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The Dog Trainer : How to Get Your Dog to Stop Barking and Lunging on Leash: Quick and Dirty Tips ™

Some folks like listening instead of watching or reading here is a short podcast that I like on: “how to stop bad behavior on walks” & why these methods work in the long run better than just yelling and jerking on the leash.

Source: The Dog Trainer : How to Get Your Dog to Stop Barking and Lunging on Leash : Quick and Dirty Tips ™

Dog body Language Part 2

If you liked part 1, you’ll find even more interesting information in this video.

Understanding Dog Body Language – Part 2

How to Train your Dog to NOT PULL on a Leash! EXTREME LEASH PULLING, BARKING, LUNGING and JUMPING! – YouTube

The important points to remember from this video below are

  1. be patient.
  2. Help the dog learn to focus on you before the trigger gets him out of control.
  3. The handler learns the dogs distance from the triggers that set him off. In this dogs case many things in the environment trigger the dog into excitement mode, especially trees. So the handler has to work with the dog very close to the beginning of the walk, so be it. watch as the dog get calmer with repeated attempts.
  4. This is the type of training is when allot of food is effective. The tree containing squirrels are really, really exciting for a dog. So you have to become more exciting than a squirrel and the next better thing is usually food. Really yummy food. like chicken, lunchmeat or cheese. This method is called “counter conditioning”. The “conditioning” happened automatically when the dog learned to lung and bark at trees because some really fun stuff happened. To make staying with you on a polite walk a new habit, you have to make you more appealing then the fun of his learned doggie game of lunging/barking at trees. The process of doing it is called “counter-conditioning”. It takes a long time usually months of practice for a dog to give up an old habit and replace it with the new behavior you want

EXTREME LEASH PULLING, BARKING, LUNGING and JUMPING!

How Dogs Learn- Video by Dr Yin

How dogs learn

Great Video! A must see for all who love dogs.

If you are a client of Dr Smith’s – watch this video.If your dog has bad habits – watch this video. . If you want a better relationship with your dog – watch this video!

Add neurons, subtract anxiety

Wonderful news from science on the treatment of anxiety in both animals and humans. Fluoxetine, (a medicine for the treatment of anxiety) has been shown to stimulate the growth of new nerve cells. Specifically, cells in the memory storage and sorting area of the brain. As new cells grew, individuals were able to calm down more quickly. They were able to tell the difference between old (anxiety) memories and new (positive) memories. Several studies were done where positive memories were created in  people and animals. The circumstances that trigger an anxiety memory were copied, but with a slight change (like room color or smell) . Plus, and most important was that the events in the new circumstance ended with something  positive for the individual. (This type behavior therapy is called desensitization/counter-conditioning).  Individuals who grew more new cells, more quickly reduced their anxiety or fear.

How did new cells result in less anxiety? There is increase of new cells available to remember new events. Then, new, but similar events are paired with a positive outcome.  Sequences of events are stored in the brain as “memory patterns” The individual remembers, both the old and new memory patterns. With practice or repetition of patterns with the positive outcomes, the individual will learn the difference between old, fearful, v.s. new, more positive, memory patterns. The new memory patterns compete with the old pattern and the best outcome wins.  The result is less and less fear. This works, as long as the outcomes of similar events remain positive.The new cells, that were stimulated to grow by an anti-depressants, more quickly create new memory patterns. The final observation was that the new, positive, memory patterns are then stored long term in the brain and remain after the medication is stopped.

Then the rule “use it or lose it”, comes into play. Anxiety can return if old memory patterns are practiced more than the new memory patterns.  This leads to a regression or return to fearful behaviors and emotions. A little regression is normal, whenever life is stressful, but long term stress or just lack of practicing the skills, that once work, lead to more serious regression.

This is the first evidence that shows a rapid change in fear/anxiety is directly proportion to new cell growth and that medications increase growth of new cells.

In summary: Anxiety emotional states change more quickly when two things happen together.

1. Beneficial change in the environment, so that situations that creates fear/anxiety are changed and have positive outcome. (or at least block/prevent a negative outcome).

2. Anti-depressant Fluoxetine  at therapeutic dose.

This study explains, what has been observed, in behavior medicine for a long time. First, that medications alone are not enough to change anxiety. Second, the combination of  medication and behavior modification (or therapy) are the quickest treatment for anxiety. Finally, that the improvement is permanent.

Here is a link to the study:

Add neurons, subtract anxiety.

Training dogs to walk on a loose leash (with a clicker)

I like the detailed explanations that have been added to this video.

/www.youtube.com/embed/r2nOPK_GOKY

There are many ways to train a dog to ‘walk on a loose leash”. Here is another method that is alittle different.She slows it down enough to understand the technique.. Whenever training a dog, or any animal, the details of how the technique is done moment to moment are very important until you get the hang of it.

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A word about ‘bloopers” and attention span.  Training the dog to do incorrect, unintended behaviors I call “Bloopers”.  It is easy to accidently train in extra steps in any method. For example a common one …  you say “sit” dog does nothing. Next you repeat sit, sit, siittt, SIT!… then the dog sits”. You have just poluted the verbal command of sit with, a sentence with a loud vocal punch.

This happens when the trainer attention lags alittle and we fall into bad habits. For the dog and the trainer, keep time of the repetitions short. The dog can maintain focused attention on learning for 3-7 minutes. For us however, when adding a new complex skill, are attention maybe 1 to 2 minutes. So stop for 2 minutes, pet your dog and breath. Then go back to training.

Dogs study us to figure out the thing we do immediately before they execute a behavior that results in the click/treat. If you scratch your nose a few times, that becomes part of the cue.  Hand or body movements are more meaningful to the dog so they remember what we do more than any verbal command. Keep your body still except any discrete handsignals. When training a word as the cue, speak a single word, then a short pause, then the handsignal (that the dog already knows). It still takes alot of repetition over 30 to 90 days for the dog to really learn a word and be able respond  in any situation. Just like humans, toddlers take months to really learn and understand all the useage of a word.

So ….  don’t yell, unless there is allot of background noise. Your dog is not deaf, he actually can hear 5 times better than you. Or you may accidently train the dog to only respond to Yelled commands.

 

If you want to know more about how dogs learn  look at my post on the ABCs of learning.

 

 

Teaching-“Enough” -by Patricia McConnell

Excellent skill for dog to learn. Useful when you want the dog to settle down. Very important Skill for dogs’ who seek constant attention. and of course we all want/need some personal (non-dog) time each day.

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