Motivation Concepts-Dog Training

Motivational Concepts

Dogs can only have fun with the handler.  We can do things with a dog that we couldn’t get away with a tiger.  This is because we have a relationship with our dogs.  Relationship with motivation is important.  Good motivation should build a relationship.

Nothing in Life is Free, being fair providing resources and providing fun.

Frustration, if used properly can build a dog’s motivation.

Rolling food, better running with the food.  Running with food you are more valuable because you become part of the game.

Tug o war, they can’t play tug by themselves.  That makes you more valuable.  Lots of opportunity for feedback loops.  Rules are import, raw drive is not good, but used as a reward and balance rule making with the dog’s passion for this activity.  Don’t do so many rules that you squash the dog’s passion.  Each dog will behave differently.

Movement is motivating, be part of the reward.

ENGAGMENT; my dog pays attention to me and wants something from me.  We use strictly reward based system to build engagement.   

What does your dog do AFTER he has earned his reward?  Check out and go sniff or go crazy trying to figure out how to get me to produce the next reward. 

Training can only be successful with engagement.  Just like if you were trying to teach someone math who is day dreaming about being in Aruba.

Post reinforcement pause, the drop off in focus after your dog has earned a reinforcer.  We want to get the dog the shortest possible pause by being fun and novel.  We also want to be consistently more reinforcing then the environment.

Interactive reward events, I want the dog to want to interact with me.  We will build games that become rewards.  We practice the game until the dog really likes it then we can start to use it as a reinforcer.  The more motivated the dog the easier it is to teach and the easier it is to work through insecurities. Interactive reward games build a relationship with your dog. 

How do we get our dog to listen when they are worked up?

We build a reward that becomes a tool to practice listening while they are excited.  “Yes, I know you really want to get this ball, but you still have to sit.” 


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