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Tracey’s Training Tips

GSROR is delighted to welcome to our team, Tracey. She volunteers her time helping with any behavior issues and basic obedience/training questions for the dogs in the rescue. We have a special section in our newsletters and on our website dedicated to Tracey’s Training Tips. In these articles, Tracey will share her knowledge of dog training, dog behavior, canine body language and life in general with a dog. Her articles will provide some interesting information, suggestions, and tips in the hopes of helping new and seasoned owners continue to establish a lifelong bond with their canine family member.

September 2011 – Common Dog Training Terms
(Or Speaking the Lingo of Other Dog Enthusiasts)
Part 1 of 3

In future editions of “Tracey’s Training Tips (TTT),” occasions will arise where I will be using some dog training lingo. So, instead of having to define each and every word or concept as I mention them in a “TTT” article, I thought it would be helpful to share with everyone some of the common dog training terms that you might encounter. This is by no means a comprehensive list of all training terms. I have tried to describe them without using too many other training terms, and I have taken the liberty of choosing ones I, personally, commonly use. The definition of these terms can also be found in a number of resources, both online sites and in books, if you would like to study them further.

Classical Conditioning: (Also called Pavlovian Conditioning) A type of learning process where one stimulus (i.e. a bell) is paired with another stimulus (i.e. food) which causes an involuntary response (i.e. salivation.)

Operant Conditioning: A type of learning process where behavior in the dog is determined by the consequences it generates. For example, if a dog sits and then gets a treat, the dog will be more likely to sit on command or if a dog pulls on the leash and the owner stops walking, the dog will be less likely to pull on the leash.

Counter Conditioning: A learning process where the dog is trained to behave differently to or think differently about a stimulus that he has had a reaction to in the past. This can be seen when a trainer teaches a dog who has been fearful of humans, that humans are okay.

Marker: Anything, such as a word, a clicker or a sound, which is used to let the dog know that he has done the correct thing the instant he does it.

Clicker Training: A very popular training system that uses operant conditioning techniques that focus on reinforcing desired behaviors with the use of a marker (in this case a clicker) and something the dog wants (oftentimes, treats.)

Remember to have fun with it! Dogs love learning new things!


Content Copyrighted 2011. Tracey Derheim. All Rights Reserved.