There have been major advances in the past 20 years for dog training. Unfortunately, punishment for unwanted behavior had become the norm and their wolf ancestry has been the blame for bad behavior. Dogs are often labeled as "too stubborn" to train. However, with positive reinforcement techniques, we set our dogs up to succeed and give them rewards for good choices. This helps a stubborn dog become more eager to learn and more motivated to build great relationships.
Positive reinforcement started in the 1930's with B.F. Skinner's scientific studies of Operant Conditioning. Hollywood animal trainers use this method of training because the animals become happy, dependable performers. The wildest undomesticated animals can learn and trust you when using positive reinforcement training. Instead of jerking and forcing an animal with a choke chain hoping the dog will eventually understand, you can shape and reward your dog to the appropriate wanted behaviors.
What positive reinforcement means is that the dog works to get the things he likes. The key to positive reinforcement is timing. To increase the likelihood that the dog will repeat a behavior is to reward the dog at the moment the dog performs the desirable behavior. Positive reinforcements have been scientifically proven to gain favorable results. We are more likely to perform better in our work when we expect a paycheck, a raise, a bonus, and/or a promotion. Just like us, dogs need motivation and reinforcement as well.
An example of positive reinforcement is giving your dog a treat the moment he sits.
Examples of positive reinforcers are:
By implementing positive reinforcement today, your dog will be on his way to becoming the well behaved dog you desire.
I am an ABC Certified Dog Trainer and owner of Furry Tail Dog Training.
Books I've read: