Targeting is a great way to teach a horse or a dog (or a goldfish!) new skills or tricks. The animal learns to follow a hand, a stick, or any other sort of object where ever the object might lead. (For the horses, I usually use an empty plastic water bottle duct taped on the […]
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Dogs, dogs, dogs! In this section, you’ll find lots of great dog training stories and tips from my adventures training my own dogs, my foster dogs, and the dogs of my clients.
We’ve been talk about shaping in class, which is one of the neatest things about clicker training. (Actually, there are a lot of neat things about clicker training!) Shaping is teaching a new behavior through successive approximations. Basically, you start with a very low criteria and gradually increase your criteria until you reach your target […]
How do we train our dogs? Do we need to be the alpha dog, the most dominant member of the pack, and insist that our dogs obey us, even if we must use force or punishment? This is the view still advocated by many trainers, but is it a scientifically sound way to train our […]
Here’s a video of Ginger and I playing from about a week ago. It shows a handful of the things we’ve been working on recently. We’ve been working quite a bit on targeting type behaviors, including touching my palm and touching the end of a targeting stick. (More information about target training.) She really understand […]
Here’s how I’m putting theory from the classroom into my training sessions! Several weeks ago in my intro behavior analysis class we talked about good reinforcers using an acronym called DISC. This is what DISC stands for: D–deprivation I–immediacy S–size C–contengency The best reinforcers are something the animal hasn’t had in awhile (principle of deprivation), […]
I really like Jerry Coyne’s blog. (Coyne’s a University of Chicago professor, who I actually had for a bio class. He’s recently started a blog to promote his new book Why Evolution Is True.). Over the past few days, he’s posted some links of some really awesome animals, you should check them out. Sheepdogs and […]