Author Archives: Eileen Anderson

eileenbanderson@sbcglobal.net'

About Eileen Anderson

About eileenanddogs: Passionate amateur dog trainer, writer, and learning theory geek. See more at http://eileenanddogs.com.

Local Enhancement and Socially Facilitated Behaviors in Dogs

This post started out as one thing and transformed into another as I went along, as many of mine do. I have been familiar for a while with the term local enhancement for a type of social learning in dogs. … Continue reading

Posted in Learning Theory, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Leave It: Not Just for Dead Men Anymore

The other day I was pondering the trend of talking about teaching “self-control” and “impulse control” in our dogs. I got to thinking about “leave it,” both the term and the behavior. I realized a couple things. First, the term “leave it” … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Learning Theory, Pet Care, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

If You’re Loving It, Why Leave?

Is “choice” a code word for negative reinforcement? It can be. Seems like that’s the context where I see it pop up the most. I’ve written a lot about choice. Two of my major points are: Many people are confused … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Learning Theory, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Latent Learning: The Original Definition

Latent learning has a precise definition in learning theory and it’s not what many people think. It’s not magic learning that happens during downtime–at least not in the way people assume. It is not a sudden better performance after a … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Natural vs. Contrived Negative Reinforcement

I read the following online the other day: People shouldn’t object to the use of negative reinforcement! It’s just stuff like washing my hands when they are dirty or drying them when they are wet. What’s wrong with that? This is … Continue reading

Posted in Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

It Was Coming Right At Me!

I am so interested in how dogs perceive things, and how they notice differences that we don’t, or that we take for granted. Those differences can matter to them a great deal. An example of that was the focus of my … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Good Sit!”

Here is a quiz. Let’s say someone says, “Sit,” to a dog, intending the word as a cue. What part of speech is the word, “Sit”? Then, what part of speech is the same word if we say, “Good sit!” afterwards? That was … Continue reading

Posted in Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

But Every Dog is Different!

But every dog is different! This is another common argument against trainers who train without force. It usually goes like this: But every dog is different! You can’t just use a cookie cutter! But every dog is different! Why limit … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Does Your Dog REALLY Want to be Petted?

Newsflash. Not all dogs want to be petted. But you wouldn’t know it from watching videos on YouTube. What you can learn on YouTube is that there are lots of dogs whose owners _think_ they are enjoying petting. But they … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Pet Care | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are You Really Performing Classical Counterconditioning?

What do the following training descriptions have in common? “My dog’s afraid of strangers. But when she stops barking and makes eye contact with me, I give her a treat.” “I hold her foot. Then I give her a treat … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment