Articles & Posts

Training & Behavior Articles

Training the “Crazy Dog”

How to Write a Training Plan — Part 1

How to Write a Training Plan — Part 2

Crime & Negative Punishment — How to Eliminate Unwanted Behavior in a Toddler

Chocolate — What You Really Need to Know

Help! We’re Being Invaded!

Don’t Socialize the Dog!

Should You Use No-Reward Markers?

Behavior Blog Posts

Behavior Concepts from the Avengers!

If there’s anything I’m particularly known for, it might be the integration of nerdy geekdom and behavior analysis. So in the spirit of “you got chocolate in my peanut butter!“, here’s some of what of I was thinking during the Avengers opening night six-movie marathon.

The Exploitation of the Mind

Today’s riddle: How is a 5-year-old human like a spotted hyena? (Aside from eating habits and destructive potential!)

Waiting for the Mexican Elevator

How powerful is reinforcement and superstitious behavior? I’ve been in this hotel four days, I know exactly what is going on behaviorally, and I still press the call button more than once. I’m ashamed and fascinated at the same time.

Angry Birds and Behavior — Or, How To Train Your Pet Like An Addictive Casual Video Game

Do you want reliable trained behaviors? Do you want your learner to enjoy the experience and crave more learning? Borrow some ideas from the best.

When You Should NOT Socialize Your Dog (Parts 1 & 2)

That’s a typo, right? I mean, a professional trainer would never advocate against socialization, right?

“This Candy Is Not For Eating!”

UGH.  It was vile.  It was deeply sour, some sort of faux fruit goo, and I hated it.  (I adore chocolate and related confections.  I dislike artificial fruit flavorings, and I really dislike sour candy.)  I couldn’t exactly spit it out into the church pew, so I chewed just enough of it that it wouldn’t choke me and then swallowed it to get it out of my mouth.

TAGteach for Firearm Safety and Shooting

Owning a gun and not being absolutely competent with it not only didn’t make sense, the concept was distinctly offensive to me.

For want of a nail, the shoe was lost….

So, a few years ago a man hurried through a simple routine task which no one would ever see, and last week a backhoe came through the living room window.  Cause and effect.

TAG! I’m It! (self TAGteach for skiing)

It’s a great example of contrasting traditional instruction versus TAGteach and the resulting… results. It’s also kinda humorous, because it features me tumbling tail over teakettle down a snowy slope more than a few times, and that’s never not funny.

An Easy Pill to Swallow — Training to Take Pills the Easy Way

There’s a fabulous cartoon series on how to get a cat to swallow a pill, in which the feckless humans tried to plead with the cat,  ratchet the defiant jaws open, disguise the pill in delicious food, etc., all without success. I have to give the dogs pills occasionally, and I’m far too lazy to want to go through a hassle each time — nor can I count on always having a food product gooey and smelly enough to disguise the offensive pill.

So I’ve taught the dogs to take pills plain, on cue.

Service Animal Etiquette. Seriously, People.

Service dogs are medical equipment, and they deserve and require respect. Here are specific examples of rude and even dangerous behavior we’ve personally encountered in public. If you wouldn’t do it to a pair of crutches, or a wheelchair, or a scooter, or a breathing aid, don’t do it to a service dog.

 

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