Dogs are one of the greatest animal friend that human beings have. However we should not forget that they are still animals and possess some behaviors that are not to our liking. Mainly this is the key reason behind training your dog.
The aim of dog training is to modify the behavior of your dog, which can either be for it to assist in specific activities or undertake particular tasks or for it to participate effectively in contemporary domestic life. This is done through the use of the environmental events of antecedents and consequences
To become a dog trainer you have to understand how dogs learns and the various methods of animals training.
A dog learns from every interaction it has with its surroundings. This can be through
- Operant conditioning — in this method the dog’s behavior is modified by its consequences. A dog’s behavior can be strengthened by Positive Reinforcement that occurs when a behavior is strengthened by producing some desirable consequence or by negative reinforcement occurs where a behavior is strengthened by avoiding some undesirable consequence.
- Classical conditioning — in this method a dog forms an association between two stimuli. The dog learns to associate things in its environment, or discovers some things that occur together. This method is used when helping a dog to overcome some of its challenges like fear of something or people.
- Non-associative learning — this is a method used to modify the dog’s behavior through habituation. On-associative learning is a change in a response to a stimulus that does not involve associating the presented stimulus with another stimulus or event such as reward or punishment.
- Social learning — this occurs through observing the behavior of others. This form of learning requires a model instead of reinforcement. This mostly applies to the domestic dogs which tend to learn from the people that live around it at home.
Above having knowledge of how animals specifically dogs learn, to become a good dog trainer it is expedient to know the methods used in training dogs. There are a variety of established methods of animals training which include:
- Koehler method — it is based on Koehler explanation that a dog’s learned behavior is an act of choice based on its own learning experience. In such that when those choices are influenced by the expectation of reward, the behavior will most likely be repeated, and when those choices are influenced by the anticipation of punishment, they will most likely cease. Once the dog has learned that its choices result in comfort or discomfort it can be taught to make the correct decisions. The dog acts, remembers the consequences, and forms the desire to repeat or avoid those consequences.
- Motivational training —this employs the use of rewards to reinforce good behavior while ignoring all bad behavior. The dog’s boss appreciates the good behaviors of the dog by may be giving something or treating it in a special way but ignores those behaviors that he/she doesn’t like in the dog.
- Clicker training —the system uses conditioned reinforces which are able to be delivered more quickly and more precisely than primary rein forcers such as food. The basis of effective clicker training is precise timing to deliver the conditioned reinforcer at the same moment as the desired behavior is offered.
- Electronic training — in this way of training electric shock is used as an aversive. Common forms are collars which can be triggered remotely, or that are triggered by barking, fencing that delivers a shock when a dog wearing a special collar crosses a buried wire, and mats that can be placed on furniture to deliver a shock.