Welcome to Day 1 of Puppy Preschool!
(Don’t know what we’re talking about? Click here.) Today we’ll cover the topic of “Positive Reinforcement Training.”
What is Positive Reinforcement Training?
In its simplest form, positive reinforcement training involves short commands that are immediately and consistently rewarded (with treats and praise) to shape behavior.
Enrolling yourself and your dog in positive reinforcement training classes goes beyond teaching your dog to sit and stay. It’s about improving communication between you and your dog and building a stronger bond. Learning the basics this way will also build the foundation for additional training and curb the development of behavioral problems.
Other Important Points
- Positive training always takes the physical and emotional well-being of the individual dog into account.
- We have an ethical responsibility to use the kindest, most humane methods available to teach our dogs how to live in our world.
- Harsh punishment damages the bond with your dog, and has him obeying out of fear. This kills spontaneity.
- Positive methods have your dog obeying, because he knows something good will happen!
- Positive methods are more humane, and MORE EFFECTIVE!
Positive Training Principles[Taken from The Power of Positive Dog Training, by Pat Miller]
All Living Things Repeat Behaviors That Are Rewarding And Avoid Behaviors That Are Not
Remembering this concept, you can teach every behavior you want your dog to do and change every behavior you don’t want. You do not have to punish your dog, you just have to make the right behavior rewarding enough that your dog will choose to do that behavior instead of an inappropriate one. You accomplish this by rewarding the behaviors you want and ignoring or preventing those you don’t want.
Think in Terms of What You Want Your Dog To Do, Not What You Want Him NOT To Do
This is the formula for modifying unwanted behavior. All you have to do is figure out how to prevent your dog from being rewarded for the behaviors you don’t want and reward him consistently and generously for the behaviors you do want.
Here is an example of Positive Reinforcement in Action
For additional information, as well as downloadable materials, on the Positive Training Method, visit our Behavior and Training Handouts page.
Stay Tuned tomorrow as we discuss potty & crate training!
About the Puppy Preschool Blog Series
Over the next few days, we’ll touch upon a variety of puppy-parenting issues that are covered, in detail, by our Behavior Training Programs Manager in her full Puppy-PreSchool Course. If you like what you get a taste of in these blog posts, sign your little guy (or gal) up for the full course, here.
Topics to Be Covered
- Sunday: About Positive Reinforcement Training
- Monday: Potty/Crate Training
- Tuesday: Play biting/Chewing
- Wednesday: Exercise and Appropriate Play
- Thursday: Socialization
- Friday: Conclusion
Stay tuned throughout the week as we deliver multi-media lessons on how to raise your puppy right. By Friday, your puppy could be a fully-fledged preschool graduate.
For more information…
…on our Puppy Preschool course, or any of our other obedience classes, just visit our website. You can also speak to our Behavior and Training Department at 954.266.6819. Classes are held at the Humane Society, 2070 Griffin Road, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312.