Friday, January 30, 2009

Doing what works

What do you think it is that governs the choice of dog training methods?

Looking at two polar opposites, though there are infinite shades between the two, there are all-positive reinforcement and all positive punishment.

Being biased towards using positive methods, I just don't understand how or why someone would chose to use physical corrections with their dogs.

I know that's why agility appeals to me, though I do cringe at overtly rough handling.

I do use negative punishment however, and if I have that correct it is the name for taking away something good based on the dog doing something incorrect. For instance, when DJ jumps out of the car before he is released, he gets put back in. Or if he tries to start eating before being released, the food bowl gets picked back up.

I do really hate doing the food bowl thing, not that I've had to do it much for the past couple of years, anything to do with dinner has a very quick learning curve.

To that end I'm pretty easy going as a dog owner, I would just feel like an asshole not letting a dog sniff when they want as long as we keep a reasonable pace. I feel like we mostly have an understanding that works for us in that regard and other "controversial" aspects of dog keeping – like don't let dogs on the bed, don't let them go through doors before you and other nonsense.

I'm an amateur and novice at that but come on, how can that not strike anyone as superstitious?

I think my role model for dog training is now Sylvia Trkman. The way she writes is such a refreshing change of pace from dog whispering dominance obsessed people that have taken over the discussion of dog training in the U.S. Be partners with your dog, not their boss. Love that!

No comments:

Post a Comment