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The Art of Dog Training

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The Art of Dog Training

By: Sandi Munson

Aboutme.doc


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Objective

  • I want to give you an overall insight to the world of training. I will be touching on some of the history, techniques, and some of the controversy in the industry. I want to leave you with an idea of what to do when you or someone you know gets a puppy.


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What we will cover:

  • The importance of dog training

  • History of training

  • Methods

  • Training Tools

  • Major controversies


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Why train your dog?

  • Enhances the human-animal bond

  • It makes living together easier

  • It is necessary i.e.: cattle or sheep herding

  • It is fun!!


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How do dogs learn?

  • Classical Conditioning

    • Pavlov’s dogs

  • OperantConditioning

    • Positive/Negative Reinforcement

    • Positive/Negative Punishment


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Classical Conditioning

  • Ivan Pavlov:

    • Was a Russian physiologist who was conducting a digestion study and noticed that the dogs began to salivate at the sound of a tone.

    • Was credited with the discovery of classical conditioning


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Classical Conditioning

How it happened:

1.) Researchers fed meat after a tone sounded

2.) Researchers noticed the dogs began salivating at the sound of the tone before food was present.

3.) This led to more studies in behavior


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Classical Conditioning

Definition of Classical Conditioning:

A type of stimulus acquires a capacity to evoke a response that was originally evoked by another stimulus. (Weiten/Craig)


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Operant Conditioning

  • This is controlling volunteered behavior.

  • Defined as:

    • It is a form of learning in which responses can be controlled by their consequences. (Weiten/Craig)


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Reinforcement

  • Clicker training developed from here

  • Positive Reinforcement:

    • basis for most of the popular forms of training.

    • Adding something the animal likes to increase the behavior occurring.

  • Negative Reinforcement:

    • Removing something that promotes the behavior

      • For Example: Walking away from jumping dog, promotes the behavior of sitting for greeting people. Removing person increases the desired behavior, the sit.


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Punishment

  • Positive Punishment:

    • adding something the animal dislikes to decrease a behavior.

  • Negative Punishment:

    • removing something for the behavior to stop

  • Most common mistakes:

    • Negative reinforcement and Positive Punishment aren’t the same thing.

    • This link takes you to AVSAB’s definitions and examples and position on punishment.

    • Explaination of Punishment


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Positive Reinforcement Training

  • Basics: dog performs behavior, get a reward!

  • Types of reward:

    • Treats (most common)

    • Toys

    • Praise

  • Luring and Clicker training

    • Main forms of training today


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Luring

  • Easy to do

  • Ask the dog to do something that comes natural and reward when desired behavior happens

  • This clip was found on youtube and is a very common way to train sit

  • Common demonstration of luring: the Sit


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Clicker Training History

  • Invented and developed 30 years ago by Keller Berland, Marian Bereland Bailey, and Bob Bailey.

  • First used and developed in marine animals

    • They commonly used the whistle

  • In 1992, Karen Pryor along with Gary Wilkes, Gary Priest, and Ingrid Kang Shallenberer put together the first clicker training seminar. (Clickertraining.com)


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Clicker Training

  • Why use clicker? This link will take you to Karen Pryor’s website discussing why clickers are more effective than your voice

  • Why you can't just use your voice

  • The ‘click’ signals animal of good behavior

  • Tells the dog that a treat is coming

  • Allows the trainer to bridge the gap from when the behavior occurred to when the reinforcement comes

  • Follow this link for a demonstration of clicker training!

    • Clicker Training Video


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Training Tools

  • Halters and Easy-Walkers

  • Gentle Leaders

  • Pinch/Prong Collars

  • Choke Chains


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Which is the tool for you?

Almost all dogs can be taught not to pull on a normal flat collar. But it takes time, if you want help, you can use a training aid.


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Gentle Leaders:

  • ARE NOT MUZZLES!!!

  • They are a training tool that allows the handler complete control over the dog’s head.

  • Works a lot like a halter on a horse

  • Follow link to premier's instructions on fitting and desensitizing.

  • Gentle Leader fitting instructions


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Halters

  • Come in a wide variety of styles

  • The front clasp halters (bottom picture) are showing to be more effective in controlling pulling.

  • Click to learn more about Easy Walkers


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Pinch Collars and Choke Chains

  • Get desired results by a jerk of the leash

  • Follow link to choke chain hand out from the APDT

  • Choke Chain Leaflet


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Controversy in the industry:

  • The trainers face off

  • Cesar Millan vs.. Ian Dunbar

  • Why the controversy?

    • Most trainers are either highly credentialed or

    • Just doing things that work


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Cesar Millan

  • Grew up with a natural talent for working with dogs.

  • Read several psychology books.

  • Major method: “Leader of the Pack”

  • Methods are very dangerous, the show constantly flashes “Do not attempt at home” on bottom of the screen.

  • 2004 National Geographic Channel aired his first series The Dog Whisperer


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Ian Dunbar

  • DVM

  • PhD in animal behavior

  • Special Honors in physiology and biochemistry

  • In 1981 began the idea that dogs can learn at a very young age. Before it was thought that dogs shouldn’t be trained until 6 months of age.

  • Started the industry doing puppy classes at 8 weeks while the window of opportunity for socialization is still there.


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Why the controversy?

  • While Cesar is charming and his face is out there promoting ‘leader of the pack’ and not working on sit, stay; he says he is “working for a balanced dog” and says he is rehabilitating dogs. He has almost no credentials and almost no training. He does what comes naturally, but can cause major behavioral problems.

  • Ian Dunbar advocates for positive reinforcement and it is training you could let a supervised 4 year old to do. Highly educated and has studied behavior for years.


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What to look for in trainers or behaviorists:

  • Backed by major dog associations: AKC, APDT, AVSAB

  • Has schooling such as:

    • Bachelors, Masters, or PhD related to behavior.

    • Click here for APDT's tips for what to look for in a good trainer.


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American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior

  • Are a group of professionals, DVM and research professionals who are dedicated to animal welfare.

  • Reviews papers and trainers

  • Helps support the first masters program at University of Illinois in Applied Animal Behavior


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Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT)

  • Association of professional trainers that promote education makes good trainers.

  • Founded by Ian Dunbar in 1993

  • Not all trainers are behaviorists

  • A trainer has to sit an exam that test over a wide range of topics to become a certified pet dog trainer (CPDT).


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Positive vs. Negative Reinforcement Study

Training methods of military dog handlers and their effects on the team’s performances.

  • The basics of this study was to see how the team’s (dog and handler) performance was influenced by rewards and punishments.

  • Main Results:

    • Found that the traditional teams are not efficient (mainly aversive stimuli)

    • That dog’s behavior is closely linked to the handler’s.

  • A couple of graphs


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So you got a new puppy, now what?

  • You just brought home a new puppy, and 6 months seems a very long time to wait to be able to get them trained.

  • AVSAB's handout on puppy socialization

  • Early classes and training will get you going in the right direction and keep your puppy socialized and happy!


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Dogs at play

  • Be very skeptical of who you let your dogs socialize with in the beginning:

    • Big dogs: They will let puppies hang off their necks and ears, not all dogs will enjoy that.

    • Rough players: puppies will learn to play rough from them.

    • Socially awkward dogs: will teach your puppies bad habits and show mixed signals.

    • Follow this link for a video of good examples and explanations of play

  • Click here to watch a video with explanation of dogs at pay.


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Summary

  • You now have all the tools to make informed decisions when it comes to dogs and dog training.

  • You can find classes in your area through APDT for a trainer, or ask your local veterinarian.

  • For more information follow this link to the Bibliography I pulled almost all the information in this presentation and some other interesting papers realted to training.


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