Seems like a good read Grin I'll have to see if I can order it here from the library. Its an interesting concept to put groups like that, I mean, I guess its not all that simple but when it comes to educating others we don't want to confuse them either.lol.
He has a website called "Companions For Life" that explains A LOT of his Concept. He also offers training DVD's and some of it is in video form that you can watch online.

The site is: http://www.companionsforlife.net

Hey thats a good site to add the K9Domain directory! Thanks for the link Wink
Your welcome, I added it to th links directory at abetterdog4u.com too!!!

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Wed Dec 16, 2009 7:14 am

I establish a strong bond with a dog first. From then on, it's almost a cakewalk.
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Wed Dec 16, 2009 10:38 am

Ann wrote:
I establish a strong bond with a dog first. From then on, it's almost a cakewalk.

I agree with you 100% Ann. Building the bond is THE most important thing an owner can do.

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Wed Dec 16, 2009 3:22 pm

Yup, I think we all agree that bond building is very important. It may be harder for those who have dogs that are fearful of people but as you say Ann, after breaking the ice it should be easier. Razz

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Sun Jan 24, 2010 8:55 pm

I like the nothing is for free concept....good, appropriate actions are rewarded. inappropriate actions are either ignored or the dog is distracted into performing a good action. it works for me and lucy....she is maturing nicely now.
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:47 pm

lucysnewmum wrote:
I like the nothing is for free concept....good, appropriate actions are rewarded. inappropriate actions are either ignored or the dog is distracted into performing a good action. it works for me and lucy....she is maturing nicely now.

I agree, the NILIF training program is definitely good way to establish a healthy relationship with your dog, I mean who needs all tht "flip your dog on it's back" mumbo jumbo, if we set clear guidelines and demonstrate that we are capable of being...well in a sense, 'parents' there should be little to no problems in a dog owning household.

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Sun May 23, 2010 3:06 am

I personally like the positive approach. Reward good behavior and try to ignore the bad.
Clicker training is great, I have had success with both dogs and cats.
But there are times when I feel that you have to correct as well. I think you have to have a balance .My dog needs only a sharp tone to know when he has done something that I do not like. I do not have a problem making a verbal correction to my dog. Especially when he is being lazy.
A slouch is not a down.
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Mon May 24, 2010 3:39 pm

ozzy29 wrote:
I personally like the positive approach. Reward good behavior and try to ignore the bad.
Clicker training is great, I have had success with both dogs and cats.
But there are times when I feel that you have to correct as well. I think you have to have a balance .My dog needs only a sharp tone to know when he has done something that I do not like. I do not have a problem making a verbal correction to my dog. Especially when he is being lazy.
A slouch is not a down.

Glad to hear that you are for dog-friendly methods, and have some experience with clicker training! I definitely think that the latter is the way to go Wink

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Tue May 25, 2010 3:18 pm

Clickers are great. My cats are even clicker trained! People are surprised but my cats will come and do tricks when I use the clicker!
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Tue May 25, 2010 5:47 pm

ozzy29 wrote:
Clickers are great. My cats are even clicker trained! People are surprised but my cats will come and do tricks when I use the clicker!

Its definitely surprising what you can do with a clicker! In on of Patricia McConnell's books, she tells the readers how she clicker trained fish and hermit crabs! Nothing fancy, but pretty amazing nonetheless!

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Wed May 26, 2010 1:27 am

Wow..
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Mon Dec 13, 2010 9:17 pm

What a great topic!

As long as we are throwing out good books I'll mention Temple Grandin's Animals In Translation. She talks about fear being worse than pain which is an amazing concept. It seems like when it counts pain doesn't get dog's attention anyway (imagine a dog lunging on the end of a leash to get a squirrel that can hardly breath).

I love clickers and positive reinforcement for making decisions. Since I have a border collie I love learning to read body language and using mine to help her understand what I want.

But I think the biggest problems dog owners have with training is getting their dog's exercise in safely (no arms being pulled out of their sockets or dogs on the road). Dog parks are popular because they are an easy way for some dogs to get their exercise but I think there have to be some really good games people can play in their own houses with out the problems dog parks have.

I have found that when my dog doesn't get her exercise she puts her need for exercise (in whatever form that takes: ranging, chasing things...) above me. All of us want our dogs to be our best friends but how do we motivate them? Fading out a lure takes more time that it does to train the behavior. If you want a reliable response it has to be practiced with every distraction imaginable before the dog can be trusted in a new environment. We have found a million ways to reward our dogs (treats/toys/life rewards/play...) but what happened to the idea of our dogs doing what we ask for the joy of doing it? How do we transfer the reward to the action in and of itself? Whatever we do we have to be rewarding them somehow...

We all remember the dog of our childhood that seemed to do things without the need for a reward every single time he did what we wanted (or every other time or every third time). Kids play more with dogs but I doubt they are rewarding dogs on a schedule. What are they doing that we aren't? I know there is a lot more to this!

We all want our dogs to love us but high rewards, if I'm honest with myself, seems too hard to use without them turning into bribes. Time together with massage and walks build mutual respect but what about those people that can't walk their dog without having to wear gloves to avoid leash burns? What else do you do to gain your dog's trust that doesn't just dissipate when they see a moving tennis ball?

Questions help me think and I'm not expecting answers to everything but I would love to hear what you think and how you motivate/build trust. Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Tue Dec 14, 2010 2:00 pm

http://silvia.trkman.net/
Here is Silvia Trkman's training method which I love. I also checked out the games you have on the K9 Domain and they are great; easy to follow and I love the little meters.
Siliva uses a lot of exercise and tricks to build the bond. What do you do?
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Thu Dec 16, 2010 4:12 pm

What a great post Deve! And I agree with a lot of it! Haven't read Animals in Translation, but I did see it once at my library and have had it on my "To Read" list for a while Wink

Glad you found the dog games article interesting! I think games are an excellent way to build a bond with a dog. In my case I think walks is the best way to bond with my dog, for the sole reason that he loves them so much. Also for timid dogs, I've heard that hand feeding also is a great starting way to build a bond with that dog.

Never heard of Silvia Trkman but I'll definitely have to check up on her training methods! Thanks for the link!

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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Tue Sep 13, 2011 1:58 pm

Hi everyone,

I am new to this forum and already I really do feel that I belong! I didn't know you could clicker-train a cat! I absolutely LOVE the discussion everyone is having around positive training and teaching methods, and especially how you are emphasizing the importance of developing a bond with your dog. I have two maltese poodles, Tango & Sparky, and I couldn't love them more. My passion is in designing simple, fun games & challenges you can do with your dog in the comfort of your own home when you can't get outside for walks. Love it - it not only strengthens our bond but they learn a lot & develop confidence as well....
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PostSubject: Re: Your training method   Tue Sep 13, 2011 3:02 pm

Lori F wrote:
Hi everyone,

I am new to this forum and already I really do feel that I belong! I didn't know you could clicker-train a cat! I absolutely LOVE the discussion everyone is having around positive training and teaching methods, and especially how you are emphasizing the importance of developing a bond with your dog. I have two maltese poodles, Tango & Sparky, and I couldn't love them more. My passion is in designing simple, fun games & challenges you can do with your dog in the comfort of your own home when you can't get outside for walks. Love it - it not only strengthens our bond but they learn a lot & develop confidence as well....
First let me say welcome. Im very big on "the bond" between dog and human and feel that it is the single most important thing needed in order to communicate with our dogs.

I am very interested in hearing more about the games you are working on. Ive been interested in this myself. We have very long and cold winters here and Im always looking for ways to keep Patchs busy and stimulated when its below zero outside.

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