Reply To: Mary & Salu

Alana McGee

Smart Salu 😉

Are you asking when to “cue” the touch?

As he thinks of ‘touch’ as a nose target right now, consider using a different word.

Ideally the order of operations is cue, behavior, reward. Think of teaching a dog to sit. You say sit, and then luring them into the behavior or shape it, then reward.

If you are changing words in a behavior you insert the new one before the old cue. So for “sit” it would be something like “Bum down” “Sit” **Behavior happens** reward.

Give the soft paw a different word so he can differentiate it is a different specific behavior later that may require a higher standard of criteria for success (Eventually!)

If you start using the “soft paw” cue words while shaping, that is just fine. If you add it after you have achieved the soft paw it’ll be fine too.

We’d recommend you’d use the “soft paw” “touch” *slapping behavior happens* reward method as opposed to labeling a behavior once you already have it. It becomes part of the learning process this way and faster.

Again, over time you can refine the criteria and remove the “touch”in that above sequence so “touch” can mean any kind of touching the object with any body part, but “soft paw” ONLY means touching it gently with his foot.

Does that make sense?

  • This reply was modified 8 years, 6 months ago by Alana McGee.