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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I wonder what are the appropriate ways to let your dog know that he has done an undesirable behavior? I'm a supporter of positive reinforcement of course and intend on clicker training. A lot of methods I've been studying help prevent unwanted behavior, but I'm still a little unsure on how to stop already bad existing behavior or what to do when they occur. I love Ian Dunbar and his tactics. Currently I'm reading his " Before and After Getting Your Puppy" and watching his videos. However I do admit this one clip did confused me a little.

Aggression 3 Sit Stay - Training Dogs with Dunbar - YouTube

Was the leash jerks ok? I've been so used to being told that leash jerking was discouraged, but in this scenario, it's appropriate because of the timing and praise given for the sit and stay right?

In general, what do you guys do when you correct aggressive or bad behavior? I just want to make sure my common sense and observations are in the right place.
P.S - Who else likes hearing Ian talk? lol his voice is very amusing :)
 

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I generally make a No, Eh, grunt type sound. Sometimes I bang a wall. (with my head lol)

I can't see the vid here-blocked. But I have used a leash 'attention getter' so to speak. I have had a dog bolt to the end of the leash and get jerked becuase I was unable to move or verbably stop the dog. (dang squirrls) I have corrected that (my last dog) with the wait command and the easy command. (easy was a stalking mode)
 

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i get critisized alot for useing leash jerks most posative only trainers will say its a big NO NO but i think if done correctly and consitatnly they work great. most people will say it destroys your relationship with your dog or your dog will fear you forever but i dont belive that if done correctly that will happen. obviously NOT done right or bad timeing can cause a fearful response or some people who watch Cesar millan over kill the jerking.

i did not watch that video with the suond but IMO they were NOT doing those leadj erk correctly AT ALL.
that black lab became fearful becuase of the intensity used to jerk and the dog obviously had no prior experience being taught what corrections mean.
you should NEVER wait untill your dog is in a bad situation like that to use corrections for the first time you should start useing them for small things useing light and quick jerks to get your dogs attention then praise so its a mild correction and he gets the point.

that lab has either
A. never had corrections used onh im previous to this
or
B. the intensity was too much
or C. all of the above your goal in useing lead jerks is NOT to pulll your dog around so hard that he/she is overwelmed by your strength becuase your teaching your dog to ignore intensity you want to be able to use the mildest corrections possable.

people dont realize corrections of any kind are training in inself before they should be used.
example if your dog is trash picking you should attatch a lead and use a mild correction the dog looks at you you praise goes back to the trash mild correction i like to use a verbal comand with that like i use AHAH so then the dog associates AHAH with correction so later all you need to use is AHAH.

its cruel to put a dog into that situation and use a harsh correction for the first time they dont know what it means which is why that blck lab was so fearful you teach your dog to become fearful of the situation if they keep that intesity level up everytime another dog walks past that lab awfully soon he is going to freak out at every dog walking by.

first step for me and Cesar was when i brought him home put the lead on him he would try litter munching i would use mild lead corrections every time he would do it with AHAH and be persistant but the jerks were so mild in a normal collar (not a choke chain) that he would turn his head and wag his tail at me untill he got sick and tierd of it and stop going near the litter boxes. same for the vaccum everytime the vaccum was turned on he would try attacking it put the lead on give a jerk to get his attention and say AHAH sternly now once the vaccum comes on he doesnt bat an eye.

now days i dont need to use lead jerks as corrections AHAH is enough for him.

if you want to use corrections correctly start off small useing the lightest amount of pressure possable to get your dogs attention increaseing as needed but again your dog really needs to learn what corrections are all about first.
 

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I'm not a fan of leash jerks, mostly because they tend to be over-used, timed incorrectly, and used when the dog doesn't understand why its being jerked around. I haven't watched the video.

My way of dealing with bad behaviour is to allow it to extinguish itself or replacing it with an alternative appropriate behaviour. The key to this is not setting the dog up to fail. Keep in mind that my dog came to me extremely fearful and correcting him wasn't even an option because it caused him to completely shut-down. So I had to do some research and find alternative ways of dealing with behaviours I don't like.

So for example, my dog was/is leash reactive. I worked (with people and dogs I knew) to reward positive behaviour around other dogs. "Bad" behaviour (i.e. barking, screaming, lunging etc.) was ignored totally. The key to this is to set this training up so that he's kept under threshold so that "bad" behaviours aren't even being practiced, unless I screw up and move to fast. Moving slowly and decreasing the distance that he could handle between himself and another dog without reacting has gotten him to the point where he can walk past a strange dog on a sidewalk and just look to me for food. Now, he is still rewarded for calmly walking by strange dogs but he doesn't really react because a negative reaction doesn't "pay" as well as looking at me. He wasn't able to practice the behaviour so it extinguished.

If he's involved in a behaviour that is self-reinforcing (like ripping apart something (which is fun!)). I redirect him. So instead of telling him what not to do, I tell him what I want him to do. I do use an "ah ah" to interrupt him but immediately follow that with an alternative behaviour. When he first came home, there was a lot of blocking his access to stuff and redirecting to appropriate chews. Now he knows what he's allowed and what isn't allowed.
 

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That Dunbar video was VERY old, I'd guess that nowadays he would never do/intruct somsone to do that to a dog, ESPECIALLY an aggressive dog. WHat you do when a dog is misbehaving depends very much on the bahavior when it comes to positive dog training. Generally speaking, if an alternative behavior can be taught you do that instead of punishment. Teach the dog to sit when guests coe over instead of jumping, teach them to dig in a sand box instead of the garden, teach him to use toys instead of furniture for chewing, etc. If you see them about to do the wrong thing you interrupt and redirect/cue whatever is the appropriate alternate behavior. With aggression you don't pay attention to reactions, you are trying to change the dog's emotional feelings about the scary thing it's aggressive towards. If my aggressiv dog reacts we just walk away. Ideally you shouldn't get so close that the dog reacts. Some behaviors get time outs, If my dog barks out the window and doesn't stop when told he gets put in the bathroom. However it is also important to teach them what you want. If I see someone about to walk by (which would make him bark) I get treats and reward him for staying quiet as they walk by. That way I'm not just punishing barking, I'm reinforcing quiet and helping him understand what I want. In positive training it's very important to anticipate bad behavior and try to prevent it and reward the good behavior. If I see a dog coming and I know Tucker might bark at it (he gets over excited) I'm going to start rewarding him for good behavior as soon as he sees the dog, before he has a chance to react. If he did react we'd move away fromt he dog to instill it in his head that barking means you are never going to meet that dog. The only time I used positive punishment is for object stealing. An alternate bahvior could not be taught and I can't reward him for ignoring things that are always there (he stole everything), I can't just reward him constantly, I don't even know if he's actively ignoring what's on the table. So I used a squirt bottle for that.
 

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Sorry for the typos on that post, I was in a rush. I also wanted to mention that sometimes letting a bad behavior repeatedly fail works well in a lot of situations as well. If every single time the dog tried to say, steal something off of the table he was blocked or the item was pulled away before he got to it he'd eventually give up and stop trying. Now for something like stealing it might not be possible for the people in the house to do that (the dog must NEVER succeed), but I'm sure there are other behaviors where it would work. This is also what people do for some attention seeking behaviors (barking at you, pawing, whining, nudging, etc.), you just ignore them, thus allowing the behavior to fail them, and they give up. Do keep in mind that sometimes before giving up the dog will try HARDER or try new attention seeking behaviors, but if you stick to it, eventually he'll give up.

Most positive trainers do not believe in using ANY punishment that causes pain or frightens the dog. So no leash jerks, training collars, hitting, shouting, pinching, scruffing, getting in the dog's face, shoving, alpha rolling, etc. These things are either painful or scary or a bit of both. Some people rationalize that something like a collar correction can't hurt that bad and it's not scary, but when I see a dog get yanked and then immediately hold itself low with its ears back and wag it's tail low it is obvious that he is frightened of you because of what you just did and is nervous.

The downside to a lot of positive training info you find for getting rid of unwanted behaviors is that they often do tell you to just prevent it. Dog steals, clean up so he has nothing to steal. Dog growls when you try to move him, stop moving him, teach an off command instead (those are the two problems I had that I struggled finding a way to fix...not just prevent). Now these are often easier than the actual training methods but they don't really solve the problem and leave people believing that you just can't fix these issues with positive methods. That's not true. I obviously don't know how to fix stealing without punishment, that's why I used the bottle, but I know someone on another forum who fixed a very bad stealing problem without any punishment at all, using self control building exercises and practice. Teaching a dog to accept being moved off of furniture is not that hard using positive methods, just pair pushing/pulling/lifting with a food reward, slowly increasing the intensity over time. But you almost never find this info online, though you might if you actually got a trainer. So it can be hard to figure out how to solve a problem behavior postively by just looking online, you often find the simplest/easiest methods but that doesn't mean that there isn't a positive, effective method out there that will get you what you want.

FWIW I do not at all like what Dunbar did in that video and would never consider that positive training, I personally consider it abuse. I don't like collar corrections, I don't like physical punishment. Dunbar has been heralded as one of the earliest positive dog trainers...but it was more for his method of training commands using a treat lure. You must remember he was training in an age where dog training all involved choke chains and physical molding (to teach a sit you push down the dog's butt, to teach down you push on his shoulders, etc.) So he was one of the first to use treats to train commands. But as you can see he was still using plenty of punishment outside of teaching dogs to sit, lie down, come, etc. However I do believe that he turned to positive methods around the same time as everyone else. He still uses a lot of verbal punishment though I believe, but not entirely sure.


Some other trainers who have videos and online stuff that you might enjoy looking at are Susan Garrett (a lot of her stuff is about agility but not all of it and she has some of the most enthusiastic workers I've ever seen) and Emily Larlham (kikopup on youtube...she is EXTREMELY positive and uses practically no punishment at all)

Say Yes Dog Training
Dogmantics Dog Training the official ?Kikopup? website

Were there any specific behaviors you were having issues with that you wanted ideas for how to stop?
 

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in its purest form maxy is correct. You strive to create behavior and try to avoid physical and psych corrections. Dunbar has modified his aproach but is still a fan of showing a dog your emotions (including displeasure) with with words and tone, something that the most ardent pos trainers (kikopup) try not to do.

I personally am not against corrections when appropriate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you for the clarification everyone! I admit I was pretty confused for a bit. I was used to seeing Dunbar as a positive trainer that clip seemed a bit contradicting. However Max you're right, that did look like a really old video. I don't know why that flew over my head.

I've actually started watching all of Kikopup's videos now and after looking through Ian Dunbar, Kikopup, Tab289 and Zakgeorge I think Kikopup wins as my favorite dog trainer. Thank you everyone for sharing your opinions, I really appreciate the feedback!
 
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