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  #11  
Old 10-09-2011, 04:54 PM
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I use time out/ending a game coupled with a NRM to mark the behaviour that led to the game finishing and my dog being put away.

I find it works so well - nothing more devastating to my dog than losing the chance to get the reward.
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  #12  
Old 10-09-2011, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danefied View Post
When I teach Bates heel by essentially saying "in this position and you will be rewarded" it creates a much different behavior than telling him "outside of this position you will be corrected" It seems like you're telling the dog the dog the same thing, but the behavior is much more reliable when paired with a properly timed reward.
For me it's not just about the reliability but the attitude in the dog. A dog that is corrected heavily in heelwork will never work with the same 'spark' that a dog trained in drive or other reward based methods works like. They may do the exercise, but where is the joy?
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  #13  
Old 10-10-2011, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by smeagle View Post
For me it's not just about the reliability but the attitude in the dog. A dog that is corrected heavily in heelwork will never work with the same 'spark' that a dog trained in drive or other reward based methods works like. They may do the exercise, but where is the joy?
Actually, some breeds, and some lines within the breed have been selectively bred for tremendous resilience to corrections. This was done on purpose so you could not only get a great protection trained dog who would push forward despite the decoy's "corrections". This also creates a dog who is particularly resilient with escape/avoidance training methods.

Doesn't mean you HAVE to train them with escape/avoidance methods though

And you can't escape the fact that a correction, no matter how mild, and no matter how "appropriate", will still "poison" the cue:
Quote:
As soon as the animal understand s what a given cue means, the cue, or positive discriminative stimulus, becomes in itself a conditioned positive reinforcer, like the click. Thus a cue can be used as a reinforcer for behavior that occurs as the cue is being given. One may for example use the well-established positive cue for one behavior to shape another behavior, or to reinforce previous behavior in a chain. The cue can be used also as marker signal, just as if it were a click, to pinpoint especially good aspects of another behavior. It seems likely, too, that the desirable emotional response that we know to be associated with the click also accompanies the presentation of these positively conditioned stimuli.

Behavior that has been trained by correction may also have associated discriminative stimuli, which indicate when the specific behavior is to occur. However, these discriminators, or commands, may or may not lead to positive reinforcement. If the animal fails to perform the behavior, or performs it incorrectly, the stimulus may lead to punishment (usually called 'correction'. The negative discriminative stimulus, usually called a command, is now a conditioned negative reinforcer, signaling the opportunity for avoiding punishment.

Even if the behavior was trained entirely with positive reinforcement, if one now clicks for correct behavior following a discriminator ( a cue, command, or signal) but also gives aversive correction (leash pop, verbal reprimand, etc.) for incorrect behavior following that same stimulus, the stimulus immediately loses its value as a positive reinforcer. It is, at best, ambiguous in terms of reinforcement. It is not a click. It no longer automatically triggers the positive emotions associated with conditioned positive reinforcers. It can no longer be predictably used inside a chain to reinforce previous behavior.
from
The Poisoned Cue: Positive and Negative Discriminative Stimuli | Karen Pryor Clickertraining
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  #14  
Old 10-10-2011, 04:35 PM
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LOL. Sure, some dogs are bred to have exceptionally solid nerve but I still am yet to see a dog who has been taught heelwork with heavy correction based methods who work with as good an attitude as dogs who have been taught heelwork with reward based methods. Just because the dog can still do it after heavy corrections does not mean it will still maintain a great attitude. And besides which - those dogs would be the minority compared to the number of dogs in general obedience that I see who work without any real joy because they've been trained with old fashioned methods. It's sad.

I disagree with the idea that incorporating any kind of aversive "poisons" a cue or command. One of the most aversive things I could do to my dog is end a game/remove reward and I do this following a NRM marker in training all the time. Yet it makes her work harder and improves her reliability and response to commands.
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Old 10-10-2011, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by smeagle View Post
I disagree with the idea that incorporating any kind of aversive "poisons" a cue or command. One of the most aversive things I could do to my dog is end a game/remove reward and I do this following a NRM marker in training all the time. Yet it makes her work harder and improves her reliability and response to commands.
I felt the same way for the longest time too.
But a NRM or removing a reward is not the same thing as applying a punishment or an aversive.

With every command we teach, we also create an emotional association. In the same way Pavlov got dogs to salivate at the sound of a bell, you can get a dog to feel good (or feel apprehensive) at the sound of a certain command. If you create a positive enough association with the command, eventually the command itself becomes a reward for the dog.
BUT, say you have a dog who is conditioned that "no" is a predictor as something unpleasant (as most dogs are). Now ask for a down, and the dog sits instead, and you say "no" DOWN, (instead of NRM). Rinse and repeat enough times and You create a negative association with the cue - both the sit cue (because there will be a time when "sit" is the right answer, but you just corrected it), and with the down cue because if the dog is "wrong" he gets a reprimand. This creates the hesitation of the dog not wanting to guess wrong.

NRM are not predictors of anything other than no reward. Unless you're like me and you suck at keeping frustration and/or disappointment out of the NRM, then it *can* become a predictor of frustrated mom. If your dog is sensitive enough it becomes the same thing as a "no". Which is why if the dog misses a cue I just mulligan.
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  #16  
Old 10-10-2011, 05:48 PM
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Hmmm, I think we will have to agree to disagree. In some instances in training I want to create some frustration, I don't actually see it as a bad thing as it increases my dogs desire for the reward and makes her work harder especially when she knows I will relieve that frustration.

Another example I can think of is (probably controversial but oh well) the way we use low stim e-collar training to train something like a recall. The stim on the lowest perceivable level becomes a cue and can increase the dogs confidence when they know they have the power to turn it off, I've only ever seen the end result be a dog with a confident and super fast recall. Its not something I would call highly aversive - that level of stim is probably one of if not the least aversive sensation you could use - but I doubt anyone could tell when looking at the end result that the dog was trained with an e-collar. The response to the command is solid, reliable and the dog maintains a good attitude. I am sure that aversives applied incorrectly have a negative effect (see my earlier posts about hard corrections in heel work) but I don't agree that's always the case.
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  #17  
Old 10-10-2011, 05:52 PM
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Well, the whole point of an aversive is to stop a behavior. It has to be aversive enough for the dog to WANT it to stop. So, yeah, while low level aversives may not cause issues in many dogs, that is still how they work
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  #18  
Old 10-10-2011, 06:00 PM
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Sure but then the argument becomes whether you think aversives of any kind should be used in training and that would have to include things dogs find aversive like reward removal. With the e-collar example, working on the lowest perceivable level only works if you put the ground work in to conditioning a stim that low as a cue. It's so low that dogs will ignore it around even mild distractions Unless it's been proofed otherwise

IMO - results are the most important thing for me. If something works well and produces good results I can't really argue with it.
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  #19  
Old 10-10-2011, 06:01 PM
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Yeah, we differ there. To me its about why and how something works, not the results.
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  #20  
Old 10-10-2011, 06:06 PM
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How are the results not the most important part of training?

If Im using a method that isnt working why continue with it? Why use a method you aren't getting GOOD results with?

This attitude really baffles me. When I look for a reputable trainer the thing I'm most interested in is how good their results are with the dogs they work with. If their methods are ineffective or don't produce good results I'm not interested.
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