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Discussion Starter #1
Are you a +R/-P only, balanced, or +P/-R only?

Why? or Why not?

I'm +R/-P only. I used to be balanced but I have converted to force free training and found I had great results with a lot of dogs I've worked with!

My Chihuahua x (Peanut) is fearful. I used to correct him for growling and biting me when I clipped his nails. I found out that conditioning was a thing, and I started conditioning him to clippers. Now, I can clip his nails without any problem!

My dad's Rottweiler was a pain. He didn't listen for the first year of his life. My dad was very forceful towards him, and he didn't listen to my dad. I started training him with +R and he started to come when called (even without treats), was able to be off leash and didn't pull on leash anymore.

I personally don't like aversives because I like to show my dog what I want, rather than what I don't want. I want to set my dog up to succeed, even if my training takes longer. I also don't want to cause my dog pain or discomfort.
 

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I would say I'm majority +R/-P in training, with small exceptions. In instances where I need to teach a dog NOT to do something (so not "I would prefer you to do this instead" instances but "I don't care WHAT else you do do NOT DO THAT") than I will use +P.

For instance my girl has always been great with cats, and then one day while at a friend's (who has a cat) she suddenly chased the cat out of nowhere. I clapped my hands (to startle her), yelled "NO!", grabbed her by the collar, and removed her from the room. To her, this is aversive as she is easily frightened and is quite sensitive (while other dogs may not have been phased in the slightest) and it's much stronger a negative reaction than I've ever had to give her before. When she came back in she looked at the cat, then looked away, I rewarded. So there are instances where I will +P to get my message of "STOP IMMEDIATELY" across, and then return to +R for better behavior alternatives. However I don't think it's a constructive approach for learning over time.

I am also not against the use of electric shock collars in instances of safety where the dog is going down a bad path in pursuit of interest/entertainment (e.g. approaching dangerous items/animals, chasing cars, etc).
 

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I'm just tossing this in here now as these types of threads typically get out of hand quickly... please review the DF rules before posting. I am specifically referring to: 1) the types of training that may or may not be suggested here i.e. - no aversives and 2) be nice or be civil or don't post.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Balanced, as much +R as possible, -P sometimes, management when necessary but choose -R, +P over management if management is long term and leaves a dog under-exercised, isolated, under-stimulated.
 
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Short, undetailed answer...

Very heavily +R. I do utilize -P. Will use -R but it's limited to pretty much BAT or similar training utilizing the relief of social pressure as reinforcement. I avoid +P. ;)
 

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Heavily R+. I would say 90% of the time. I use -P on walks mainly. (As in you pull, we stop walking). Never any +P.
 
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Balanced, as much +R as possible, -P sometimes, management when necessary but choose -R, +P over management if management is long term and leaves a dog under-exercised, isolated, under-stimulated.
Same. :)
 

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I only use +R and -P.

Here's why.

When you train with +P, the results are not always predictable. If you train your dog to sit by pushing down on her back, she might sit, but she might also just walk away or do something else to avoid you. Even if she does sit, she is not learning to sit on her own. She is learning not to resist your force.

With +R and clicker training, you can train any type of animal. Even a fish. If you tried to train a fish using +P, the fish would just swim away. It's not learning how to do something, it's just learning how to avoid an unpleasant experience.

I believe that +R can work on ANY dog. You just have to have the patience to let the dog learn at their own pace. Without the temptation to suppress behavior with fear.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I only use +R and -P.

Here's why.

When you train with +P, the results are not always predictable. If you train your dog to sit by pushing down on her back, she might sit, but she might also just walk away or do something else to avoid you. Even if she does sit, she is not learning to sit on her own. She is learning not to resist your force.

With +R and clicker training, you can train any type of animal. Even a fish. If you tried to train a fish using +P, the fish would just swim away. It's not learning how to do something, it's just learning how to avoid an unpleasant experience.

I believe that +R can work on ANY dog. You just have to have the patience to let the dog learn at their own pace. Without the temptation to suppress behavior with fear.
I highly agree (on all your points)!!!
 

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I find people get too caught up on methods personally, they pick one and stick with it whether it works for them or not. Adverse is all perspective - some believe that a sharp verbal command is adverse.

Wasn't too many books on raising a baby when I was born, now everyone wants to be an expert. Same with dogs, everyone wants to write a book and be the champion. We're all trying to drive a nail - just a matter of what tool you use. Some tools take longer than others.

I don't subscribe to any particular training model, sometimes positive reinforcement, sometimes balanced. I don't believe in punishing or harming an animal. I do believe in adjusting behaviors on the spot, introducing dogs to the unsure triggers as they go rather than removing a dog from a thing that they are unsure about. Some people find this adverse - flooding - but to me, removing a dog from a simple unsure situation can be adverse. I don't use treats.

It's all perspective.
 

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I only use +R and -P.

Here's why.

When you train with +P, the results are not always predictable. If you train your dog to sit by pushing down on her back, she might sit, but she might also just walk away or do something else to avoid you. Even if she does sit, she is not learning to sit on her own. She is learning not to resist your force.

With +R and clicker training, you can train any type of animal. Even a fish. If you tried to train a fish using +P, the fish would just swim away. It's not learning how to do something, it's just learning how to avoid an unpleasant experience.

I believe that +R can work on ANY dog. You just have to have the patience to let the dog learn at their own pace. Without the temptation to suppress behavior with fear.
I can agree with you there. I teach all new behaviours clicker style. I'm not sure if anyone teaches with +p, but pushing into a sit would be -r, negative reinforcement, dog moves from discomfort to comfort.

So many anacronyms to get our heads around. Anyone up to a primer? I'm still nursing a sprained hand.
 

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I can agree with you there. I teach all new behaviours clicker style. I'm not sure if anyone teaches with +p, but pushing into a sit would be -r, negative reinforcement, dog moves from discomfort to comfort.

So many anacronyms to get our heads around. Anyone up to a primer? I'm still nursing a sprained hand.
Oh dear! It's so difficult to get the acronyms right and which is which! I decided to re-read my guide for it after reading your reply. I think you're right on it being -R. Thanks for correcting me on that.

As for +P, people do still use it a lot in training. I should have used a slightly different example in my first post about it. Let's say someone is teaching their dog to sit. So they say the word "sit", then they might yank on the dog's leash in a prong collar and put them into position that way when they don't respond. They might say "Oh she's being stubborn" or "my dog is being dominant and doesn't want to comply to my sit command".... the dog just doesn't know what sit means!

This is why I love capturing/shaping behavior. The dog learns that doing a specific behavior earns a reward, so he has a motivation to learn in the first place. Then you'll get the dog doing loops of the behavior for you on their own. Then all you have to do is put the cue on the beginning and BOOM, behavior learned. And you never have to even touch the dog.
 

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Agreed. I love shaping.
And no probs about the alphabet soup here, necessary to use all these p's & r's to keep things short, but must be intimidating to some.
I run about with tiny pieces of hotdog and other enticements, thats +R.
My dog loves LAT--Look at That game, he looks at a dog (or other scary or exciting thing) and gets a treat.
 

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My trainer is strictly R+ with clicker training. So that's mainly what I do. However I probably use what some would consider aversions. I make a short and sharp sound when she's doing something unfavorable (dig, taunt others, bark, eat plants) and if she redirects back to me she gets reinforcement. I know some feel that's aversive. I'm not sure how R+ community avoids aversive strategies when the dog is doing something dangerous to others or himself. With all the treating I feel like sometimes I'm rewarding negative behaviors. And my puppy isn't generalizing commands very well. I work with behavior modification in children and that's the biggest complaint about using only positive reinforcement - that they learn the skill but can't generalize it

And many, many places still use shock collars and punishment. It took me a long time to find a trainer that didn't.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
My trainer is strictly R+ with clicker training. So that's mainly what I do. However I probably use what some would consider aversions. I make a short and sharp sound when she's doing something unfavorable (dig, taunt others, bark, eat plants) and if she redirects back to me she gets reinforcement. I know some feel that's aversive. I'm not sure how R+ community avoids aversive strategies when the dog is doing something dangerous to others or himself. With all the treating I feel like sometimes I'm rewarding negative behaviors. And my puppy isn't generalizing commands very well. I work with behavior modification in children and that's the biggest complaint about using only positive reinforcement - that they learn the skill but can't generalize it

And many, many places still use shock collars and punishment. It took me a long time to find a trainer that didn't.
Trying to find any large dog breeder that doesn't use aversive collars is so hard! If I ever get a dog from a reputable breeder, I want them to have the same views on training as me so I know I can always go to them and ask questions, but so many large dog breeders use aversives!
 

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Trying to find any large dog breeder that doesn't use aversive collars is so hard! If I ever get a dog from a reputable breeder, I want them to have the same views on training as me so I know I can always go to them and ask questions, but so many large dog breeders use aversives!
There's a lot of places around me that are 10-14 day camps where you send your dog and get them back trained. As someone who has been doing only positive reinforcement for 2 months - I know they have to be using aversive strategies. You can't fully train a dog in two weeks using only positive reinforcement. That's what's so frustrating about it to someone who isn't a dog trainer - it's slow! I'm not a very patient person but I just want to be able to take my dog around my family and to the park! Not asking much. Maybe one day :(
 

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I am mainly +R, -P when it comes to training my dog, but I do verbally correct dogs quite often when I'm at work. When you're controlling a group of 30-some dogs, verbal corrections and physical redirection are often a necessity.
 

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There's a lot of places around me that are 10-14 day camps where you send your dog and get them back trained. As someone who has been doing only positive reinforcement for 2 months - I know they have to be using aversive strategies. You can't fully train a dog in two weeks using only positive reinforcement. That's what's so frustrating about it to someone who isn't a dog trainer - it's slow! I'm not a very patient person but I just want to be able to take my dog around my family and to the park! Not asking much. Maybe one day :(
I know!! Even a Border Collie with behavior issues won't be fixed in 10-14 days.
 
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