Welcome to Aunt Karen’s Lucky Dogs!
You have taken your first step in learning more about Dog Training! Dog Training is as old as humans have had domesticated animals yet as new as 21st century science!
Karen Comstock, MA, CBCC, CPDT-KA uses Reward Based training which relies on praise and rewards such as treats, toys and games to reinforce behaviors that you want while eliminating unwanted behaviors. A dog who is rewarded and praised during training will associate positive emotions with training and will enjoy learning. Reward Based or Positive Reinforcement training strengthens the emotional bond with the handler and stimulates a dog’s natural desire to learn.
No Choke, No Shock, No Shame! Aunt Karen’s training method is not based on force or compulsion. Training based on physical punishment is not recommended due to the damaging emotional effects and potentially dangerous side-effects of creating repressed behavior, anxiety and fear in dogs.
Behavioral science and psychology shows that when a stimulus produces an event, that event triggers an emotion. In this regard, dogs are just like people. Through the principles of Classical Conditioning, a dog who is punished during training will learn, by association, that training means unpleasantness, discomfort and the possibility of pain. Signs of training such as seeing the trainer, the collar or the leash will trigger the negative emotions associated with punishment such as fear and anxiety. How your dog may react to those negative emotions will be unpredictable and your dog’s natural enthusiasm for learning may become repressed along with other normal behaviors.
Humane Dog trainers use Classical Conditioning to create rewarding associations and positive emotional responses and Operant Conditioning to shape desirable behavior by leveraging the consequences of simple behaviors. Creating positive emotions and rewarding consequences will produce predictable behavior results and give your dog opportunities to be cooperative participants in the training process.
Bottom line? Harsh corrections will teach your dog to fear you and may create additional unwanted behaviors. So please be kind. Reward your dog generously and get a lifetime of loyalty — the loving bond that you want!
Aunt Karen’s Lucky Dogs specializes in rehabilitation of mistreated dogs who are lucky enough to get a second chance. Please support your local animal shelter and rescue organizations.