Common Training Definitions

Common Training Definitions

Stimulus: Something that rouses or incites to action or increased action. For reactive dogs something causes them to lose focus on their owner.

Threshold: the distance that your dog can approach a stimulus without being over stimulated.

Reactivity: A dog's reaction to stimuli is usually a bark, growl and lunge type of behaviour that is intended to scare the stimulus away.

Conditioning: Classical conditioning refers to learning by association, and involves the conditioning of innate bodily reflexes with new stimuli. Any feature of the environment that affects behaviour. Food is used to create a positive response to the stimulant.

Counter conditioning: The process of getting rid of an unwanted response. In counter conditioning, the unwanted response does not just disappear; it is replaced by a new, wanted response.

Rewards: praise, play and food. High value food is cooked chicken, beef, cured meats, hot dogs, freeze dried meats, cheese etc.

Under Threshold – The dog shows no sign of fear or anxiety towards the stimulus present.

At Threshold – The point at which the dog may go from showing no fear or anxiety to showing some awareness of the stimulus.

Over Threshold – The dog shows apparent signs of fear and anxiety towards the stimulus presents. The only way to calm the dog is to create distance between the dog and stimulus.

Lure-Reward Training – Enticing the dog to move into a specific position with a lure and then rewarding the behaviour with the food lure once that position is obtained with a kibble or treat.

Marker Training – The timing of using a word, sounds or click of a clicker along with rewards to signal the dog that they have achieved the desired behaviour.