I tried it and it didn’t work… How many times have I heard it from caregivers when I asked if they used the X, Y, Z method. This applies to all BATs, CATs as well as methods for learning retrieve, heelwork or recall. Why are known and established methods not working?
When method XYZ didn’t work
I learned to ask about one more thing when handlers told me that method XYZ didn’t work, that he tried them all, but they were all ineffective. I specifically ask: how exactly did the training look like. Very often it turns out that the handler:
- he used the method but skipped step one because his dog already “knows” how to do it
- he used the method but without step three, because it is not what his dog needs right now
- he used the method, but he has gone through the various stages faster because his dog is very smart and does not need so many repetitions
- he used the method, but needed to make some minor changes, because he thought it would be better fro his dog
- he used a method, but he doesn’t know what it looks like exactly. Because he only read the summary of its use on the internet
MODIFICATIONS! It is the nail in the coffin of the effectiveness of most methods and technologies of work. We can compare them to a man on a diet who stuck to his menu all day, so in the evening he can afford chocolate or a cookie. Is a running adept who will give up the warm-up because he has been doing it recently and did not see the difference in the effects of training.
Errors in applying and conducting training
Of course, there is no method or technology of work that works for every dog in every situation, but very often the ineffectiveness is not caused by the “uniqueness of the dog or its handler”, but by errors in applying and conducting training.
Therefore, before we introduce something from ourselves to a given method, we must really have a lot of knowledge about working with dogs, about the laws governing the learning processes. We also need to be advanced practitioners with great skills. Let’s not change the procedures, let’s not skip the stages, because it seems to us that our dog or we do not need it.
We may not realize but often the success of training plans lies in nuances we may not recognize. They have not been added by chance. They are there on purpose, often an effect of years of practice and research done by scientists, very skillful trainers in the field.Tags: animal training, dog, dog training, dogs, dogtraining, science of learning
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