Hooligan Labrador, with a large audience, in a hotel....

Discussion in 'Clicker Training' started by JulieT, Aug 6, 2015.

  1. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    The other point from the panel discussion - which I hadn't otherwise picked up - was the absolute rubbishing of free running daycare. It made me very, very glad that after seeing various free running daycare options around London I had decided never to send Charlie to these.

    There is a real backlash against this form of daycare - with almost universal consensus that dogs suffer emotionally, physically and it does no good whatsoever for their training.

    A lady then spoke up from the floor saying she ran a daycare and had the dogs well managed with "private stations" for each dog and various other techniques (which I didn't recognise) and spoke at length about well run daycares. Kathy Sado said that these types of daycare in the US are now known as "Dog activity programmes" and similar, and the term "daycare" in the US (to mean free running daycare) is now completely discredited as an appropriate place to send your dog.

    I don't use any kind of free running day care for Charlie, and have no direct experience of any of this - just repeating the discussion.
     
  2. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    Wow, this is really interesting, thanks, Julie. Awesome ;)

    I love the stories about training other animals. Butterflies - wow! I must try to catch that show. I've seen a few brief things on vet shows where they've clicker-trained hyenas to stand against a fence to have an injection, or trained an Orang-utan to hang upside-down and present her lady parts to the fence so she could have an inspection during pregnancy, but nothing detailed.

    Awesome.
     
  3. Oberon

    Oberon Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Thanks for taking the time to write this up - very generous of you. Really enjoying reading it all!!

    Re. the daycare. Having experienced a couple of models I agree that the more structured variety is the way to go. Thankfully our current daycare is a very long way toward that end of the spectrum. Our first one wasn't and our experience was that it made Obi anxious and also de-trained self-regulation. We've recovered substantially from that position but I do regret sending him there. At the current daycare he learns all kinds of good skills. Anyway, don't want to turn the discussion to daycare!
     
  4. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Moderator Forum Supporter

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    This is really really fascinating.
    You have always been fab with the advice on the forum Julie but this is all going to add another dimension. And Barbara too of course.
    Hope you have another great day today.
    You will be puggled by the time you get home!
     
  5. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    You can add to that Fiona with a big cat trained to hug a tree while her buddies eat because she was a bit of a bully. An otter trained to stand against a wall as if it were about to be frisked for vet exams or trained to hold a little bouy on its back in the water (otters are quite mouthy apparently) elephant babies taught to play so their mum's can be examined.....the list went on! As for the butterflies.....they only live 6 weeks so talk about time pressure!!!!
     
  6. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

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    I bet there has been so much to take in...Great you've been able to stop by.I expected there to be a lot more pet owners there .....that's probably based on an assumption I've made on me knowing that you and Barbara were going though . Charlie sounds like he has handled it really ,really well,I bet that has made it all the more enjoyable for you. Right my head is spinning a bit with all you've written ....I need to read through again.....I think I'd have got myself in a bit of a tizz with contradictions....but I guess it makes sense to learn the different approaches for when you need to trouble shoot or fine tune....
    Aaaaagh the daycare observations stress me a bit....,not something I didn't know but that's the only option I've got for consistent off lead socialization what to do ,I try to use it responsibly.
    You should be well on your way home to read up,assimilate and put into practice.....
    Hope you enjoyed yourself Barbara? X
     
  7. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Yes, at home with a cup of tea! And huge thanks to Barbara who helped me out with so much this weekend - really so grateful!

    I wouldn't have missed taking Charlie to ClickerExpo for the world (and I wouldn't have gone without him) but it was hard work. I mean, it was hard work anyway, but managing a hooligan dog in a hotel with 75 other dogs around, and almost no chance to get him an off lead run for 3 days (4, really, with travelling), plus I found working in the learning Labs with an audience a bit stressful (still fabulous though)....it was tiring.

    Charlie is a pretty robust dog - he just gets very happy and very excited with masses of people and other dogs around, he doesn't get stressed really. So apart from him being a bit unsettled in the hotel room until he got used to it, and not being keen to be left in his crate this morning (nothing dramatic, he just didn't rush in for his kong as normal), he was fine, I think.

    Clearly though, not all the dogs there enjoyed it. I thought a few looked incredibly bored and dull eyed. Particularly the ones that went to the lectures (I didn't take Charlie to the lectures, he stayed in my hotel room in his travel crate with a kong).

    I've just learned so much though - a lot about Charlie, and a lot about how I should train. It was really, really worth it.

    I'll try to jot some notes down on the other sessions and the recall Lab I did today with Kathy Sado. That was really weird. The other presenters were in the audience, and I could suddenly find someone famous was giving me tips on my clicker training from the sidelines.....
     
  8. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Wow looking forward to hearing about your recall lab!

    I went to a nose work session and one on targeting. I think the targeting one will be really useful and I'll write more about it later once lizzies asleep. The scentw or was fascinating. They trained dogs to find turtle eggs after the BP disaster in the gulf of mexico so they could be relocated before they hatched. The dogs found 29000 eggs in three days!!! Previous efforts by people had only yielded 12000!!!
     
  9. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Dogs are amazing ......the great things about lectures at such events are all the extra,'extraordinary'facts that come out......looking forward to your write ups too Barbara but when you get a chance...I really appreciate its a 'nice to do' not a 'got to do' so thankyou both x
     
  10. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Maybe it was their backgrounds coming from traditional training originally or the fact that they've all struggled with the same challenges we've all seen but I was massively impressed with how sensible all the instructors were. I went to a Ken Ramirez session on what to do when things go wrong and he took great pains to say that he had used aversive techniques and he possibly would in the future but the important thing was to understand the hierarchy of choices, why what you're doing works and be honest about what you're doing. He said as you gain experience and skills in +R you will gradually just get better and better at solving problems with positive reinforcement.
     
  11. Karen

    Karen Moderator

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    Thanks so much both of you for taking the time to write all this up. It sounds fascinating - and quite bewildering! Going to read through your posts again carefully to understand more.
     
  12. Beanwood

    Beanwood Moderator

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    Wow! I am exhausted just reading this thread. Sounds like a fantastic time with lots to think about and digest. Surprised only 3 pet dog owners, thought there might have been a few more.

    Well done Charlie! Sounds like he was very well behaved, with just a glimpse of the hooligan, there again that really is his trademark and not sure he would the same without it :)
     
  13. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    So the recall Learning Lab with Kathy Sdao.....she is really an amazing presenter, and organised the room just so very well - she was hugely considerate of those people that were there with dogs and made it very much easier for us then in some of the other Labs I went to. We (the people with dogs) also got paper handouts of all the exercises with notes from Kathy, which was fabulous as if you are handling a dog you can't make your own notes of course. I can't say how much of a difference this made, in some other labs it was awful - I had a member of staff that was stood on Charlie's mat in one lab! :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:

    Earlier, in cues and cuing, Kay Laurence had said something which I was interested in - visual cues are often so much more powerful to a dog than verbal cues, and we over use verbal cues. Why not have more visual cues?

    Kathy's technique is all about using a visual cue for recall in the form of a hand touch. There is a verbal cue as well, of course (because your dog might not be facing you or be out of sight when you recall him). But the verbal cue is sort of an attention getting cue, and the point is to sort of "back chain" your recall from a hand touch.

    The rest of the information is pretty much a summary of total recall. So it's just single change of introducing a hand target as part of the recall cue. I have used this for Charlie returning a dummy, and it made a big difference, but I hadn't incorporated into his recall more generally - I think I will though. Targetting is such a very strong behaviour for him.

    In terms of Charlie in this Lab, he didn't settle well. The other dogs that are from the pet dog/obedience/agility world have hugely strong station/settle cues. I noticed that the working flatcoat (Barbara and I met his owner in the targetting lecture) didn't do well on this either.

    Charlie clowned around a little - he nipped over and nicked another dog's mat just as the dog was about to sit down, Charlie looked like he was grinning and the other dog looked affronted as though someone had pulled a chair away. The audience thought it was hilarious, and this pushed his "playing to the crowd" button...

    So he didn't settle and spent all the down time trying to chew shoelaces, nick stuff out of bags and so on. I SO have to work on my settle. The flatcoat did no better at settle but minus the Charlie antics, so it wasn't so obvious. :rolleyes:

    On the up side, the much better trained dogs seemed sort of "dutiful" - if that makes any sense. They trotted (sometimes cantered) swiftly to obey their recalls (between two people). While Charlie GALLOPED to obey his recall, skidding to a halt and with a rocking horse "this is the best thing I've ever been asked to do" attitude. Which made the audience laugh again...so he galloped some more. In a small room, with 150 people, other dogs, and a lot of expensive A/V equipment...eeek!

    And something that lots of people would take for granted, but I don't. My dog was off lead in this environment and didn't leg it to entertain himself. Mind, he already had plenty of attention, so....

    So....sigh - that's my Charlie. Some downsides, but a lot of upsides. :):):)

    In terms of my performance - I could not remember to click! At one point Aaron Clayton started whispering "click, click, click" to me! I put it down to me needing to proof my training skills with distractions! :D:D:D
     
  14. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    I've used a hand target to improve delivery and I also use it intermittently on Obi's recall but between your write up and the targeting presentation I think targeting is about to play a stronger role in my training!!!
     
  15. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Yup, me too. A few light bulb moments in this for me....
     
  16. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    The targeting session was really interesting and possibly held the most obvious practical application in Gundog training where my focus lies.
    It was important to have different physical targets for different behaviours....
    You can have static targets, touch and go, fast and slow targets. You can have a nose target, paw or any other part of the dogs body! (We saw a dog that had been taught to pretend pee with a target for heelwork to music!)
    The most useful thing though was that this was the first time anyone had given me a real view of how you might fade a target. For some things, like the touch point on an agility A frame, you transfer the target and the A frame becomes the target in its own right. On others you look for repetitions on the target and then you add a cue(at this point you have two cues - the target is a visual cue and your new verbal cue) then the target is removed and you look for the same behaviour in the the same spot with your verbal cue, any delay and you might add your target back in.
    The presenter also talked about using a paw target for a "send away" which is equivalent to a dogs outrun. The key was that you were establishing three behaviours: A straight line of travel, pace and a forward looking dog. Once you have this you stop clicking as the paw touches the target and you click before it for the behaviours you want. At that point the dog returns for the reinforcement and the target has become superfluous. I have to say none of the dogs on the videos had anything like the pace of either of my dogs retrieving but I'm interested to see if it might help my straight lines so may be heading to the football field with a paw target :D
     
  17. Oberon

    Oberon Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Everything I train has a hand (visual) cue. Probably because I come from an obedience background where at the higher levels the exercises are all visual cues only (no 'sound' cues allowed). Must admit I took it for granted that everyone trained this way and this is the first time it has occurred it me that people might not! Interesting.

    In my world if a dog doesn't gallop to you on a formal recall cue then they are nervous about it. So be proud of having a galloping dog :)
     
  18. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    I need to do a LOT of thinking about the Premack session. Premack says high probability behaviour reinforces low probability behaviour. I can see how that works with the opportunity to hunt being available in return for sitting to flush but I need to think more about how you get from where we are now to the finished article using Premack. I can totally see that being extensively in use in traditional Gundog training without putting a name on it :)
     
  19. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    I've always had a visual cue for recall. Adding a hand touch seems to be a bit more than that though as it gives the dog somewhere specific to be and something to do as part of a behaviour chain. It helped with Obi's run around tendencies where he would be on his way back and duck out at the last moment and it also helped Rileys delivery so I just did a hand touch for Obi's delivery straight away.
     
  20. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Yes, I have visual cues for practically everything. Not on stop, and not on recall. I don't on stop because I can't distinguish a stop from my back, left and right directions effectively. So....adding a specific target to the recall would change something for me.
     

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