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  #11  
Old 06-05-2010, 07:37 PM
Maura Maura is offline
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Maybe she needs to learn to accept him the way he is. It's quite possible he reacted to the vaccine, but it could be a combination of things, so she needs to take a step back and just enjoy him. Remind her that she has done very well with a very challenging situation, but accept certain limitations.
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  #12  
Old 06-05-2010, 08:03 PM
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lizzybeth727 lizzybeth727 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tazwell View Post
I don't mean to make it sound like she's only concerned about one little command... She is trying to figure out what motivates him. Through training of basic commands. She's trying to further his socialization, learning, and confidence through by bringing him to class. There are no problems with him, she's trying to help him along.
That's great, it's just that you mentioned that she has already used physical manipulation to teach a few behaviors, and you mentioned the possibility of using removing physical contact (negative reinforcement) as a motivator for teaching more behaviors. IMO both of these are bad ideas when you're trying to build motivation into the dog.

I heard a talk by Steve Martin (the famous bird trainer, not the famous comedian) on this subject. I think zoo trainers are much more careful about not using negative reinforcement or positive punishment when training their animals, because their animals are a little more sensitive than most pet dogs. Because dogs have evolved with humans, they tend to be more forgiving of us.... though we still have to be careful, too. And with a dog like this one, with much less people motivation than most dogs, the training should be more similar to what the zoo trainers are doing.

Here's an article by Steve that is sort of an abridged version of the talk I heard, but I think it has lots of important information for this particular dog. Of course it referrs to training birds, but I think it's pretty easy to adapt to this situation.
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  #13  
Old 06-06-2010, 02:33 PM
Maura Maura is offline
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That's a great article. Mr. Martin stressed, among other things, backing away from an animal when it shows signs of stress. I think people need to learn what these stress signals are, and to respect them. Clearly, having the animal comfortable is part of the recipe for success.
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  #14  
Old 06-07-2010, 10:09 AM
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Maybe she could try a few novel experiences? I'm thinking of a hike in the mountains or a walk on a beach, something in a heretofore unexperienced, but enticing, environment. Giving the dog something totally new to think about (sniff about?) might make him more open to other experiences.

Also, it would be fun!
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Old 06-07-2010, 02:20 PM
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Doberluv Doberluv is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MPP View Post
Maybe she could try a few novel experiences? I'm thinking of a hike in the mountains or a walk on a beach, something in a heretofore unexperienced, but enticing, environment. Giving the dog something totally new to think about (sniff about?) might make him more open to other experiences.

Also, it would be fun!

I think that's a stupendous idea! It might turn out to be a great jump start for who knows what. It is important that the dog isn't frightened or over-whelmed by new things though.
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