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DanRaff

Ndtf Vs Delta Dog Training Course?

106 posts in this topic

huski   

But surely it is more than "whatever gets results". I know someone who toilet trained their dog by smacking and yelling at them every time the pup made a mistake. It got results, so is it okay?

Ok, let me clarify. I thought it went without saying that people want the best results they can get, not just any result. I would assume that it goes without saying that it's not really the best result if there is a fall out between the dog and handler.

"Best for dog and handler" is a very slippery thing to hold up as the gold standard. How does one define "best"? I imagine there are at least dozens of ways. You and I have butted heads that many times purely over a disagreement on what we personally would consider "best", and to what end? I still did what I thought was best and you still did what you thought was best and I don't know how your dogs have been cruising lately but I'm pretty chuffed with mine. Dogs are kind of horrifically forgiving of handlers. You can make so many mistakes and most will absorb it and you'll get by anyway. Little wonder there is so much disagreement in how to train them. A lot of things work! So what do results tell you? Nothing except that the person has found one of the dozens of things that would have worked and managed to apply it not so terribly that the dog eventually figured out what to do. I'm sure what matters to many more than results is whether the dog and human are enjoying their life together.

How many people that come to you for training Corvus are happy for you to tell them that it doesn’t matter if the dog stops biting people, as long as the dog and owner are happy together?

I’m not trying to be argumentative, but people seek out the help of a professional trainers because they have a problem they need assistance with. They aren’t interested in going to a trainer who can’t tell them they can help fix the problem so as to give them a good result.

As I said above, I thought it went without saying that I’m talking about getting the best result possible, and I’d argue if you could call something a successful result if the ‘side effect’ is damage between the dog and owner’s relationship.

I talk to a lot of very desperate dog owners each day that will come for a consult as a last resort, if we can’t show them in that time frame (generally two hours) that results are achievable, and give them hope that their dog’s behaviour can change, their next stop is often having the dog PTS. Luke W talked above about “positive” training sometimes being harder or taking longer than using compulsion or aversives. If you train dogs professionally and see a lot clients taking time to show great results is not a luxury you are often afforded (regardless of what method you are talking about using).

I don’t care if you use positive or negative training methods or whatever, IMO training should be results driven. The method you decide to use for each dog or handler should be about getting the best result possible for them not about politics or being able to say x is better than y.

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Weasels   

Reading the article Luke W linked to (Thanks :)) reminded me how much I don't like the phrase "reward the good and ignore the bad", because it's just so unrealistic. I stumbled on this hierarchy of intrusiveness which I like a lot -

Freidman-Pyramid2.jpg

And an explanatory article: http://lifeasahuman.com/2012/pets/bad-dog-handling-problem-behaviours/

(possibly via Zayda-Asher :), sorry terrible memory!)

Edit - article by the original author (PDF) http://www.behaviorworks.org/files/articles/APDT%20What%27s%20Wrong%20with%20this%20Picture%20-%20Dogs.pdf

Edited by Weasels

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Kavik   

That is interesting Weasels, as the most controversial methods (eg ecollars, force retrieve) use negative reinforcement, not positive punishment, and I certainly feel more comfortable giving say a leash correction than using an ecollar or teaching a force retrieve (I have shaped my retrieve).

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huski   

I think the other thing to remember is that the dog decides what it finds aversive, not us.

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I think the other thing to remember is that the dog decides what it finds aversive, not us.

*nods*

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Weasels   

That is interesting Weasels, as the most controversial methods (eg ecollars, force retrieve) use negative reinforcement, not positive punishment, and I certainly feel more comfortable giving say a leash correction than using an ecollar or teaching a force retrieve (I have shaped my retrieve).

That's a good point - I think it might stem from their kinda fuzzy definition of 'intrusiveness' -

1) the level of social acceptability of an intervention, and 2) the degree to which the learner maintains control while the intervention is in effect.
But then there is a scale in all things of course, blocking dogs from working sheep with a rake until they widen their flank is a form of negative reinforcement which I think is milder than a leash correction :shrug:

I think the other thing to remember is that the dog decides what it finds aversive, not us.

Yes. Even with my little sample size of 2 - Chess thinks that excited attention is the most awesome thing ever and a great reward, but Weez finds it scary and almost certainly a bit aversive. So I have to watch out for poisoning my cues with it on Weez.

Edited by Weasels

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Kavik   

But then there is a scale in all things of course, blocking dogs from working sheep with a rake until they widen their flank is a form of negative reinforcement which I think is milder than a leash correction :shrug:

This would be negative punishment though, not negative reinforcement?

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Weasels   

This would be negative punishment though, not negative reinforcement?

It's probably a sequence, but to my thinking you are reinforcing the correct distance by stopping the pressure of pointing the rake at them

Edit - followed quickly by +R of being allowed to work the sheep again

Edit 2: But I do see what you're saying though. And my brain hurts.

Edited by Weasels

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Aidan3   

That is interesting Weasels, as the most controversial methods (eg ecollars, force retrieve) use negative reinforcement, not positive punishment, and I certainly feel more comfortable giving say a leash correction than using an ecollar or teaching a force retrieve (I have shaped my retrieve).

I suppose it really depends on how the dog is affected in the long term. Either -R or +P can elicit a long-term conditioned emotional response, and in some cases it can be quite non-discriminative (e.g punish dog for counter-surfing, dog gets anxious in kitchen if there isn't a clear contingency between counter-surfing and punishment). This is really the whole point of limiting the use of aversives, we limit the risks of fall-out.

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Luke W   

That is interesting Weasels, as the most controversial methods (eg ecollars, force retrieve) use negative reinforcement, not positive punishment, and I certainly feel more comfortable giving say a leash correction than using an ecollar or teaching a force retrieve (I have shaped my retrieve).

I suppose it really depends on how the dog is affected in the long term. Either -R or +P can elicit a long-term conditioned emotional response, and in some cases it can be quite non-discriminative (e.g punish dog for counter-surfing, dog gets anxious in kitchen if there isn't a clear contingency between counter-surfing and punishment). This is really the whole point of limiting the use of aversives, we limit the risks of fall-out.

Speaking of counter-surfing :o

I'm currently training Barkly to stay out of the kitchen. The new addition to my household isn't quite as used to him getting under her feet as I am, and he's not as adept at getting out of her way as he is mine (years of agility means he knows exactly where I'm about to move to). :)

I'm training it by 'teaching an incompatible behaviour'. The 'incompatible behaviour' is being in a down in the dining room whenever we're in the kitchen. It's a slow, but stress-free approach.

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huski   

I'm training it by 'teaching an incompatible behaviour'. The 'incompatible behaviour' is being in a down in the dining room whenever we're in the kitchen. It's a slow, but stress-free approach.

Not talking in regards to whether you are using rewards or aversives etc, but Luke W, how long would you persevere with a method without seeing a positive change or consistent (desired) results?

How long would anyone else persevere with something before deciding it wasn't working? The above just made me curious. I would question a training method that took a long time to start showing the desired outcome. Obviously the big picture things we train can take years to perfect, but we can see progress and know we are on the right track.

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Weasels   

How long would anyone else persevere with something before deciding it wasn't working? The above just made me curious. I would question a training method that took a long time to start showing the desired outcome. Obviously the big picture things we train can take years to perfect, but we can see progress and know we are on the right track.

Really not very long at all :o As in, if I don't see them getting it in the first session I try something else. Which is why I think I will always need to have working dogs :laugh:

Edited by Weasels

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Luke W   

I'm training it by 'teaching an incompatible behaviour'. The 'incompatible behaviour' is being in a down in the dining room whenever we're in the kitchen. It's a slow, but stress-free approach.

Not talking in regards to whether you are using rewards or aversives etc, but Luke W, how long would you persevere with a method without seeing a positive change or consistent (desired) results?

How long would anyone else persevere with something before deciding it wasn't working? The above just made me curious. I would question a training method that took a long time to start showing the desired outcome. Obviously the big picture things we train can take years to perfect, but we can see progress and know we are on the right track.

Interesting question.

In this particular case, ''slow" means weeks I guess. But that's more to do with my inconsistency :o At the moment, he knows the verbal cue "kitchen", coupled with a body cue. He does this pretty reliably for me (as long as the body cue is obvious enough) he'll remain there for minutes at a time. It's not an automatic behaviour when I walk into the kitchen yet though. I started seeing small changes in behaviour immediately. If I didn't, then I'd try something else immediately. Except of course for the things that are really hard and I have no idea how to train against. Some of those I persevere with no results for years :o and/or start to learn to live with. It depends on how important they are to me.

As an illustration, I'm ashamed to admit I've never been able to get him to walk on-lead with his shoulder level with my legs. He's always walked half his body length ahead. It sometimes drives me crazy and it's one of my biggest failings as a trainer. His formal heal position on the other hand is mostly spectacular - go figure.

In a general sense, I'd expect to see even the slightest change immediately and at least slow but steady process. I'm a patient man. In the meantime, I try to manage the behaviour. I'm not really willing to give big corrections or use physical punishment. I'm a softie and not very good at it.

I've never had to deal with a very aggressive dog or a behaviour that I truly couldn't accept (and that includes Barkly's resource guarding).

Edited by Luke W

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Aidan3   

I'm training it by 'teaching an incompatible behaviour'. The 'incompatible behaviour' is being in a down in the dining room whenever we're in the kitchen. It's a slow, but stress-free approach.

Not talking in regards to whether you are using rewards or aversives etc, but Luke W, how long would you persevere with a method without seeing a positive change or consistent (desired) results?

How long would anyone else persevere with something before deciding it wasn't working? The above just made me curious. I would question a training method that took a long time to start showing the desired outcome. Obviously the big picture things we train can take years to perfect, but we can see progress and know we are on the right track.

All hypotheticals aside, in this case you should really see significant change immediately. I mean all you have to do is teach the dog to go to a mat or station, then it's just a case of building up the duration. So the dog is out from under your feet within a couple of sessions.

But obviously there are more complex problems that will require a different solution. Bin raiding is one example. It's more complex, there is stuff in there (yummy stuff) and the dog may have unsupervised access to it. Although I have trained two of my own dogs to leave stuff alone unsupervised using a purely positive approach, I wouldn't necessarily expect a client to be able to do it. Then again, that sort of problem is easily managed by moving the bin or getting a more secure bin so it's probably a bad example.

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JulesP   

You are doing just fine with your little dog Luke. He is a pleasure to watch working.

Are you actually working as a trainer for K9Pro now Huski?

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Luke W   

All hypotheticals aside, in this case you should really see significant change immediately. I mean all you have to do is teach the dog to go to a mat or station, then it's just a case of building up the duration. So the dog is out from under your feet within a couple of sessions.

Yeah, the first bit was easy. Go to mat is a pretty solid behaviour.

These are the sort of things that are 'slow'

1. Building duration.

2. Proofing. Ie. When I spill gravy on the floor and have to turn my back to go to the sink to fetch a wash cloth.

added - and even these - I know if I put in more time and was more consistent and motivated - I could get these solidly proofed pretty quickly. You gets whats you put in.

Edited by Luke W

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Luke W   

You are doing just fine with your little dog Luke. He is a pleasure to watch working.

Thanks JulesP :) Your dogs stays are something I dream of :)

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jrm88   

Just wanted to add...Barkley is spectacular to watch! :) he is fantastic.

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huski   

As an illustration, I'm ashamed to admit I've never been able to get him to walk on-lead with his shoulder level with my legs. He's always walked half his body length ahead. It sometimes drives me crazy and it's one of my biggest failings as a trainer. His formal heal position on the other hand is mostly spectacular - go figure.

Do you mean getting him to walk on a loose leash? Or walk on a loose leash and maintain that position all the time? I don't think that sounds like something that would be a big failing as a handler, though I guess we all have different expectations and priorities. I personally don't care if my dogs walk in front of me, as long as they don't pull on the leash as I find walking dogs that pull on the leash really unpleasant.

All hypotheticals aside, in this case you should really see significant change immediately. I mean all you have to do is teach the dog to go to a mat or station, then it's just a case of building up the duration. So the dog is out from under your feet within a couple of sessions.

But obviously there are more complex problems that will require a different solution. Bin raiding is one example. It's more complex, there is stuff in there (yummy stuff) and the dog may have unsupervised access to it. Although I have trained two of my own dogs to leave stuff alone unsupervised using a purely positive approach, I wouldn't necessarily expect a client to be able to do it. Then again, that sort of problem is easily managed by moving the bin or getting a more secure bin so it's probably a bad example.

Yes, and I think it would also depend on how ingrained the behaviour is and how strong the reward history is when it comes to counter surfing.

Are you actually working as a trainer for K9Pro now Huski?

Hi Jules, Steve's been training me as a trainer for a little while now. :)

Yeah, the first bit was easy. Go to mat is a pretty solid behaviour.

These are the sort of things that are 'slow'

1. Building duration.

2. Proofing. Ie. When I spill gravy on the floor and have to turn my back to go to the sink to fetch a wash cloth.

Who could resist gravy?! Hehe :)

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Luke W   

As an illustration, I'm ashamed to admit I've never been able to get him to walk on-lead with his shoulder level with my legs. He's always walked half his body length ahead. It sometimes drives me crazy and it's one of my biggest failings as a trainer. His formal heal position on the other hand is mostly spectacular - go figure.

Do you mean getting him to walk on a loose leash? Or walk on a loose leash and maintain that position all the time? I don't think that sounds like something that would be a big failing as a handler, though I guess we all have different expectations and priorities. I personally don't care if my dogs walk in front of me, as long as they don't pull on the leash as I find walking dogs that pull on the leash really unpleasant.

Loose leash is no problem 99% of the time - unless there's something particular tasty just out of reach on the ground (discarded sandwiches for example) - he's not a puller. I'm incredibly fussy. I want him to walk shoulder to my leg, on lead 100% of the time (a 'loose heal position'). I don't like running into him when I turn, or having to use the lead to guide him or changing the length of the lead.....Hmmmm....my standards are a bit high aren't they :( I'm forever saying 'close' - it's his cue to slow down and drop back 6 inches. I don't walk him much on lead - off-lead parks abound in Melbourne.

Oh yes, and who could resist gravy indeed!!!

added again. Sorry for the thread hijack OP!

Edited by Luke W

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