Category Archives: Dog training hints

Yelling at My Dogs

The “yelling” question comes up regularly for positive reinforcement-based trainers. “Am I a bad person if I yell at my dogs?” “Is it positive punishment to yell at my dogs?” And the accusatory version, “Do you NEVER yell at your dogs? … Continue reading

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Posted in Classical conditioning, Dog training hints | 21 Comments

Trick Training Bloopers

I decided a while back to teach my dogs to cross their paws as a trick. I followed the instructions on one of Emily Larlham’s excellent videos: Dog Tricks Tutorial: Cross Your Paws. But I didn’t end up making the neat, … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog training hints, Fun, Humor, Tricks | Tagged , , | 15 Comments

My Dogs Don’t Know Sit!

What if your dog’s cue for a behavior is not what you think it is? Can you be sure–absolutely sure–that the dog really understands what you want? That’s another place where punishment based training can really go awry. How often … Continue reading

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Posted in Cues, Dog training hints | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

How I Work With Deaf Dogs (Guest Post by Blanche Axton)

Blanche Axton describes her common-sense approach to training deaf dogs and why she doesn’t use vibration collars. I grew up with deaf dogs and have fostered many. While I haven’t always had a deaf dog in my home, I’ve had quite … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog training hints, Guest post | Tagged | 5 Comments

You Don’t Have to Go Through the Door Before Your Dog!

  When Annie Phenix of Phenix Dogs recently mentioned to me that the “door myth” is still alive and well, I got to wondering what that actually would look like. The advice to always precede your dog through the door is propagated by … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog training hints | Tagged , , , | 19 Comments

How To Train Your Dog to Stand Using Capturing

When people consider how to teach a dog to stand, they usually envision the action of standing up. They focus on getting the dog up on their feet from a sit or a down. But that’s the hard way to start, … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog training hints | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

“Good Sit!”

Here is a quiz. Let’s say someone says, “Sit,” to a dog, intending the word as a cue. What part of speech is the word, “Sit”? Then, what part of speech is the same word if we say, “Good sit!” afterwards? That was … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Cues, Dog training hints | Tagged , | 27 Comments

Go Sniff! Then Please Come Back!

Please share this post whenever you see someone suggest to an inexperienced trainer that she use sniffing as a reinforcer on walks. Hey. You know that thing that seems like the perfect solution to problems with your dog when walking on … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog training hints, Positive Reinforcement, Scent work | Tagged , , | 26 Comments

Bootleg Reinforcement

Auf Deutsch! -Many thanks to Debbie Jacobs, Randi Rossman, and Dr. Susan Friedman for making suggestions about the movies. Any errors are, of course, my own. Did you know that there is interesting name for that thing that messes up our … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Dog training hints, Reinforcement | Tagged , , | 53 Comments

Release Me!

Hey! It turns out I have some bragging rights I haven’t collected on. So here goes. Back in Spring 2013, I wrote two posts about practical issues with multiple dogs that were both quite popular. A Secret for Training Two Dogs delineated a trick I learned … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog training hints, Multiple dogs | Tagged , | 25 Comments