Do you believe you have a clear understanding of force fetch; it's goals, purposes, processes?
I appreciate your willingness to learn! I understand your aversion to force. Many people initially react to the word “force” being paired with “dog training” until they come to better understand the subject. To that end this thread is dedicated.To tell you the truth, anything forced sounds wrong but would love to learn more about it!.
Sharon,Yes, I feel that I understand the goals and methods of Force Fetch. I had one golden who did very well on force fetch, another who was just about ruined by force fetching - the 'pro' said he 'wasn't tough enough' and 'needed to stay out of the kitchen since he could not stand the heat'...this after making my peaceful, loving Rowdy a nervous and skittish dog who took 4 years of positive training to get back into the ring.
I hope to successfully illustrate yet another side of force fetch; the accurate one. There are, at present, three distinct schools of thought on force fetch; its goals, purposes, and mechanisms.So, I have seen both sides of force fetch and have decided I would rather stay out of the kitchen than have another beautiful golden on the 'washed out' list. Was the pro wrong? Yes, certainly he should have known to ease up but I too was wrong in listening to the advise that every dog needs to be force fetch trained, and not changing trainers way sooner.
Mine too. Every one, every time, in every circumstance; mark or blind. In all conditions, all terrain, all distances up to and beyond 500 yards, if needed. Doubles, triples, quads, an occasional quint + blind combinations. They also handle like sports cars, cast off land into water, out of the suction of poison birds...in other words, they have all the tools. Being lucky and being smart are not the same things. 30+ years and several hundred retreivers have taught me that being smart is worth the effort.Hmmmm. Don't really get it.
My dogs retrieve on command.
I actually addressed this above, but I'll be happy to provide further clarity. The word “force” does not imply an amount. But there is a pervasive knee jerk reaction to that word being synonymous with brutality, pain or harm. Not so, and certainly not necessarily so in the force fetch process. That will come as news to some.I had a question on terminology. I find that when trainers talk about using pain or aversive methods with dogs, they often use a euphemism. Is it fair to characterize "pressure" as a euphemism here for "discomfort" or "pain?"
Force: 1 – compel, 2 – influence that causes motion, 3 – gain against resistance (may compel or correct behavior in dogs)When you say the trainer determines the amount of "pressure," could we substitute "discomfort" and still be accurate, or would there be situations in which you'd consider something "pressure" that wasn't at all uncomfortable or painful for the dog?
The term "shock" is rather broad and general. We aren't talking about physically harmful amounts of electricity, such as one would encounter from a wall outlet. More correctly, we're talking about measured amounts of low quality electrical stimulus. I use the best e-collar there is; the Tri Tronics G3 Pro 500. I also have a G2 Pro 500. they allow me maximal variation in intensity of stimulus. They also allow me to choose 'nicks' (pre-measured momentary applications), or so-called 'burns' (a completely erroneous reference, except that the stimulus is applied continuously as long as the button is depressed). In addition, one of the greatest aspects of these units is a 'low' - 'medium' - 'high' selection of each of 6 levels of intensity. The majority of our dogs work on levels 1 & 2, and we hand test all our collars so we know exactly what we're delivering.Another example of this principle is the use of the word "nick" in e-collar training instead of "shock."
I realize these questions might sound like a bit of a trap, but I really am sincerely curious.
You didn't really answer the question. When you say "pressure," you often mean causing physical discomfort, right? You say you're not tormenting dogs, and I believe that, but I consider an ear pinch or a toe hitch the use of discomfort. I see the point in distinguishing that from "pain" in training, but an ear pinch is absolutely a "distressing sensation in a particular part of the body."When I say "pressure", that's the correct context. When I say "pain", I'm referring to its correct context: –noun 1.physical suffering or distress, as due to injury, illness, etc.2.a distressing sensation in a particular part of the body: a back pain. 3.mental or emotional suffering or torment: I am sorry my news causes you such pain.
I do not teach anyone to torment or injure a dog. If that's happening to your dog, it isn't correct or necessary. As I said, there are rare exceptions, but I mean rare. Now that I am no longer a pro, and only train my own dogs, if I meet one requiring that much pressure, he's done. He can be someone's pet. I like bright, sensitive, eager dogs, and will not live with one I have to train through pain.
In my analogy about blowing out a candle, I referenced that as an application of force (pressure). If someone blew the same puff of air at you as at that candle, do you think it would qualify as 'discomfort'? If you pushed a pencil off the edge of a table, that would be an application of pressure. But if someone used the same amount of pressure and pushed against your shoulder (for example), do you think that would quaify as 'discomfort'.You didn't really answer the question. When you say "pressure," you often mean causing physical discomfort, right?
How much pressure? What I'm telling you is that 'pressure' and 'force' do not imply or specify and amount. It is the amount of pressure that each dog will determine as being uncomfortable or not. That is what you must read, and it's pretty simple.You say you're not tormenting dogs, and I believe that, but I consider an ear pinch or a toe hitch the use of discomfort.
I think you're making an assumption that "an ear pinch" comes with a pre-determined amount of pressure that represents 'discomfort'. It does not. I've finished many dogs that clearly only regarded the amount of pressure used on them as an annoyance. Each one is different. I think you need to see some of the close up video in SmartFetch to see the 'reads'; just a shift in the eyebrows, or eye position - a distinct, however small change in the dog's demeanor that tells you he would like this new sensation to go away. I'm not talking about dogs writhing in pain, as some trainers have done for decades.I see the point in distinguishing that from "pain" in training, but an ear pinch is absolutely a "distressing sensation in a particular part of the body."
Yes, this is the "Hold" phase, and logically comes first. We teach the dog to hold what's been placed in his mouth until commanded to release. During this phase they are introduced to small corrections for chewing, dropping, etc. It certainly is an application of pressure; both physical and mental. Normally, both are in very low amounts. It's more a matter of conditioning than forcing these behaviors. But they are supported by pressure.Evan,
In the early stages of non-shaped fetch training, the mouth is opened and the object (dumbbell, bumper etc) is placed in the dogs mouth. This may take effort and then a finger could be placed under the chin to remind the dog to hold the object.
Would you consider this pressure? I think it could be considered mental pressure more than physical pressure, but pressure still.
Of course not, but in terms of application of "pressure" to a dog, why does it work if it isn't unpleasant in any way? Obviously you don't have to cause the dog serious pain, but this kind of "pressure" needs to be unpleasant so the dog wants it to stop. If he wants the sensation to go away, it's because it's uncomfortable. I think "annoyed" is an odd way to describe a dog who isn't enjoying an ear pinch. We can argue about whether it's "annoyance" or "discomfort," but we're talking about a physical stimulus the dog doesn't like and is trying to avoid.In my analogy about blowing out a candle, I referenced that as an application of force (pressure). If someone blew the same puff of air at you as at that candle, do you think it would qualify as 'discomfort'?
And you seem determined to completely miss anything I say that speaks to an understanding that yes, SOME people can implement a "good" FF program while others, IMO, (the vast majority of others) have more problems with it.Stephanie,
You seem determined to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Force fetch is evil and brutal because of how badly some people have applied it. That flies in the face of reason.
People have driven cars badly, but I'll bet you drive anyway. People have flown airplanes wrong, but people still fly anyway. More people are killed each year with baseball bats than with guns. Are 3-day waiting periods for ball bat purchases in our future?:doh:
It's not the process. Hold the people accountable. If someone ruins a dog with force fetch, they would have ruined them in some other way without it. Performing FF is not like surgery. It's not like handling nitroglycerine, either. You have to screw this up, and that's most often because someone did it with a "me vs. the dog" attitude, and that attitude will eventually permeate other areas of their work with dogs.
Sorry, this doesn't wash.
Actually, I'd say the crying out part is true most of the time, but there are some dogs who are just very vocal when they are in a situation they don't like. I have a small dog who screams anytime I attempt to restrain him if he wants to be doing something else. So, if I put a hand in his collar, or hold a paw, he sounds like I'm killing him, but I'm not really causing any pain at all.You can squeeze your own ear to see the different amounts of pressure that you can apply. It can vary anywhere from just fingers on the ear to gently squeezing to pinching with nails digging in. If someone took hold of my ear, even if they didn't squeeze it, I'd find it really annoying. At first I might try my own ways of getting the hand off, including pushing the person away, yelling at them, etc. Eventually, I'd get tired of it and just do whatever it was they wanted me to do, even though I wasn't in pain, just annoyed and ready to get that person off my ear.I think we can all agree that by the time the dog is crying out, writhing, or panicking, too much pain has been applied, right?