Category Archives: Learning Theory

Blogs about the science of dog training

An Open Letter to Pet Industry Representatives Regarding the Use of Shock in Animal Training, Management and Care: We now know enough to stop shocking our pets

Shocking pet dogs remains a common, if controversial, training practice worldwide. In this open letter, Pet Professional Guild (PPG) combines decades of research, the opinions of certified animal behaviorists, and the question of ethics to explain why using electric shock … Continue reading

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

Clicker Training for Cats (1/6)

By Paula Garber and Francine Miller Why train a cat? Why indeed. Myths about the trainability of cats abound: “Cats can’t be trained because they’re too independent.” “Cats are difficult to train because they are not food motivated.” “Cats don’t … Continue reading

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

Why do food rewards win, but not for separation anxiety?

By Julie Naismith Rewards-based training is the best. Dogs love it because it’s fun and it doesn’t involve fear or pain. And best of all, it works. In fact, research shows that it works better than any other method.  Hands … Continue reading

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

An Open Letter to County Commissioners re: Consumer Transparency – the Methods Used in Animal Training, Care and Management Will Protect Pets, Their Owners, Local Residents and the Public at Large

Introduction: The Importance of Transparency between Clients and Service Providers Frieden (2013) states that: “Free and open information empowers people to make informed choices and reduces the likelihood that misinformation or hidden information will endanger health.” It is not unusual and, … Continue reading

Posted in Advocacy, Animal Behavior, Consulting, Learning Theory, Pet Care, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

An Open Letter To Pet Owners About The Pet Professional Guild’s Shock-Free Coalition

According to the American Pet Products Association (2017), 68 percent of Americans return home to a pet (or pets) each day.  An estimated 48 percent of US residents are dog owners while 38 percent share their home with a cat … Continue reading

Posted in Advocacy, Animal Behavior, Consulting, Learning Theory, Pet Care, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just Say No to Saying “NO!”

It’s almost a reflex. There goes Rover, in hot pursuit of the cat, or gnawing on the sofa, or slurping at your dinner plate, or barking threats at squirrels…and we just need it to STOP, so we shout “NO!” Then … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Learning Theory, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Ping Pong Recalls

When I ask new puppy owners ‘what are the most important objectives for you and your new pup?’ you can bet that right at the very top of that list is ‘I want to be able to let my dog … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Learning Theory, Pet Care, PPG News, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Using Annoying or Scary Sounds for Dog Training

Let’s pretend you saw an ad for a new dog training product. It read something like this: Introducing the Noise-Aided Obedience Device (NOD)! Never have trouble with your dog again. When you jerk or flap the lead attached to your … Continue reading

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

Front Door Freakout

If you come to my house, brace yourself. You walk up the stairs, ring the doorbell. Suddenly…the shrieking of a hundred banshees? Maybe an exorcism in progress? Or fiery-eyed, froth-mawed Cerberus guarding the gates of Hades? Nope. It’s my people-loving … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Behavior, Learning Theory, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

“Naughty” Dog Or Normal Dog?

I’ve lost count as to how many times I’ve heard that Fido is ‘really naughty,’ ‘he’s doing it deliberately,’ ‘he’s trying to spite me,’ or, if an owner has more than one dog, ‘they’re trying to gang up on me!’ … Continue reading

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