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Q: What kind of dog training have you had for your dog?

May 12, 2009 | By Midwestwoman | 9 answers | Expired: 1942 days ago

Midwestwoman

I'm not asking for myself, only doing a survey, because I just heard of someone who is taking her dog to a class where the trainer recommended an alpha roll. Please respond by telling me what kind of tools and methods you use to train your dog - choke chain, prong collar, shock collar, alpha roll, positive reinforcement, clicker, etc. Thanks.

Readers' Answers (9)
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Jerry M.
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May 15, 2009

I am currently going to petsmart. It's ok. My wife likes it. I was really hoping to socialize ripley more than anything since we've been working with him since we got him. Our trainer at petsmart is really into a food reward program and a clicker program. My aunt is a dog trainer and she swears by corrections using a prong collar.

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Stacy H.
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May 14, 2009

I do happen to believe in the alpha roll. Your dog needs a leader who it can trust and depend on when the situation arises. I have mostly had big dogs like Rotts and currently have a shepherd mix, heeler mix, and a pitt mix that need a leader not a play mate. I also have another mix breed dog that doesn't require the same amount of leadership, so I think it depends on the dog and the owner. As far as training collars, I have used a prong collar in the beginning stages of training when it was called for. For example the mixed breed dog that is a real softy I have never put one on her, but my pit mix is now starting to work without one. And I am embarrassed to say that I have used a shock collar. I have chickens and guineas and when the pit mix came to live with us she would not stop trying to catch them. I exhausted ever idea I had before trying the shock collar and I put it on myself before putting it on her. It worked like a dream and it only took a few shocks before she gave it up. We now have a very peaceful farm where all the critters can live together in peace, without fear of being eaten by each other. A person seeking training for their dog needs to decide what is right for them and their dog and grow along side their pets.

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Elisa D.
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May 13, 2009

The more I study dogs and dog training, the more the alpha roll is just wrong. Although some trainers endorse it as natural dog behavior, in most cases, it is not used the way a dog would use it. It can actually increase the problem rather than solve it. And besides, positive reinforcement is so much better in getting *lasting* results. It may take a little longer, but using positive methods builds your dog's confidence and trust in you. I would avoid anything that punishes a dog - like barking collars or shock collars. You can get the same results and not teach your dog fear using positive reinforcement. Sometimes it's tempting (or more self-gratifying) to do it the faster way, but I would just recommend positive reinforcement methods. And working to figure out how you can communicate better with your dog.

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Jillian
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May 13, 2009

i use positive association, for the most part. sometimes, when it comes to it, i use the stare down {though more w/cats than w/dogs}. i also like humane tools, like clickers, that promote positive association.
i think the alpha roll is on most terms, unnecessary and crude. now, i've seen cesar millan do this for extreme cases and if its used as an absolute last resort, i'm somewhat alright w/it. but few dogs are to that point and to teach it in a training class is absurd.

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Ethel02
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May 13, 2009

Positive reinforcement, for all 3 girls & it hasn't failed me yet, I am not the leader of the pack, that would be my oldest greyhound (17) she has trained my 2 other girls they listen to me because she makes them ( she just lets me think it's me) the only thing I've ever had to use was a gentle leader for my rescued Black Lab, Annie, she was over 8 & just lived in a back yard and she is now close to 100 lbs (70+ when I got her) even at 70# she was a handful, I used the gentle leader & she hated it, would throw herself down on grass as we walked and drag her head on the grass till she got it off her nose, I just flipped it back on, then when I would walk her without it & she started to drag me I would take the leader out of my pocket & say "gentle leader" a look of horror on her face & a nice walk, 3 yrs later it still works, and the middle girl another grey just does what the other 2 do. I love the 4 answers before me, NOT 1 has said they are the alpha, thank you all.

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JerZgirl
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May 13, 2009

I only train and recommend people to trainers that train using postitive reinforcement.

I went to a trainer with my first dog who recommded the alpha roll and guess how that worked out??? The dog had to be put down for aggression.

I would tell this person to seek out a real dog trainer that doesn't worship Ceasar Milan.

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Lherbertson
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May 13, 2009

I have no idea what an alpha role is. I used Petsmart for puppy kindergarden to help socialize my dog. We work on the basic commands 15 minutes a day. When I want him to learn something new, I use a high-value treat like hot dog and lots of positive reinforcement. I use a gentle walker harness on our walks. When he is not pulling, I praise him and give him treats.

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Krista
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May 13, 2009

I have been using positive reinforcement and the clicker for my puppy. The trainer that I use also recommends them. Toki (my dog) and I have gotten two qualifying scores in Rally Novice this year (hoping for one more so we get a title) I also plan on enrolling her in a class for Agility to start doing that next year. The trainer that I use shows dogs regularly. I can't say that I know for sure how many she has titles on.

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Azzurrapl
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May 12, 2009

I went to Petco and walked out (terrible method used in that store) ... then I went to Petsmart and found out about Dr. Dunbar - now I am at St. Huberts and they use positive training according to Dr, Dunbar and others. I wouldn't use any other training method. I have a clicker and this summer hopefully will use it to learn some tricks. I use the easy walk harness for our walks and nothing else - oh no - bags of boiled chicken and steak for rewards. I am afraid that until a certain show on Nat Geo goes off the air - people will continue to use outdated modes of training THAT NOW HAVE BEEN SHOWN TO MAKE Behaviors in certain dogs worse. I am attending a workshop with Dr, Dunbar and Dr. Dobson - can't wait!

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