“Dog friendly training is training that utilises primarily positive reinforcement, negative punishment and rarely, and as a last resort, includes negative reinforcement and/or positive punishment”.
This is a reward such as a treat or vocal praise that, when given at the correct time after a response, increases the probability of that same behavioural response occurring again. For example if a dog is rewarded for sitting by being given a treat after being given its command of ‘sit’, then the dog will be more likely to repeat the same behaviour again when that command is again given.
To be the most effective with rewards, they have to be:
The withdrawal of a pleasant stimulus or event that leads to a decrease in a behaviour is considered a negative punishment. For example, placing a dog into a ‘naughty corner’, immediately after performing an unacceptable behaviour would be considered a negative punishment if it leads to a decrease in the unwanted behaviour.
This is often confused with punishment. It is something unpleasant or aversive that, when it is removed immediately after a response, increases the probability of that response recurring. For example, loosening a slip collar after a dog stops pulling on it, teaches the dog that it is less painful to walk to heel than to pull on the lead.
While reinforcement, either positive or negative, increases the probability of the preceding response occurring again, punishment is intended to have the opposite effect. It decreases the probability of the preceding response occurring again. Positive punishment is the addition of an adversive stimulus or event. For example, yelling at a dog or smacking would be considered a punishment only it if leads to a decrease in the behaviour.
Note – Positive punishment and negative reinforcement are also known in traditional training as ‘avoidance’ training methods.