Train with your brain, not pain

The training equation


At Happy Hounds, one of the things we feel very passionately about is using kind, effective, reward based dog training methods, based on the science of how dogs learn.  The idea of inflicting fear, pain and harm to our dogs – through the use of aversive training techniques – is not something we would ever consider.

The use of harsh training techniques and methods, such as shock collars, anti-bark (citronella) collars, choke chains, prong and pinch collars and electronic containment systems (which shock the dog, if they pass the invisible boundary), have no place in modern dog training. In every day speak we would recognise these methods and devices as punishment and, indeed, they are.

However, when it comes to training, the technical term for the use of these techniques is ‘Positive Punishment’ (also known as P+).  Quite rightly, you may say: “what an earth is ‘positive’ about these methods?” This is where language and terminology can get confusing.

We tend to think of ‘positive’ as being pleasant, beneficial or good, which it is when used as an adjective. In training and, more specifically, in operant conditioning the ‘positive’ means the ‘addition of’ something; whereas ‘negative’ means the withdrawal (subtraction) or withholding of something.

We like to think of operant conditioning as the training equation and, with this in mind, have a FREE downloadable leaflet which explains it in more detail.

Click the PDF icon to download Train with your brain, not pain.