Friday, October 8, 2010

PROGRESSIVE REINFORCEMENT TRAINING MANIFESTO

By Emily Larlham

The Need for a New Term:


A type of animal training exists that involves no forms of intimidation, confrontation, violence, reprimands, or domination.


This non-violent type of training has gone under many names: “Clicker Training,” “Positive Training,” “Positive Reinforcement Training,” and “Reward Training,” among others. However there is a need for a more specific, more accurate, more inspirational term. This is because the above terms have been used so loosely in recent years that they may soon lose their original meanings altogether. How has this happened? Trainers who use compulsion methods may incorporate a clicker (a noise maker to mark desirable behavior) and refer to themselves as a “Clicker Trainers.” Trainers who use painful or intimidating methods may include food or toy rewards in their training and refer to themselves as “Reward Trainers” or “Positive Reinforcement Trainers.” It is already possible that a member of the public may seek the guidance of a trainer who claims to be “Positive,” only to find out that this trainer routinely uses physical violence towards animals.


I propose a new term that trainers and members of the general public can use to refer to this type of modern training – a training system that is not only humane, compassionate, and reliable, but is also based on the latest scientific studies. Because this form of training constantly incorporates the latest and most reliable scientific findings, and because it furthers an evolutionary movement toward a more harmonious relationship between humans and the animals who live with them, it shall be referred to as Progressive Reinforcement Training.

READ THE REST OF THE MANIFESTO BY CLICKING HERE

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6 comments:

Esther & Calou said...

Great initiative ! I just read the whole manifesto and find that you explain very clearly what the foundations are. I'm actually reading "Don't shoot the dog" of Karen Pryor and recognize lots of the things you explain. I completely subscribe to the Progressive Reinforcement Training and try to increase comprehension and acceptance of this method in my club here in France. Mostly by being an example with my dog, in discussions with fellow members and trainers and in passing on reading material. The change is happening, but it will take some time for trainers to loose their old habits.

Laurence said...

Hi Emily!
I'm a dog owner, from Montreal,Canada, and I'm just starting with a trainer that follows your method. I'm really glad I could find a trainer like her, because "real" clicker training, or shall I say PRT, is still very much unknown here up North... Thanks to you and your videos, I have learned that there is a positive way to train my dogs and it motivated me to find a good positive trainer in my hometown! Keep up with the excellent work!

Laurence (and of course, Chico and Nouka) ;-)

Emily Larlham said...

thank you both for the support!
I really appreciate it

alomaro said...

Hola Emily!!
I found it very interesting to know thoroughly the Term PROGESSIVE REINFORCEMENT TRAINNING which I find very useful for all those people who avoid physical or verbal harm our dogs Thank you for your Contributions to the world of Training in Positive.

Omar

Dazzle's Mom said...

Thank-you! I have been searching for something just like this!
Chris

KD Mathews said...

Im extremely curious....how would you apply the theory of progressive reinforcement training when somebody has a dog seeking to dominate the owner, and uses growls and bites to assert itself in the household? Im just a little lost in how a treat or praise would be worked into communicating to a dog trying to assert itself within a household. Hopefully you can help me understand.