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  • Michael D’Abruzzo

    Administrator
    May 3, 2019 at 6:15 pm
    954

    Hi Daria,

    The reason you repeat the command with the punishment is to prep for off-leash training that uses punishment that is non-directional such as an ecollar or even a throw chain.  Most punishment for off-leash training will feel the same to the dog as opposed to leash punishment which usually will feel different to the dog for different commands (sit vs down vs heel etc). The leash corrections actually give a prompt to the dog to what they should be doing even if the dog completely did not notice what the original command was that they disobeyed.

    A dog that is punished with an ecollar will not get that luxury and can be left panicking or otherwise seem to be even more defiant while receiving a punishment that can technically mean dozens of different things to the dog.

    So if an ecollar will only mean one thing to the dog such as “come” or “stop what you are doing” or “run toward the middle of the yard” (invisible fence) it would not be a big deal since the dog only needs to know how to respond to the ecollar in one way.

    But, if a dog may need to respond to an ecollar in many different ways,  repeating the command at the EXACT moment the dog is punished lets the dog know what command it has disobeyed and what behavior to do in order to shut off the stim so the dog does not accidently choose the wrong behavior in the cases where the dog may have made a reasonable error.

    We do the same with leash punishment mostly to prep the dog to understand this concept.  Overall, it builds the dogs confidence and allows the dog to think more clearly if punished.

    We don’t give the command just before punishing because it would lengthen the time between the act of disobedience and when the dog was punished also it would confuse a dog that starts to obey the “second repeated command” and then is immediately punished. You don’t give the command immediately after the punishment because the dog could still be left confused during the actual punishment instead of immediately knowing what action will prevent a second punishment.

    Also, it is important that correct command structure is used to prevent “poisoned commands” .  Poisoned commands are when a dog shows a conditioned response to the INITIAL request of a command as if it was punished (flinching, lip smacking, etc).

    If the dog is conditioned correctly in phase 2 to always know that a command given AFTER their name is NEVER punished it prevents poisoned commands. Basically everything is done to help with confidence and focus , even after a dog makes a mistake or even willfully disobeys.

    Even you need further clarification let me know.