Monthly Archives: September 2014

Rest in Peace, Dr. Sophia Yin

I cannot add anything to what has already been said so eloquently of the tragic, untimely passing of veterinary behaviorist Dr. Sophia Yin. In her honor I am posting two of her helpful handling videos and linking to Steve Dale’s tribute … Continue reading

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Posted in Tribute | 7 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

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Posted in Behavior Science, Escape/Avoidance, Human psychology, Negative Reinforcement, Positive Reinforcement | 37 Comments

Puppies Need an Off Switch! (Puppy Lesson Four)

So how many of you with puppies out there wish sometimes that you could flip a switch to turn them off, just for a little bit? Catch your breath, do the dishes, sit down for just a minute? I have … Continue reading

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Posted in Puppy Training | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

9 Effects of Punishment

Here are nine 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 … Continue reading

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

You Can’t Cure MY Fear By Shoving Cookies at Me!

I think it’s so interesting when someone says that. Every so often I hear or read a confident claim from someone saying that desensitization/counterconditioning (DS/CC) wouldn’t work on them.  They seem offended at the very idea that food would help them overcome their fear. The … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior Science, Classical conditioning, Desensitization and Counterconditioning, Fear, Human psychology | Tagged , , | 19 Comments