I arrive at my hotel in France…..It was a long flight….I forgot my toothbrush, face wash and need to contact my friend who is supposed to meet me.
The problem is that I don’t speak French and don’t have a translator. What do I do???
Although the story above is fictional….I believe our dogs experience this same scenario when they try to understand what we are saying to them. We need a form of communication that both of us understand.
Guess what??!! We already have it! Many of you have already heard of ‘Clicker Training’…….and ‘Clicker Training’ is a form of ‘Marker Training’.
‘Marker Training’ forms a bridge from the behavior we want ……to the reward for that behavior. This type of training is based on what we call….’Operant Conditioning’. I am not a science geek but I do love to learn from people who are much smarter than I am. Let’s just say in layman’s terms that Marker Training uses positive or negative responses to a behavior in order to make that behavior more or less frequent. In other words…..if I want my dog to repeat a behavior……I need to reward that behavior.
Our dogs learn by receiving a reward in less than a second following the behavior. Since this is humanly impossible……we use a ‘Marker’………to ‘Mark’ the behavior we want and to let our dogs know that a reward is coming. This is why we say that the marker is a ‘Bridge’ to the reward.
This may sound complex and there is a learning curve……..but it is much simpler to learn how to communicate with your dog than to try to change bad behavior later.
With everything in life…….there is a reward to persevering and learning a new skill.
As humans…….the more we exercise our brain…….the better it works!!! Now that is a reason to learn to communicate with your dog!!! Just think how amazed your friends will be when they watch how well your dog is listening to you!!
Tell us what you need and we’ll be happy to schedule an appointment.
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