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In the world of dog training, a lot of people are trying to train their dog with a focus solely on the use of reinforcement. But there can be a disparity in the success people have when using rewards. We’re going to turn the microscope on why the outcome varies between trainers, why it’s happening, and what we can do about it so everyone can have success.

In the episode you'll hear:

  • The reasons that animal training fails.
  • How to get brilliant at understanding and using reinforcement values.
  • What motivational currency is for your dog.
  • The difference between a commemorative coin and a thousand dollars an hour.
  • Why to vary the treats you give your dog when training.
  • How different locations and activities can require differing rewards.
  • The food rewards I use with my dogs and how I rank those rewards.
  • My exact formula for what reinforcement to use when.
  • Why to consider your dog’s uncertainty and distraction value.
  • How to rank a reward’s motivational currency and the scale to use.
  • The reason frequency changes the value of a reinforcer.
  • Why I use high value treats for husbandry behaviors and how I transfer value.

            Susan Garrett’s Reinforcement Formula:
                       RV > DU + DV

                       RV = Reinforcement Value
                       DU = Dog’s Uncertainty
                       DV = Distraction Value

Resources:

Episode Transcript