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Discussion Starter #1
- Dog does something I don't like, say barking.

- I call him, he comes.

- He gets a treat
 

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Well it depends n what you want from him. Do you want him to never bark ever ? Or do you want him to be quiet after he has told you there is someone at the door ?
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You are reinforcing his coming to you.
This ^ but you could inadvertently create a behavior chain: bark > recall > treat.

I would work on preventing behaviors you find undesirable and training more acceptable, incompatible or alternative behaviors.
 

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Lol - I'm no trainer, but it sounds like he's training you how to give him a treat. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
This ^ but you could inadvertently create a behavior chain: bark > recall > treat.
Lol - I'm no trainer, but it sounds like he's training you how to give him a treat. ;)
Right, this is exactly what I was concerned about.

I would work on preventing behaviors you find undesirable and training more acceptable, incompatible or alternative behaviors.
How do you go about preventing behaviour with positive reinforcement? So far it's only been useful to reinforce behaviour he already does.
 

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How do you go about preventing behaviour with positive reinforcement? So far it's only been useful to reinforce behaviour he already does.
You don't use positive reinforcement to prevent behaviors, you use management. What behaviors are you concerned about?

For barking, under what circumstances is he barking? Once you can answer that, you can implement strategies to prevent it.
 

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Ditto that you may well be creating a behavior chain.

Prevention is normally more management and supervision than training. Things like removing/limiting access to frequent problem areas, window cling to block visuals out windows and doors, crating or keeping a dog in a quiet location when not home to limit barking... Stuff like that.

Combined with training incompatible behaviors such as a settle on a mat, often the problem behavior is easily controlled.
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You teach them an incompatible behavior :) For example if your dog is in the habit of jumping to get attention you could teach them that instead sitting down is what gets them attention. Of course you need to make sure that jumping is also unrewarding at the same time.

If you are trying to stop your dog from doing something you need to give them an alternative or incompatible behavior. And you need to make sure that the behavior you are trying to prevent is unrewarding.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
after looking it up apparently you're supposed to use counter-conditioning, if I got it right it basically means you have to feed a high value treat whenever a trigger shows up to prevent the action from happening in the first place. I'm not entirely sure how i'm gonna replicate dogs walking by the house, i may have to ask a friend to bring her dog.

thanks for all the feedback, incompatible behavior sounds fairly similar to what i described above.
 

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after looking it up apparently you're supposed to use counter-conditioning, if I got it right it basically means you have to feed a high value treat whenever a trigger shows up to prevent the action from happening in the first place. I'm not entirely sure how i'm gonna replicate dogs walking by the house, i may have to ask a friend to bring her dog.

thanks for all the feedback, incompatible behavior sounds fairly similar to what i described above.
That kind of depends on why the dog is barking and, in my experience, counter conditioning for that particular scenario is difficult to do. For barking at dogs walking past the house you may want to work on prevention (e.g., window coverings, blocking access) as kmes said.
 

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Keep in mind I am not a dog trainer lol but I have heard of people teaching their dog to pick up something in their mouth when someone comes to the door or walks by outside so the dog can not bark. It also gives them something positive to do instead of barking. For example teach the dog to retrieve a certain toy when someone walks by the house, the dog can still be excited because now he can retrieve that toy but he doesn't show his excitement as barking. You should also work on a leave it command. When your dog becomes excited over something unwanted a leave it command should pull the dogs attention off that stimulus and onto you. I worked long and hard to get Virgil's leave it to the point I can trust full heartedly he will ignore a running cat crossing the road while he is off leash. Good luck!
 
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