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Andres Martin said:
The idea is to "funnel" the dog into the correct position. If he's wide, stim; ahead, stim; behind, stim. And stim UNTIL he's in position.
Yep, exactly.

Andres Martin said:
I found that the (low) level of electricity will likely have to increase a bit (haha) as the novelty wears off on your dog.
Sometimes this happens. But about as often, the dog becomes sensitized to the stim and you can lower the level. "Toughness" of the dog doesn't seem to be a factor in which way you go with the stim level.

Andres Martin said:
The idea is to cause discomfort. This works - I think - even if the dog is NOT SO GOOD, because in theory, from the handler come only DEPOSITS.
It also helps build the bond between the dog and the handler because the handler becomes, at least in the first part of the training, a "safe spot." This is perfectly acceptable for pets, but not so good for dogs that have to work away from their handlers such as SAR, police dogs or competition dogs. With these dogs, as soon as the safe spot becomes established in the dog's mind, another behavior is taught that "breaks" this belief.

Andres Martin said:
This is interesting."
I find it fascinating! I love it when the light bulb comes on for the dogs and other trainers as well.
 

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Selena van Leeuwen said:
I think I get the point of this escape training (it is a bit harder to understand while having to translate it)
Let's see if I can simplify it. Escape training is where the dog learns to escape the discomfort of the stim by complying with the command. He learns that his behavior makes the stim stop.

Selena van Leeuwen said:
But I was wondering, does it work with every dog?
The old saying is that "nothing works for every dog." But I'm going to have to disagree. Every dog, in fact every animal, wants to escape that which it finds unpleasant. "Pleasure seeking, pain (or discomfort) avoiding" is another old saying. Dogs are capable of learning by themselves how to do that if they're shown a few times.

Perhaps there is a dog that escape training doesn't work on, but I've yet to find him.

Selena van Leeuwen said:
If have continious (low)stim, the e-collar automatically stop after 12 sec. What will you do with a dog who fights the stim correction? You can´t get them through the fighting in 12 sec.
You don't give the dog to opportunity to fight through it. During the teaching phase the dog is always on leash and you guide him into the desired behavior. Occasionally, through confusion a dog won't comply and you can't get to him to guide him in less than 12 seconds. This can happen when you start distance work. It takes you longer than the 12 seconds to cover the distance to guide him into the proper behavior. When this happens you use a technique that I call "the bounce." This is done by lifting your finger off the button after 7-10 seconds (before the timer shuts off the stim) and then, as quickly as you can, get back on the button. This interrupts the timer and it starts over again. Practice a bit so that you're only off the button for the briefest of moments. The dog won't even notice the cessation of the stim. When you get good at this it will be in the neighborhood (I estimate) of 1/10th of a second.
 

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David Frost said:
Another way of looking at 'escape training' is the way many people teach a dog to "sit". We place pressure on the rump, pull steadily up on th leash, guiding the dog into the proper position. The instant the dog is in the correct position, the pressure goes away and the behavior is reinforced. The dog assumed the proper position to "escape" the pressure.
David states this very clearly. The advantage of the Ecollar in this form of work is that the "pressure" can be maintained until the dog complies. With a leash and correction collar the pressure is on and off very quickly once you're past the teaching phase and move from guidance to corrections. Of course another correction can be given and/or you can keep on giving many light corrections. But many dogs don't take well to this and protest it in various ways. That interferes with the training. With the Ecollar the stim level can be kept at a very low level and applied continuously, without any breaks. I think this makes for very clear communication as to when the dog has done the right thing, that is, he's complied with the command. It's very clear to the dog when the stim has shut off.
 

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Woody Taylor said:
How successful are novice folks with escape training? Do you all see it that enhances, detracts, or does "nothing" towards the handler/dog bond?
What a great question! It takes a new K-9 handler about six months to a year (and some never get it) to learn the technique of delivering a proper correction. They usually get the "pop" part, but have difficulty with the "release" part. Many of them never develop the skill of first putting slack into a tight leash so they never learn to properly deliver a correction. It takes hand speed, some strength (not a lot) timing, coordination and balance.

With an Ecollar there's no need for hand speed, strength or balance. Of course you still need coordination and timing. And so I think it's easier for a person to use an Ecollar than it is to teach them to use a leash and correction collar.

I've got over a hundred emails from near-novices to dog training who have bought themselves an Ecollar, read my articles and used them to train their dogs to their complete satisfaction. Usually these are people who had failed with other methods.

As to the "bond." Because the first command that is usually taught with the Ecollar and escape training is the recall, the dog quickly learns that the handler has some near-mystical power. (BTW it's this statement that earned me the dubious name of "voodoo" as applied by Steve Leigh). The handler's mere presence makes the discomfort that the dog is feeling, stop. All the dog has to do is to move closer to the handler and he's made comfortable again. The handler becomes the source of comfort. For the rest of the teaching he's showing the dog how to achieve comfort. I think that makes for a great bond. With conventional methods force is used to achieve dominance. That works for many, if not most dogs, but can lead to serious problems with some dogs! It sometimes introduces conflict and that can easily lead to confusion.
 

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Woody Taylor said:
I still have problems thinking through how the dog doesn't figure out that think in your hand/that movement of your arm/that flick of your finger isn't associated with whatever is happening to it, whether it's a hard or mild stim.
Unless you make a big show of pressing the button, it's just the movement of a finger. If people have done this sometimes dogs figure out that the TX (transmitter) causes their discomfort. Then there are a few tricks, such as having someone else hold the TX behind their back and stim the dog at the appropriate moment, putting it into a pocket, etc.

Any method of training that applies pressure and then relieves it when the dog complies is "escape training." This applies to Koehler and Koehler-like methods as well. You can't hide the fact that a leash correction is coming from the handler but it doesn't seem to make any difference.

Woody Taylor said:
this has always been my reservation about using escape training for pet/sport dogs...that corrections need to be viewed as coming from the owner, so they recognize you as being in control of them regardless.
I'm not so sure that this is really the case, that dogs need to realize that corrections come from the owner so that they can be controlled. I've come across quite a few dogs that won't allow this. I've known a few that were put to sleep because they were just too tough to be dominated in this conventional way.

Dominance in the wild dog world is only very rarely established by out and out combat. If it was I think they'd have become extinct long ago. The slightest injury can become infected and can result in the death of the dog. Dogs mostly establish dominance through the force of their personality and mock combat, not the real thing. When I first joined this forum I was asked to post an article I'd written called "establishing dominance." It can be found at

http://www.workingdogforum.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=394

It sounds like more voodoo until you try it. It allows a human to show the dog that he's dominant without any conflict, without any confusion and without any danger.
 

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Woody Taylor said:
If escape training convinces the dog that 1. the best place to be is next to its handler
If this occurs then either stim levels that are too high have been used or the recall has been worked too much.

Woody Taylor said:
2. weird stuff can happen when I'm away from the handler...are there cases where the dog's capabilities get undermined by lack of confidence for any number of reasons related to the training it's underwent?
The way to prevent this is, as soon as you see that the dog is getting clingy (I call this Velcro dog) you teach the sit or another behavior that has the dog getting stimmed while he's right next to the handler. This breaks the "superstition" that the handler is a safe spot.
 
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