Saturday, October 2, 2010

A very, very close look at behavior

Yesterday I came across this link about dog training and the interesting critisisms that there are "three kinds of dog training." My first reaction was that the author hasn't spent enough time around dog people to realize there are a million ways to dog training and that if you do want to group it, it's not "positive dog training" and "dominance dog training," but "training the dog" or "not training the dog." He seems to think that all people training dogs get their ideas from other dog trainers, and neglecting that piece where after you have a bit of knowledge, it's easy to come up with a training plan or technique. I don't have to teach all my students how to train a "go to mat." I just have to teach them a bit about clicker training and they can come up with the plan all on their own.

But the very valid point made, is that many dog trainers don't know very much about how the dog's brain works. We don't all need to, and pet owners don't have to know about how neurons work and all of that. There is definitely room for professionals to better understand the brain.

I'm in a "behavioral neuroscience" class right now. And there hasn't been enough of it yet to put use to what I'm learning. But I'm very much hoping that the class will help me better to think about what my human and dog students are learning (as well as my dogs and myself!).

This is something we watched in the class. And again, I don't really know what it has to do with dogs. Supposedly dogs have these "mirror neurons" to some extent, but not as much of people. I haven't been able to find a journal article specifically referencing this or what research was done. Let alone how we can use this to our advantage! But it could help explain why visualization exercises can be useful for people. And maybe why it's important for people to see things done correctly? Should we be utilizing more demos and watching and videos in training classes?

At times like this I feel exceptionally inadequate with teaching/training!

After all that seriousness a cute picture is needed:

1 comment:

Crystal said...

That author is... interesting. Take that how you wish.