Lesson 1, Topic 1
In Progress

Mix Prey and Defense

Mix Prey and Defense

Example 1 – First Time Putting it Together

In its simplicity:

  • The Helper moves with the prey object, the dog is quiet, getting ready to bite.
  • The Helper is stationary, the dog guards, and barks.

Helper is moving with the prey object – 02:00 sec. The dog is quiet.

Hepler locks up and gives a signal for barking – a whip. It is acceptable to use this signal in the beginning steps. Later on, we will fade the whip and expect the dog to bark because the Helper simply locks up – 02:03 sec. Do not create a Behavior Chain and dependency of the Helper’s whip to activate the dog.

Because these are the beginning steps, Tobias reacts by jumping as if scared in response to every bark. This always will be faded away – 02:06 sec.

After a couple or reps – reinforce the dog by giving him a clear bite.

You can tell by a high pitch bark that a dog is not as confident as he could be. We will now reinforce for barking – 03:50 sec. You are looking even for a couple of powerful barks. Do not expect duration.

Fundamental mistake to avoid. Please observe – 05:23 sec.

The Helper activates the dog by a crack of the whip and locks up. The dog is still in prey mode and barks weekly. In many instances, Helpers would be tempted to reactivate the dog by another crack of a whip. Please do not do it – you will create dependency. Merely reset by walking away and trying again. If the dog is still locked in prey – drop the pillow, separate it mentally, and then you can agitate the dog to get him back into a Defense mode – 05:43 sec.

With time, it will become more clear to the dog. We recommend “switching gears” training for 10-15 sessions

Second Session

Three days with a good Helper can teach our dog how to activate the Helper, and how to be quiet while in prey.

If you feel the dog needs more aggression – go back to “Scare the Helper Away,” if the dog needs more prey drive – move the prey around and give him a bite. Use your judgment.

When the dog is clear about the types of drive, you can finalize Barking, Biting, and Secondary Obedience.

On a side note: it helps when the Helper is good at Marker Training. He should clearly mark the appropriate behavior and reinforce the dog. The dog barks well – mark and reinforce with the bite or mark and switch into prey. Both are reinforcements.