This video shows the first day with Jack at my training center. He is with us due to chronic fear and related aggression. No training has been done at the point of this footage. Read more
Tag Archive for: WNY
This is the beginning of week 2 of a “BootCamp” dog training program with Apollo the Doberman. I am using my own Dog Lobo a Belgian Malinois to help provide distraction and Apollo works on downs. At this point Apollo has been training with us for 8 days.
I love training sessions like this because they are for for both human and dog, and they get the dog used to transitioning quickly from excited to calm states. My sidekick Lobo had a good time too; he always appreciates an opportunity to show off his skills.
On a side note, I was really pleased as this was the first time since I got Lobo in November that I had him interact with another un-neutered full grown male. Having two un-neutered males meet for the first time can always be a little hairy (no pun intended), but all these boys wanted to do was play and have a good time.
Josh Moran and his Pit bull ‘King’ learning the “right” position using a place board and markers.
This Video shows trainer Tyler Muto from K9 Connection Dog Training in Buffalo, NY and his 8 month old Malinois puppy ‘Dante’ beginning an exercise for remote position changes (moving from sit-down-stand, at a distance.) Tyler is using a platform to help keep Dante from creeping forward as he learns how to do this.
The foundation for this work has been done using positive reinforcement and marker training. The prerequisites that the dog needs to know are: All of the individual positions, how to transition those while next to you (sit to down, down to stand etc.) and some variation of a ‘place’ command (keep all four feet on an object). The word “no” or “nope” here is not being used as a correction, but rather as a way to communicate to the dog that he made a mistake and he has to try again.
One of our K9 Connection Dog Training Clients, Sarah Giansante, is seen here with her young dog ‘Munson.”
I was amazed when I found that Sarah, at 8 1/2 years old had taken over the responsibility of training the family dog.
Sarah has done an excellent job of giving consistent leadership and guidance to Munson, so he can develop into a well mannered family companion.
This is a video clip showing Tyler Muto and ‘Gia” training position changes (heel, front, under.) This is a typical training session where a specific behavior is chosen and isolated for repetition. There are some minor variations thrown in to keep thing dog from anticipating too much which could cause problems down the line. These variations are important to keep the dog from thinking too much during training. When a dog thinks too much they stop listening to the handler. We always want to make sure that the dog is responding to the commands given, not just performing out of habit.
This clip shows progressions in a behavior modification dog training program for fear based behavior. ‘Bob’ was terrified of the car, and despite all their efforts, his owners could not get him in without excessive force. During the training sessions, we used a ball to motivate the dog to overcome his fear. We also used an electronic training collar to help him stay focused through the fear. Many people think that electronic collars are always used negatively, and will create fear. However, as you can see, with proper guidance, the electronic collar can be a very positive tool, that works to help a dog overcome fear, and become happy and confident.
If you need help training your dog in or around the Buffalo, NY area then contact K-9 Connection at (716) 548-3642
At K9 Connection Dog Training, one of the most important things that we teach our dogs is to pay attention to the handler. This is a crucial part of any successful training program, but what does attention really mean?
Attention can mean different things, or perhaps more appropriately, it can come in varying degrees. For instance: when I get home from work, one of the first things I do is check my email. Now imagine that one day as I am checking my email, my wife walks in and says “Tyler, the garbage really needs to go out.”
I turn to her and respond “Sure honey, I’ll take it out in one sec, just as soon as I’m done reading this message.”
So, in a sense, she got my attention, because I heard her, turned and looked at her, and responded. But most of my attention was still on my email which is why I sat and continued reading. If my mind were a pie chart, my wife maybe had 20% of my attention diverted to her and what she wanted me to do, and 80% was still on the email. I f she were somehow able to reverse that pie chart, and get 80% of my attention on her, then I would have gotten up and taken the garbage, because I would have had enough brain power left to focus on the email.
This is very often what is going on with our dogs when they don’t perform a known command. They’re not trying to be jerks, they are just distracted, and we are unable to redirect their attention adequately. This is usually when we start raising our voice or yanking on a leash. This of course does not solve the problem. Likewise, where most training programs fail, is a over-reliance treats. While treats can be effective as teaching tools to lure a dog into a new position, or reward appropriate behavior, all too often dog trainers and clients alike rely too much on the treat to attract and hold the dogs attention. What happens here is that the dog learns to pay attention to the treat, but never effectively learns to pay attention to the handler. Once the treats are removed from the picture, you are left with a dog who displays zero attention span, and who perhaps will perform a known command in the quiet of her own home where there is not anything more interesting, but soon as you change the environment, or introduce real distractions, it’s almost as if she’s not trained at all.
This is why we place so much importance on teaching attention. It is the overarching condition to all obedience. With clear understanding and proper attention, there’s no reason your dog should not perform a known command.
If you need help with your dog, contact K-9 Connection Dog Training at (716) 548-3642
This is a short clip demonstrating how to do a training exercise called free shaping with markers. Free shaping means that you are progressively marking behaviors that are closer and closer to the end behavior that you are trying to achieve. We use marker training to do this, the most common form of marker training is clicker training, however, I prefer to use my voice. I use the word “yes” in a consistent, happy tone to mark the behaviors that I want. The mark, lets the dog know that a reward is coming, and thus allows us to precisely mark the behavior we want, even if it takes up to a few seconds to get the actual reward to the dog. The most important thing to remember with marker training, is that a reward ALWAYS has to follow the mark, even if you gave the mark accidentally. If you are not familiar with marker training, or if you want to learn more, please review Ed Frawley’s article on marker training your dog by Clicking Here.
In this video I am teaching Dante the ‘Place’ command, which means to have all four feet on an object. Dante has never done the ‘place’ command before nor has he ever done free shaping, so this is an entirely new concept to him. ‘Place’ is a very simple command to teach and for the dog to learn because there are not too many progressions to mark, and it is very black and white: Either you are on the place, or you are off. This is why I chose this exercise to introduce Dante to the game of free shaping, it is easy and fun. I will film more complex free shaping exercises in the future.
If you want, or need assistance training your dog, Contact K-9 Connection Dog Training at (716) 548-3642.
This is Dante at 15 weeks during his morning bitework session. This is his first time on a harness and tie back, and I am very pleased with his intensity, and commitment to the bite. I like to do his bitework first thing in the morning for a few reasons:
1) He is very intense in the morning, and is at his peak energy level.
2) He has not eaten yet. Remember, a dog always has more drive on an empty stomach.
3) The sun is not as hot, so he will not tire as quickly.
I keep these sessions very short (under five minutes), and I always make sure I leave him wanting more. Dante prefers a leather rag to jute or burlap, so I am using the leather bite rag from Elite K9 . I always follow the session with about five minutes of calm affection in his kennel run. I sit with him and calmly pet him while letting him know in a soft voice that he did a good job. I almost never give any affection before the workout. Finally, after he has calmed, I give him his breakfast (food is also a form of affection). It’s a great way to start the day!