Positive Reinforcement training and why it’s the best way to train!
Reward-based training enables puppies and dogs to succeed and to therefore be rewarded for performing ‘good’ behaviours. This is otherwise known as ‘positive reinforcement’.
All animals learn quickly and retain more of what they have learnt if they are not fearful. Reward-based, positive learning is not only very effective but also a lot kinder. Not only are training sessions enjoyable for the dog, but reward-based training actually encourages them to learn and to repeat what they have learnt.
Positive, kind training also enables the dog and the owner to build up a relationship of trust and to form a lifelong bond.
A reward can be anything the dog/puppy most wants, but the easiest and most obvious is food! There are however, some objections to the use of food as rewards in training. For example, some feel it is bribery and that the dog will never learn to work for their approval. In reality, food used as a reward is incorporated to teach our dogs what we want them to doand, later, once the action is well learned,we can start to reduce amount of food rewards givento a manageable level.
Reward-based training does not involve physical punishment and we do not assert dominance over the dog. We strongly believe that typical ‘Alpha’ roles and ‘Pack-Leader’ type labels are unnecessary and out-dated.
We do not employ Positive Punishment. “Well this is controversial?” I hear you say– “Surely Positive Punishment” is OK? Just because it has the word ‘Positive’ in it does not make the use of the technique OK. Positive punishment can be an aversive technique used to instil anxiety or fear in the dog to make it behave (The Positive Punishment gadgets include those that squirt a disagreeable spray at the dog when they bark, shock collars, choke chains or prong collars, that press sharp points into the dog’s neck , if they pull on the lead).
Contrary to popular belief, we can use reward-based training and positive reinforcement to deal with behavioural problems too and we certainly don’t have to use force or intimidation.
In short, reward-based training is a very kind yet effective way of training dogs and puppies and addressing behavioural problems too – all of this whilst bonding and building up a fantastic relationship with your dog!