Showing posts from August, 2021

Fellow Creatures: Helping People Switch to Reward-Based Dog Training Methods

We know that reward-based methods are the best way to train dogs. Lately in the news I’ve read various stories about ways to encourage more people to get vaccinated in order to make a difference to the pandemic, and I’ve been seeing parallels with dog training. Photo: Samson Katt/Pexels So I wrote about it on my Psych Today blog, Fellow Creatures, and you can read it here: Helping people switch to reward-based dog training methods . And if you're interested in this topic, you might also like: Why don’t more people use positive reinforcement to train dogs? (about my own research) To promote positive reinforcement dog training, teach, engage, and amplify (three tips based on principles from science communication) By Zazie Todd PhD Zazie Todd, PhD, is the award-winning author of Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy and Purr: The Science of Making Your Cat Happy . She is the creator of the popular blog, Companion Animal Psychology and also has a column at Psychology Today .

Why You Need To Reward Your Dog in Training, According to the Experts

Dog obedience training and behaviour modification should use reward-based methods, according to a new position statement from the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior. Photo: xkunclova/Shutterstock By Zazie Todd, PhD This page contains affiliate links which means I may earn a commission on qualifying purchases at no cost to you. Dog training is not regulated, and against a backdrop of misinformation and out-dated ideas, it can be hard for dog guardians to know where to seek help. As the science has changed over the years, so have our ideas about the best ways to train dogs. And so today the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB) publishes its new, highly-anticipated position statement on humane dog training .   The statement was written by the veterinarians and doctoral-level animal behaviourists in the Society. It provides guidance on the best ways to train dogs , which are both humane and fun.  The statement begins, “Evidence supports the use of reward-based

Companion Animal Psychology Book Club August 2021

"I love Wesley the Owl ! Not since Konrad Lorenz have I read such an honest, vivid, and revealing account of the rich and complex life of an individual bird."--Sy Montgomery. By Zazie Todd, PhD This page contains affiliate links which means I may earn a commission on qualifying purchases at no cost to you. This month's choice for the Animal Book Club is Wesley the Owl: The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl by Stacey O'Brien.  From the back cover, "On Valentine’s Day 1985, biologist Stacey O’Brien adopted Wesley, a baby barn owl with an injured wing who could not have survived in the wild. Over the next nineteen years, O’Brien studied Wesley’s strange habits with both a tender heart and a scientist’s eye—and provided a mice-only diet that required her to buy the rodents in bulk (28,000 over the owl’s lifetime). She watched him turn from a helpless fluff ball into an avid com­municator with whom she developed a language all their own. Eventually he b

I'm Presenting at Geek Week 2021

The Pet Professional Guild's Geek Week 2021 is an online educational event with internationally renowned speakers--and I'm excited to be one of them! By Zazie Todd PhD I’m delighted to share with you that I’m going to be presenting at this year's Geek Week, taking place on November 13-17. Geek Week is a virtual educational event hosted by the Pet Professional Guild and its partners. It’s aimed at pet professionals – as well as anyone with a wider interest in animal behavior and training. Geek Week 2021 will be a little bit unique in that it will feature three educational tracks – the A Track, the B Track, and the C Track.     A is for Academic, featuring national and international academics introducing and discussing their research.     B is for Behavior, featuring hands-on, mechanically skilled dog trainers who will provide a takeaway ‘how-to’ of their subject.     And C is for Consulting, featuring business, marketing, and personal growth topics. In other words, Geek Week

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