Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

Discussion in 'Labradors in Service' started by editor, Jun 1, 2014.

  1. editor

    editor Administrator

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    Interesting article from The Bark about the effects of changing from traditional to modern training methods, on the Guide Dogs' graduation rate.
     
  2. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Re: Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

    I liked that. The results are impressive, but I also liked that they covered the impact on the blind person - a more empowering experience for the handler.
     
  3. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Re: Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

    That is very interesting......
    Using traditional methods, roughly 45 to 50 percent of the dogs entering the formal training process made guide dog status. With the incorporation of clicker training (one type of positive reinforcement), 60 to 85 percent graduate and are successfully paired with a blind partner.
    :)
     
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  4. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Re: Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

    I liked the site. Fishing around after finishing the article on guide dogs, I read this:

    http://thebark.com/content/qa-denise-fenzi

    I was interested in this too, as I think what's important (aside from results from just the absence of punishment) about positive training is the impact on the relationship with your dog.

    I'm trying to order her book (I can't seem to get it as an ebook in the UK though).
     
  5. Lisa

    Lisa Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Re: Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

    Both articles are very interesting, thanks for them , Pippa and Julie!
     
  6. Oberon

    Oberon Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Re: Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

    [quote author=JulieT link=topic=6354.msg84255#msg84255 date=1401661149]
    I think what's important (aside from results from just the absence of punishment) about positive training is the impact on the relationship with your dog.
    [/quote]

    Precisely.
     
  7. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Re: Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

    I think the relationship side is so important. That's one of my main reasons for not wanting to use a rattle bottle with Riley, I don't want to train my dog that way. I feel like it's a betrayal of his trust in me (that sounds a bit melodramatic - sorry!) it makes me unhappy which translates to Riley and we're both miserable. Even a couple of sessions of clicker training has already made a positive impact.
     
  8. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Re: Guide Dogs for the Blind USA - effects of switching to positive reinforcement

    [quote author=bbrown link=topic=6354.msg85012#msg85012 date=1401867701]
    I think the relationship side is so important. That's one of my main reasons for not wanting to use a rattle bottle with Riley, I don't want to train my dog that way. I feel like it's a betrayal of his trust in me (that sounds a bit melodramatic - sorry!) it makes me unhappy which translates to Riley and we're both miserable. Even a couple of sessions of clicker training has already made a positive impact.
    [/quote]

    Couldn't agree more, and do not think your point is melodramatic at all.

    I have actually bought the physical book (as couldn't get it in electronic form).
     
  9. AngelConradie

    AngelConradie Registered Users

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    This is great to read!
    SA Guide-Dogs has spent the last couple of years switching to a positive and clicker-based training programme, training their trainers, Puppy Raising Supervisors, and kennel staff, and then gradually training the "repeat" Puppy Raisers and the new ones coming in. :)
     
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