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Can chows be non-reactive? (Read 8385 times)
Ef_Deal
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Re: Can chows be non-reactive?
Reply #15 - Aug 12th, 2010 at 2:51pm
 
I did find a website when I researched it after Merlin mentioned it, at http://leerburg.com/markers.htm. ; To give you an example, in this first week I have to teach Moonlight a marker word.  I chose "Yes."  So I spend a minute or two a few times a day saying "Yes" and giving her a treat so she associates the marker with a reward.  Then I have to use the marker to get her to look into my eyes when I call her name.

The problem I'm discovering after a full day of this is that she gets too bored with treats to stay with me, even if I switch up the treats.  She walks away and goes to one of her sleep cubbies.  This is going to be tough!
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Sirchow
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Re: Can chows be non-reactive?
Reply #16 - Aug 12th, 2010 at 4:24pm
 
Thank you Ef.  I think that I kind of get the idea - there is a lot of reading on that site on the subject but it seems like there is still a lot of food/treat rewards being offered.  Basically on that site they are saying the marker is used till the reward can be given a few seconds later.  I thought what Merlin was saying was to get away from giving food or treats as a motivation.  I am still quite confused.  Undecided

This wouldn't work for Bramble as she will not accept food or treats from your hand and certainly not outside the house.  I can see how I can start to train my food monster Izzie to pay more attention to me though.
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Ef_Deal
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Re: Can chows be non-reactive?
Reply #17 - Aug 12th, 2010 at 6:05pm
 
As I understand it (and I have only been to the orientation class where our homework is to teach the dog the marker and to teach the dog to pay attention) the food is only to reinforce the marker. Praise is also given right after the marker. Once the behavior is shaped, praise or toys and play replace the treat.  Our handout on teaching the dog to pay attention states: "Repeat this step frequently so the dog becomes comfortable with looking up at your face even when no food is visible. Begin varying your reward.  Instead of always using food as a reward, praise, pet in a pleasing way, toss a toy, start a game." 

My challenge is finding a variety of treats to keep Moonlight interested in learning.  Our first session on learning the marker word was great.  The second session, she walked away after two treats.  I switched to cheese, which she loves.  That worked for the third session last night.  This morning, she couldn't be bothered with cheese.  I tried a slice of roast beef, and that worked really well.  So I took a second slice out, and she walked away, and I couldn't lure her back.

I'm thinking that I might head back to the trainer tomorrow to see if I'm doing everything right. I don't want to make any mistakes on this because it's too important.
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