Lyn Chen said:
I do understand your training methods and the results you get. Believe it or not when I first saw similar pictures, I was a little less than impressed because like you said, I first thought it was simply 'putting' the dog in such a position.
My mistake Lyn. I realized it could be construed as such.
However I did try it out, or at least a semblance of it--working with my dog to overcome strange and often embarassing situations, and I've seen a certain improvement towards parts of his behaviour. One example is we cross horizontal logs above ground that, on his own, he can't traverse because he would slip and fall--he has to lean on me to be able to crosss it. I also help him up trees and direct him to cross certain difficult ledges in order to get to a certain location. Unfortunately there is a limit to what I can do with him, being I live in the middle of the city with only manicured lawns and playgrounds to play in, and I'm not strong enough to help him in some situations. Next month I'm taking a trip up the mountains and we'll see how far we go. There's a hanging bridge there too.
Lyn, if you put a pup bonded as it may be in an uncomfortable position on an obstacle new and scary to him, then most likely and being an honest creature, it may whine, jump off and run away. Next he may avoid you like a plague. Like in humans, the will of self-preservation is always strong. So there's got to be something else, that the pup chooses to obey and stay.
Well, I hope that the improvements on his behaviour that youve seen in him include increased "attachment" and responsiveness to you, and significantly became calmer and more focused to you enough to try a little more serious" workouts.
I suppose you don't have to look for a hanging bridge. :lol: :lol: The world is one big obstacle course, if you know what I mean. I suppose there are bodies of water nearby that you can cross. You may put up a ladder leaning on that tree or mount it horizontally to work his footing, or work on chairs, tables, tires, barrels, etc.. A lot can be done without even leaving home. I live in the city too and with my age, have lesser chances of going up the mountains, though some may just be 2 hours drive. Stresses in natural environments will be much lesser and far between compared to what I have set up my dog to do right in my own backyard. But of course, it's still not a reason not to go out there to proof it.
Anyway, good luck on your trip, I hope it will be a vast learning experience for you.
I think the point here is I see dog trainers often arguing down to semantics or having an "I do this so I'm better than you" mentality. What people fail to understand is that dogs, people, and goals are all different; hence there is no one training method that is the best for all situations.
If you noticed, this is exactly what this thread is all about and it went well. It differentiated some approaches depending on what discipline one chooses. Different doesn't in anyway mean superior, just different intended to directly address objectives and/or applications that may not be applicable to others.
My head hurts when I see someone put it down to having 'psychic' training abilities or that *their* dog obeys them because they love them.
I don't know psychic training to even apply it. Is there such a thing? I just know that we are dealing with a creature with a form of intelligence man can relate to, with natural abilities indispensable to man. Hence, even the ancients utilized these creatures --- 24/7, 365 days, storm or shine (quite long hours, isnt it?) --- without probably the knowledge of drives but with only the need and desire to work these dogs for mans existence. You got to love these creatures as the ancients did. With their outstanding service to humanity even in times of great need, I SUPPOSE THEY LOVE US TOO, rather unconditionally. Dont you think?
Again, different methods for different situations for different trainers for different dogs. As an example, I've always liked the 'problem solving ability' that clicker-trained dogs are supposed to gain, in other words they start 'throwing behaviours' at you in order to see what it is you want them to do. I do a similar type of training with puppies just for practice, however, I'd be damned if I start carrying a clicker around in the field or 'shaping behaviours'. I just don't have the patience for that. As another example, I can get away with correcting my current shepherd and in fact corrections make him 'faster' and more efficient--my other dog? No way in hell. She would shut down if I do anything apart from tell her "No".
The fact that you can even reach a certain point in training a dog, i.e. I can tell him to go there, sit there, wait there, come here, look for that...is amazing by itself already and showcases the bond between dog and man. I can teach a dog with food until he is overweight, but by the end of the day, he will still follow me to the ends of the earth, which is more than, say, a cat would do, even if said cat has also been trained with treats. I can also train the dog by beating him into submission (though obviously not enough to make him run from me every time he sees me), and he will still follow me to the ends of the earth; do that to a cat and you get your face scratched off.
Training by itself is a way to be able to communicate with a dog, so I don't see why the method should matter as long as you GET there. What's important is the dog learns to respect you and listen to you. He probably already loves you. That's not the issue here, of course. :wink:
Thats all true for your training needs, your goals and objectives. For as long as it gets you there, thats fine. It's non-debatable.
To add more, others may be doing early training as foundation for future real serious work. Others may be working their dogs in a way to improve chances of developing a better service dog which as we all know, is the true and original intention for the working breed. Others, like Bob has mentioned, finds it an effective way to weed out undesirables for SAR work (my words). There may be a kind of work with demands that will challenge both man and dog pushing regular bonds way off the limits, a demand our working dogs have been historically known to have done before.