All Positive Dog Training, Is It Really Enough?

Posted: August 6, 2014 in Dog Behavior, Dog Training Methods and Ideas, My Phiosophy On Dog Training, Puppy Training
Tags: , , , , , ,

positive reinforce

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am not one to be controversial, or stir up sh*t, and I might take
some criticism for today’s post but hey, I promised to always speak
my mind and tell you the truth as I see it, thus today’s post is
about all positive dog training…is it really enough?

Nope, I don’t believe it is.

It’s good in theory.

But has a couple of fatal flaws.

Now don’t get me wrong, for some dogs all positive training does
work, but for the vast majority of dogs that I have worked with,
all positive training does not go far enough.

I think having a positive approach to dealing with your puppy or
dog is very important, and the use of treats comes in very handy
when teaching your dog to come, sit, down, stay..however that being
said I believe that sometimes you have to control your dogs
behavior and in some instances that means using a negative
consequence to modify emotional state and behavior.

This doesn’t mean you have to hurt you dog, but I think using a
tool like the time out works wonders for a dog who is a little bit
out of control.

It effectively modifies the behavior and changes the emotional
state of the puppy or dog.

For example if I am working a dog on a long line and suddenly he
gets too excited and begins to bully a dog he is playing with..I
will first step on the long line and then pick it up and give a
little tug..just enough to get his attention..the tug is his
warning..settle down now or I will reel you in and you will have to
sit by me for 5 minutes and watch the other doggies at play, in
other words I will take away your freedom.

This is very powerful and the dog is much better behaved when I
release him again to play.

Or, perhaps your 4 month old puppy is biting a little to hard and
you know that he knows better because you have taught him to use a
gentle mouth..then taking him by the collar and giving him a 3
minute time out is very powerful in sending the message that biting
people is not acceptable, and if he does it he will get a negative
consequence for his actions.

I have learned a lot about being a parent from dog training. The
German Shepherds I have raised are very intelligent and have the
learning capabilities of a 3-year-old child.

Most times my children were well-behaved but there were times when
things got a little to out of control and I or my wife had to step
in and put an end to it.

It wouldn’t make any sense for me to say to my children, “If you
stop pulling hair and slapping one another I will give you a
popsicle..my god they would be slapping and pulling hair 24/7.

Instead I always give them a warning by going in the room and in a
stern voice I would say, “Now if you don’t settle down and quit
hurting one another I am going to sit you in a hardwood chair in the
middle of the floor and you won’t be able to play with anyone or
anything for 10 minutes.”

This is very powerful..no child wants to sit and watch other kids
playing and having fun while they sit on a chair watching..so the
likelyhood of that child slapping or pulling hair is less apt to
happen again.

I did not hurt my child with the negative consequence, but their
behavior was modified and the emotional state was changed.

The other flaw that I have observed, and I have tried many of these
positive reinforced methods of training..classical conditioning,
threshold training, counter conditioning, ect.

While I have no doubt that they work in most instances..the problem
lies in the amount of time it takes to get results..

The average dog owner does not want to spend a lot of time training
their dogs, they want it to be quick and they want it to work.

If the training takes up to much of their already stretched thin time..they will not be consistent enough and many will simply give up.

That’s why I believe that my method of training works the best..I can accomplish in days what positive reinforced training takes weeks if not months to accomplish, and once I have shown people the steps they need to take to put the laws of nature that govern all dogs in place, they too see positive results in a very short order.

That’s all for today, if you liked this post let me know by liking my Face Book Page River Valley Dog Training.

And if you have any questions or comments, put them in the spot below.

All the best,

Harley

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Comments
  1. catherine Teegarden says:

    Harley, I wish you lived in Berkeley, CA where I am, and I would hire you right away. Do you have a twin nearby? Really, do you have any associates in my area?
    Catherine Teegarden

    Like

    • Hi Catherine, thank you for your support. Unfortunately I work alone..and sadly not to many people are providing the kind of training that I offer..if I can ever be of help, even from my home in Canada I would be happy to help you anytime..take care and all the best, Harley

      Like

  2. Judy Fitzgerald says:

    Hi Harley, My GS Jackson, mouths all dogs he plays with including me and mt boyfriend and NO and leave it does not seem to work. He is a very alpha male,which I do try to curb. of course isn’t working.

    Like

    • Hi Judy, thanks for visiting my website, Here is a video I made to teach my 12 week old GS not to bite to hard, try this and let me know what you think..http://wp.me/p4xcNT-2T, and if he already knows better then I suggest the next time he does it don’t say a word just take him by the collar and put him in his crate or in the bathroom for a 3 minute timeout..this is very powerful..

      Like

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