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I was wondering what are peoples views here to training, do you use treats?
I've taught Noah basic things with the use of treats and he catches on incredibly quickly, sit, lay down, jump etc. I find them very useful to guide him into positions I want as well.

However today I went to his first puppy class and the trainer bans the use of them, his method is strictly no treats as he believes the dog should be doing what you tell it to do rather than doing it just for a treat, he says that you can wean a dog of a toy but once a dog has had a treat its gone.

I'm not sure I entirely agree with this as he got us to use a toy instead, now I believe all dogs are individuals some are food oriented others are praise or play, at the end of the day it's just rewarding a wanted behavior?

Opinions?

For Noah he was so distracted being scared out of his little mind a toy wasn't wanted lol.
 

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I used food, but just not every time. Just vocal praise and affection some of the time. It worked brilliantly for Harley, he knows all his commands but Bambi gives me the 'wheres the chicken?' look when asked to do anything lol.
All dogs are different, there is no right or wrong way to train. Continue using treats if it is working for you and Noah. I would find a more flexible puppy class if I were you too.
 

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Mine is a mixture of "gimme the treat" and/or her yellow squeaky ball. She learns quickly but learns faster with bits of cheese, for example. She will do what I tell her most of the time with or without treats. She will just do it more willingly if she knows she will get her piece.

I dont think she would have really been willing to do anything without those bits of cheese. I know she expects them now, but she doesnt get it all the time anymore, now that we perfected a few commands. She does tend to run to get her little ball when she knows she has been good.

I do give her treats (cheese or chicken) every single time I catch her peeing in the right place though. She runs right to the refrigerator right after. That doesnt bother me at all..as she will listen to me 98% of the time with other things, even without treats now.
 

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I use treats and toys ninja can learn anything just by enticing him with a toy. When I use a treat I find he gets sooo hyper and does all the tricks before I ask him to like hell keep Rollin over instead of what I'm asking lol.
 

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I sometimes use treats, but usually I reward her with play. When I teach her a new trick, I'll use the treats, but I wean her off once she gets the hang of it. Stella is very food motivated, but to the point where she loses her head and can't concentrate. But it helps make things "stick" for her.

A dog is just as likely to abuse play rewards. I'd imagine that it'd be kind of annoying for your dog to expect a play session after being told to sit. Honestly, I think the dog owners should use whatever helps it stick.
 

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I was wondering what are peoples views here to training, do you use treats?
I've taught Noah basic things with the use of treats and he catches on incredibly quickly, sit, lay down, jump etc. I find them very useful to guide him into positions I want as well.

However today I went to his first puppy class and the trainer bans the use of them, his method is strictly no treats as he believes the dog should be doing what you tell it to do rather than doing it just for a treat, he says that you can wean a dog of a toy but once a dog has had a treat its gone.

I'm not sure I entirely agree with this as he got us to use a toy instead, now I believe all dogs are individuals some are food oriented others are praise or play, at the end of the day it's just rewarding a wanted behavior?

Opinions?

For Noah he was so distracted being scared out of his little mind a toy wasn't wanted lol.
It sounds like the problem is not treats or no treats- as I use both teats or not treats- but that you have a trainer who does not believe in positive reinforcement. If I went to a puppy class and a trainer told me without even taking the time to get to know my dog- NO TREATS- I would walk right out. Also a puppy should not be scared at class ever, if they are and the trainer is not very worried about that then you need a new trainer. Dogs can be weaned off of treats without any problem at all- I have seen it happen literally hundreds of times!

I don't give my dog treats every time the do something and in fact you can't have teats in an agility or obedience ring so we HAVE to get off them eventually but this trainer sounds like the ultra alpha type, whip your dog into shape kind and I would run for the hills if I were you. I agree you don't need treats to teach a dog to be polite in your home but puppy class without them at all- come on. Especially for a shy or scared puppy.
 

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I wanted to add now that I see you puppy is 12 weeks old- and therefor in a fear stage- find a new trainer. Puppy class at that age should be all fun and games, for socializing and you should basically act as a treat dispenser at class for a dog that age. I am not a 100% positive reinforcement person even, I am the leader of my pack and my dogs work for me because I am in charge- BUT- a 12 week old puppy needs to learn class is fun and you are a provider who they can trust and get yummy things from. Now is not the time for whipping a dog into shape- she is barely just a baby at this point.
 

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My chi has some what of a stubborn disposition, or rather sometimes a bit too smart. A friend of mine has an extremely obedient pup, and she said she didn't like petsmart courses because she didn't believe in rewards every time. For Haru I also trained her using treats and now when she doesn't see treats sometimes she would stare and hope she gets a treat after doing a trick, or not doing anything at all when she doesn't see or even SMELL a treat. There are also times when she just isn't going to do what you want. She will stare and ask you why you are telling her to do something stupid. I had huskies before so my chi is so much better because she loves to please! If you want to use treats just make sure she actually understands the command and the fact that it must be done the majority of the time and not only sometimes. If my chi is excited or distracted she won't listen to anything I say and that already takes away some obedience points. IMO treats are good mainly to teach, but once the idea is there I would switch to tjngs like hand signals which I find also help a lot.
 

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My chi has some what of a stubborn disposition, or rather sometimes a bit too smart. A friend of mine has an extremely obedient pup, and she said she didn't like petsmart courses because she didn't believe in rewards every time. For Haru I also trained her using treats and now when she doesn't see treats sometimes she would stare and hope she gets a treat after doing a trick, or not doing anything at all when she doesn't see or even SMELL a treat. There are also times when she just isn't going to do what you want. She will stare and ask you why you are telling her to do something stupid. I had huskies before so my chi is so much better because she loves to please! If you want to use treats just make sure she actually understands the command and the fact that it must be done the majority of the time and not only sometimes. If my chi is excited or distracted she won't listen to anything I say and that already takes away some obedience points. IMO treats are good mainly to teach, but once the idea is there I would switch to tjngs like hand signals which I find also help a lot.
I agree- teats every time actually make things more difficult. Also some dogs respond better to different things. But making a blanket statement that there will be no teats allowed in a class is a totally different thing.
 

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We train using positive reinforcement which involves treats. Once a trick or behavior is master treats are weaned. It works wonderfully. I think it's very impractical to have to play after every trick. Personally, I would also find a different trainer. Noah shouldn't be terrified during class. Chloe is a VERY shy dog, but when we pull up in the parking lot for class she starts wagging her tail because she's so excited to go to class. That's how it should be.


Sent from my iPhone using PetGuide
 

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We train using positive reinforcement which involves treats. Once a trick or behavior is master treats are weaned. It works wonderfully. I think it's very impractical to have to play after every trick. Personally, I would also find a different trainer. Noah shouldn't be terrified during class. Chloe is a VERY shy dog, but when we pull up in the parking lot for class she starts wagging her tail because she's so excited to go to class. That's how it should be.


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That made me smile. I can just picture her little tail wagging in anticipation..You are right, that is how it should be :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
What I've taught him I've done it through hand signals / treats, but like others have weaned him of the treats I use the treats as a lure to shape him into a position like lay down etc when teachign him something new.

But I also reinforce commands by making him doing it before I give him a toy or dinner etc.

I don't give my dog treats every time the do something and in fact you can't have teats in an agility or obedience ring so we HAVE to get off them eventually but this trainer sounds like the ultra alpha type, whip your dog into shape kind and I would run for the hills if I were you. I agree you don't need treats to teach a dog to be polite in your home but puppy class without them at all- come on. Especially for a shy or scared puppy.
I think thats a bit unfair tbh, not quite sure what gave you that impression.
He isn't like that at all, I would have liked the first class to have a been a bit more socalizing rather than diving right into sit commands for a first lesson but he wasn't roughing the dogs up, ironically the dog that worried Noah the most was his whom his sister was handling as he was incredibly loud.

Noah was scared/ultra submissive because he basically hasn't heard many dogs bark let alone see a big dog before, can't exactly hide him from that forever he has to get used it.
When we had to walk around the hall the trainer let me sit with Noah and let the other dogs come to him instead, if he didn't have his concerns he wouldn't have told me to do this.
However his brother who is used to other dogs as the owner has another one was there to reassure him and we where often paired up to give him a bit of courage and have a playwrestle, by the end of the class Noah was getting more settled but it was a brand new experiance for him, loud puppies barking in a hall is going to rather scary at first!
I don't know what you people expect me to do tbh, run away everytime he gets worried? It's only day one :rolleyes:

I'm going to discuss with the trainer though more about the treat aspect, as I think it's no different that motivating with a toy in my eyes! but also because he's so shy I want the experiance to be positive and if that means treating then I will... -/class rebel/- :cool: regardless I've paid now so I can't leave and I went for the socializing aspect more than anything, It's only once a week I will continue with treat training at home, it's just I've never come across training without the use of them but I shall keep an open mind.

I get a bit annoyed that people seem to pluck things out of nowhere then continue to post like it is the reality and criticize everything ! I don't believe anywhere in my post I said I want a new trainer? I simply wanted to discuss training methods, not how awful me and my class apparantly is :sleepy3:
 

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Training is something people have really strong feelings about. It's very important to only use positive reinforcement. I don't think this trainer is using negative reinforcement since he does encourage toys. But personally, I strongly believe in the use of healthy treats, so I don't think I would like the class much. Training has done wonders for Chloe. She's still very shy, but she's come such a long way. And I give total credit to her training and trainer. I think as long as that's how you feel about it at the end of the day then it's perfectly fine to use the trainer you're already using. Just be very wary because there's a lot of trainers who do use negative reinforcement. I think that's all anyone is trying to say.
 

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It was me who suggested you look for another class. Not because I think your trainer is bad/wrong (I don't know him or his methods) but because you prefer to use food rewards and he doesn't allow them. There are LOTS of trainers who do use treats, maybe you need to find someone with a similar view. As I said before, there are lots of ways of training a dog, it is just a matter of finding one that works for you and Noah. Finding a trainer who is on your wavelength and who you trust is very important.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Training is something people have really strong feelings about. It's very important to only use positive reinforcement. I don't think this trainer is using negative reinforcement since he does encourage toys. But personally, I strongly believe in the use of healthy treats, so I don't think I would like the class much. Training has done wonders for Chloe. She's still very shy, but she's come such a long way. And I give total credit to her training and trainer. I think as long as that's how you feel about it at the end of the day then it's perfectly fine to use the trainer you're already using. Just be very wary because there's a lot of trainers who do use negative reinforcement. I think that's all anyone is trying to say.
What do you consider negative reinforcement? as far as I can see unwatned behavior is just ignored. I haven't seen him really do anything that I wouldn't do it's just he seems to do it without treats.
I don't have much choice of trainers in my area as I can't drive, this one is at the hall at the top of my road and is also someone I used to go with school with though do not know well, plus since Noah's brother is going seemed good enough to me.
Afterall I'm only after the experiance and the socialization, one hour per week compared to all the hours otherwise I have Noah, I'm sure I can teach him what I want to do with my methods at home and then see if it continues into a busy enviroment whilst also taking onboard on what the trainer has to say.
But we shall see what happens next time...and I would like to dicuss his views of training and his points against using treats.

I don't know just feel some of the comments were a bit dramatic really.
 

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I have had 4 chi's go to puppy class. Several of them went twice. One never got down out of my arms until 'graduation' when she actually walked around. She was terrified. I just did my thing, and walked around with her in my arms. Put her down for a few seconds, until I saw she was getting scared again. Up she came. This dog went to 2 puppy classes, one regular class, one therapy dog class, and finally was a certified therapy dog! Patience does work. I just took my time, and the instructors understood I was there for socialization mostly. Most instructors will let you take the 2nd class for free.
The dog I have now just got the AKC puppy award. She was also extremely frightened. I went to dog camp in Vermont for a week, and she got passed around to many, many people and also took a puppy class there. It did her a world of good, and she came home, and did great at the test. The instructor asked me if I wanted to take the test, and I said sure---she passed.
 

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Negative reinforcement can include smacking, shouting, scruffing, electric shock collars, etc basically it is punishing bad behaviour instead of rewarding good. There are people out there who still think it is acceptable to hit a dog. Obviously this type of 'training' would be devastating to a dog like Noah, and this is why people have passionate opinions.
 

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What do you consider negative reinforcement? as far as I can see unwatned behavior is just ignored. I haven't seen him really do anything that I wouldn't do it's just he seems to do it without treats.
I don't have much choice of trainers in my area as I can't drive, this one is at the hall at the top of my road and is also someone I used to go with school with though do not know well, plus since Noah's brother is going seemed good enough to me.
Afterall I'm only after the experiance and the socialization, one hour per week compared to all the hours otherwise I have Noah, I'm sure I can teach him what I want to do with my methods at home and then see if it continues into a busy enviroment whilst also taking onboard on what the trainer has to say.
But we shall see what happens next time...and I would like to dicuss his views of training and his points against using treats.

I don't know just feel some of the comments were a bit dramatic really.
What Stella said is correct about negative reinforcement. I never said this trainer was using negative reinforcement. I just said that is why people are passionate about the subject. One person said he sounded like he might use negative reinforcement. That doesnt mean everyone thinks that. Everyone is just giving their opinion. That's the point of a forum.
 
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