Using rewards to manipulate behavior

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As a follow-up to my last post here is a video showing how we use food to give dogs new skills and pattern new behaviors. Kelly was fearful of people and by using food to get him to move around he is building new patterns of behavior-those primarily being approaching a person without being afraid to do it. It can be a slow process, completely dependent on the skills and ability of the dog. But the changes we make are well established.


2 comments so far

  1. neighbornancy on

    This type of video is very helpful for me. I am about halfway through your book and recognize I need this sort of visual cue to implement properly. This was helpful in that I was at least doing some things well! Our Weimaraner is still terrified of the clicker, but after 2 months with us he was almost at this dog’s state. Love the video, and will go look for more now! Thanks!

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks for taking the time to remind me that I need to get more videos up!

      You don’t need to use a clicker if it scares the dog. A verbal ‘marker’ like a happy ‘yes!’ works too. I used the clicker specifically to demonstrate how one could use it.

      A part of ‘training’ does include mechanical skills like ‘treat delivery’ and timing. Like anything else, the more you practice the better you get at it. Depending on the situation I have to figure out where’s the best place for the rewards to be, how to hold them, how to deliver them, etc. Kelly was a good demo dog since he had some skills and I could do different things with him. I’d also already done a session with him and discovered I’d forgotten to turn the camera on! I think the little guy was stuffed to the gills when I filmed this.

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