Category Archives: Escape/Avoidance

If You’re Loving It, Why Leave?

Is “choice” a code word for negative reinforcement? It can be. Seems like that’s the context where I see it pop up the most.  I’ve written a lot about choice. Two of my major points are: Many people are confused … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Choice, Escape/Avoidance, Negative Reinforcement, Positive Reinforcement | 9 Comments

But It Worked for My Dog!!

What happens when someone shares a “success” story about training with aversives? Here’s my response to a commenter who did so on one of my previous posts. A Parable Once there was a woman named Reva who had a serious health condition that needed … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Behavior analysis, Escape/Avoidance, Negative Reinforcement, Punishment | Tagged , , | 31 Comments

But I’ve Seen Stressed-Out Dogs During Positive Reinforcement Training Too!

Thank you to Jennifer Titus of CARE for Reactive Dogs for editorial advice. All errors and awkward moments are mine alone. Citing “stressed-out R+ dogs” in an argument is an old chestnut that comes around regularly. The writer usually describes a training session he or she witnessed where a … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Behavior analysis, Escape/Avoidance, Negative Reinforcement, Operant conditioning, Positive Reinforcement | 10 Comments

What Does Shower Mold Have to Do With Dog Training?

Am I really reaching today, or what? You be the judge! There is a series of articles in the behavioral psychology literature that questions whether the distinction between positive and negative reinforcement is important.* These papers are often quoted by people who … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Behavior analysis, Escape/Avoidance, Human psychology, Negative Reinforcement, Positive Reinforcement | 37 Comments

7 Effects of Punishment

Here are seven documented possible side effects of the use of punishment, negative reinforcement, and of aversives in general. Escape/Avoidance: If you hurt or scare your dog, it will likely try to avoid you, the places you frequent, and whatever else it associates with … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Escape/Avoidance, Fear, Negative Reinforcement, Punishment, Training philosophy | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Let’s Talk about Using Aversives in Training. I’ll Go First!

Today’s post is about being  thoughtful about the use of aversives. I write about that frequently, so how about if I describe what I mean by “thoughtful”? I am going to present a description of an aversive method I used to use. I am … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Behavior analysis, Escape/Avoidance, Negative Reinforcement, Punishment, Terminology | Tagged , , , | 20 Comments

How Did The Aversive Get There? A Call for Honesty

I am mystified by one particular argument of those who use protocols for fearful or reactive dogs other than desensitization/counterconditioning (DS/CC). These other protocols often use negative reinforcement; if not that, then sometimes desensitization without counterconditioning; sometimes extinction; sometimes habituation. People … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Desensitization and Counterconditioning, Escape/Avoidance, Extinction, Fear, Negative Reinforcement, Terminology | Tagged , , , , | 49 Comments

Thresholds: The Movie

I have made a movie about thresholds in dog training. It gives a quick overview of the work that I presented in my webinar for the Pet Professional Guild. (Click here for a script of the movie; there is a lot of … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Behavior analysis, Classical conditioning, Desensitization and Counterconditioning, Dogs' perceptions, Escape/Avoidance, Negative Reinforcement, Stress Signals, Terminology | Tagged , , , | 28 Comments

Discussing Negative Reinforcement Responsibly

I didn’t give today’s post a cute title, because this situation makes me very, very sad. There are some strange claims going around the dog training community. They are not being made by shock trainers, although I am sure they appreciate … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Behavior analysis, Escape/Avoidance, Negative Reinforcement, Operant conditioning, Terminology | Tagged | 56 Comments

Thresholds in Dog Training…HOW Many?

I recently gave a webinar entitled, “Over Threshold: The Changing Definition,” for the Pet Professional Guild (PPG). The webinar is still available as a recording, and I encourage any interested folks to check it out. It is not expensive. (And … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Behavior analysis, Classical conditioning, Desensitization and Counterconditioning, Dog training hints, Escape/Avoidance, Event announcement, Negative Reinforcement, Terminology | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments