a crazy doer of a dog....

Discussion in 'Clicker Training' started by JulieT, Nov 1, 2015.

  1. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    I have always struggled to stop Charlie “doing stuff”. There are positives to this, and negatives to this.

    The positives to this are that because I shape a lot of stuff, Charlie has a “wadda ya want? wadda ya want?” attitude, which is really handy. I recently worked with a dog that hadn’t done a lot of clicker training and it was SUCH hard work! The dog didn’t offer behaviours, and I found it so slow compared to Charlie who will just keep trying until he starts getting paid. When I put my new ally opps target stick on the floor for example, all I had to do was tap it once and Charlie immediately jumped up to interact with it as a new nose target.

    [As an aside though, at Clickerexpo I found that the trainers shape A LOT less than I do – and free shaping was not something that was popular – I’ll write that up later].

    The downsides are that it is difficult to get Charlie to wait for a cue. So if he thinks he has discovered what pays he’ll repeat it time and time again.

    I saw a good technique a clicker expo for this.

    Whenever I want to try stuff out these days, I use my pot/glove/cloth game. This was a seemingly useless trick I trained when Charlie was on rest only it’s far from useless - it’s turned into a set of behaviours that don’t matter to me at all so I can mess around with these and experiment so I can learn stuff.

    Normally, if I put the pot down, Charlie will repeatedly go to the pot. He won’t wait for the cue, he’ll just rush to whack the pot with his paw hoping to be paid for that.

    So what I want is for Charlie to only hit the pot with his paw after the cue. I have tried not paying him if I don’t give the cue, but this doesn’t really work. Because he is (as I learned at ClickerExpo) “a crazy doer” and he’ll try for a long, long time without any payment.

    So what I started doing was clicking both touch the pot AND don’t touch the pot. Charlie was confused at first, and I had to add a hand signal to go to the pot to help him out, but he soon got it.
     
  2. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    Oh I should say - to avoid risking confusion - he will reliably hit the pot on cue, but the behaviour is not under stimulus control in that he would also perform the behaviour without the cue.
     
  3. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2014
    Messages:
    11,054
    Location:
    Andorra and Spain
    Could you share a video of this, Julie? I don't really get what you're saying :/

    Shadow's a bit of a crazy "whaddya want? Is it this? No? This? No? This??" kinda dog, which I have to admit makes me laugh my socks off, but can be pretty frustrating when trying to shape something specific. He is pretty good, however, at learning to wait for the cue once we've established a behaviour and he's had a few non-clicks for doing it without the cue.
     
  4. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2013
    Messages:
    11,038
    Location:
    Dubai
    ....Dexter is 'on' as soon as I pick up the treat bag or clicker ,if someone distracts me between that point and starting to do something with him....he will start going through his repetoire .....his favorite default is a lie down....he tries that a lot if he doesn't know what I want! He's pretty handy with his 'high five ' too ! When I think about it I lure more than I use shaping .....shaping can lead to us having a bit of a staring match at times....
     
  5. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    Well....I'm not sure this isn't too complicated (I don't mean complex training - this is obviously really basic stuff, I mean given where I was), but it's what I tried.....

    [vid]

    [​IMG]GOPR0783 by julieandcharlie julieandcharlie, on Flickr

    So I had a mat out - you do need a default - to prompt what the dog needs to do when he doesn't get a cue. I'd click for the default AND the behaviour. I'd only click the behaviour after the cue, but I'd always click the default (which is don't do the behaviour or in Charlie's case default to the mat).

    I am going to stop free shaping stuff though, which is what has generated the problem - the trainers at ClickerExpo do not do this. They lure until they have the behaviour very close to what they want before they click.

    The exact example I saw at ClickerExpo was a paw wave - click for a paw wave (the cue was holding up a stick) and click for no wave when the stick wasn't there. It was from Kay Laurence's "cues and cuing".

    This is why me paying for steadiness works, rewarding steadiness by a retrieve in Charlie's case is hopeless. I have never, ever got that to work. The only thing that worked was calming Charlie down sufficiently so I could pay for a default - don't go get the dummy.

    I will go through the notes from Kay - both "brush up your basics" and "cues and cuing" I found really helpful. She pointed out that many dogs have a different default than the one people think they have....
     
  6. Boogie

    Boogie Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2014
    Messages:
    5,290
    He's so very beautiful I had to watch it a few times before looking at his behaviour instead of his gorgeous face!

    Tatze is so much the opposite - she is a pottering 'can't really be bothered, but I'll do it for you' kind of girl! It's a good thing she's not a working dog :)

    Charlie is much more like a Springer than a Lab! My niece's Bryn is very much 'what now? what now?' :)
     
  7. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    Ah, that's so nice of you. I do love him. :)

    He is very calm here - partly because it's in a kitchen where he is used to being focused, but also because he is a little unsure getting clicks for two different behaviours.

    He was a nightmare in failing to settle at ClickeExpo though. It was v embarrassing. Was just about to post on that....got to do something about it.
     
  8. Boogie

    Boogie Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2014
    Messages:
    5,290
    What was his biggest distraction?
     
  9. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    Well....it went like this:

    I have trained a settle cue, and Charlie has a strong mat behaviour (I use a folded towel when I'm out and about which I cover his mats with when I'm training). I also have a "standing park" cue.

    He did pretty well on his "standing park" - in that he was calm, interested in the other dogs around of course, but he was stood relatively quietly, looking around, gently wagging his tail.

    His mat settle cue turned out to be very, very weak. He would go on his mat (towel) and as usual jumped on it as soon as I put it down, and initially settled, but it lasted only part way through the first session and barely held up at all over the rest of the 3 days.

    So while the other dogs were sparko on their mats, Charlie was trying to get up, chew the shoelaces of the lady sitting next to me, crawl under my chair to stick his nose in a handbag, try to catch the eyes of other dogs with flirty "wanna play?" looks and so on.

    I've been thinking about what could be the difference between the standing park and the mat settle. His mat settle works in pubs, cafes, and so on and I've used it a lot. His standing park has been used a lot at dog training and also a lot in the street.

    If anything, I think his mat settle cue has been used more in a similar environment to Clickerexpo than his park cue, so I don't know.

    But, since I'll be switching my focus a bit away from gundog stuff (I want Charlie to have a very balanced exercise regime), I really would like to have a strong mat station/settle cue that will work inside around other dogs.

    I haven't had as much trouble inside at dog training classes.

    Having written this, I now wonder if the difference was that when I've trained his mat settle there hasn't really been anything close enough for him to "get to"...and the difference was people, bags, shoes and so in within reach....and when it worked at Clickerexpo, he was at the back of the room with just myself and Barbara, and when it failed he was towards the front of the room in a row of people and chairs....
     
  10. Boogie

    Boogie Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2014
    Messages:
    5,290
    Yes - that very much sounds like it. Teaching them to settle and even snooze with all sorts of clutter around is quite different from a nice, clear area.

    So, if you need him do do that again, where could you practice it?

    Twiglet will need to do exactly that a lot, but of course, we have been doing it almost daily since she arrived.
     
  11. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    I'm just sort of making a plan....do you use food or do you just end the settle with movement/food?
     
  12. Boogie

    Boogie Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2014
    Messages:
    5,290

    We start by using treats but slowly fade them out as they get used to settling. The cue is me putting my bum on a chair :)

    I take a blanket or mat in case the floor is cold, wood is fine but tiles are not. We are expected to never, ever have our dogs uncomfortable - which I wouldn't anyway, of course. I always give Twiglet a chew when we are going to be a long time and she's not tired. This can be a bit embarrassing in theatres/churches lol, she's not quiet when she chews - so I have a treat ready to swap it for if all goes quiet!
     
  13. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    mmmm.....if Charlie gets food I just get a "fake settle" - he is alert, waiting for food. He is fine if he has a kong, but that doesn't transfer.

    He sounds like a slobbering, munching beast when he has a kong! :D:D:D
     
  14. Boogie

    Boogie Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2014
    Messages:
    5,290
    Hmmm, yes - Zaba is like that. Food = possible more food!

    Is there anything he likes to chew which isn't food?
     
  15. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2011
    Messages:
    11,167
    Charlie settled well in the pub ;)

    I don't think I've got a settle exactly but both my dogs will wait while I talk to someone without a dog. I want to turn that into a consistent chill out regardless of distractions though and make sure that all still holds true if I'm sitting.

    Riley and Obi both default on sit and I do get that if I with old rewards. I'm still cogitation over clickerexpo and what to do with the info!!! :D
     
  16. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    Not really, toys would make him even more alert.

    I think I'm just in it for the long haul here - I'll just have to wait in ever increasingly complex environments, end the settle then reward. It's just going to take a while.

    ClickerExpo was just a huge leap from a chair and a relatively clear space (absolutely nothing for him to do) to lots of people, shoes and bags within chewing reach. I think, anyway. It sounds likely doesn't it?

    I'll have to move items close to his settle area, I suppose. How I'll stop him playing with them though....I guess they'll just have to be very boring at first. I struggle to think of anything Charlie will find boring!
     
  17. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    Charlie does settle in the pub, and cafes etc - although, I'm probably not consistent enough in that he'll settle but then come for a pat and a bit of attention (which he gets), then settle again. It's not that absolutely dead on the mat that others at Expo seemed to have....
     
  18. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    For those who are interested, this is how I have trained Charlie's (very weak!) settle cue - the cue is the towel and my foot on the lead. His standing park is just my foot on the lead.

    I have made the mistake of doing this in all sorts of places, but never with items or people close to Charlie. I know he'll play with anything within reach. So I now need to put my thinking cap on to work out how to get him to do this surrounded by things he could play with, other dogs and people!

    [vid - with several minutes cut out of the middle! As it's already like watching paint dry....].

    [​IMG]settle cue by julieandcharlie julieandcharlie, on Flickr
     
  19. FoxyLady

    FoxyLady Registered Users

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2014
    Messages:
    117
    Location:
    East Devon
    going back to the stimulus control another way to improve it is to cue different behaviours in a sequence - so cue spin, then a hit the pot, then a down, then a sit, then a hit the pot, - which is a bit like what you were doing with the mat in between as a default. It might be easier for Charlie to do different behaviours on cue than not do a behaviour until cued.

    But I guess you really need a default behaviour so if you say a rubbish cue or no cue then he for example just stands still in front of you. The do nothing without a cue is hard for them if you do free shaping - I'm trying to use a cue to indicate a free shaping session (I say at the start "what do you think" to mean its OK to try things out now)

    I'm interested into why free shaping was not encouraged now at the Clicker Expo - is it because of the above problem or ...?
     
  20. JulieT

    JulieT Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    22,637
    Partly, but mainly it's because "nothing can be unlearned". So by shaping something you reward a lot of "approximations" along the way....and maybe it goes slower than you think or you don't even get there. And these "approximations" are learned and you get resurgence - where something previous learned or rewarded "pops up" and interferes with your finished behaviours.

    At least, that's how I understood it.

    As far as I could tell free shaping is used only when something can't be lured or otherwise obtained by using targets say, or otherwise arranging the environment to make the behaviour you want more likely, which is much preferable. So you start clicking the behaviour you want as soon as possible. And then you only reward what you actually want, not steps along the way.
     

Share This Page