Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Perils Of Clicker Training

I have written several articles here and elsewhere regarding the Theory of Operant Conditioning. I have said it is an obsolete theory, especially when applied as Clicker Training. The reason I say it is obsolete is because it is incomplete regarding the spectrum of learning and modification of animal behavior. The theory ignores the emergent properties of behavior, especially regarding higher life forms such as mammals. A few years back, we saw a killer whale kill one of the trainers. No one, except maybe me, questioned the training methods being used on these big sea mammals. Maybe there's something wrong with the theory... but instead I got attacked. I have said the same numerous times regarding the negative effects of clicker training on some dogs. And I've been attacked on that, as well. 

Here is another example... 

A female zookeeper was recently killed by one of their elephants. Previous reports had said, "Jumbo is responding well to her operant conditioning and protected care management. The program allows keepers to manage her through a protected wall, and is based solely on positive feedback. She is responding well by presenting feet for care, all parts of her body for washing, rub downs and other health care procedures." Hmm... Someone dies, yet no one is asking about the methods being used. Yes, the article mentions this elephant had a rough prior history. But, even so, this woman is now dead and no one is questioning the methods used to manage this elephant.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Who Kills 23 Puppies?

Two men apparently killed 23 puppies in a commando style raid. Why they did this, I have no idea. But it is sick, and I hope they get locked away for a very long time.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Free Roaming Dog Stabbed 5 Times And Dies

My belief is that one out of every thousand people you meet are absolutely nuts. Because of that belief, I don't think it is ever wise to let your dog roam free in your neighborhood. All it takes is the chance encounter between your dog and that nutcase, and your dog will be found dead. That is what I believe happened in this case. Please... KEEP YOUR DOGS ON YOUR PROPERTY!!!!

Condo Association In Big Trouble

The condo association where a depressed man lives has apparently denied him the ability to keep a service dog in his unit. This is not a small matter. Things like this can cost the association a LOT of money. Regardless of what you think about this kind of thing, I think you are stupid to fight these regulations in this way. You will lose. Either change the law, or abide by the law. If you think you are abiding by the law by denying the dog, then prepare for a major battle. This kind of thing could bankrupt the entire association. If I had been asked, I would have told them to allow the dog. In fact, I'd allow dogs, period. Now, there's going to be hell to pay.

Friday, April 06, 2012

Update On Husky That Killed Baby

The headline to the article says: Fatal baby mauling: Dog might have seen 'squeak toy,' expert says

I highly doubt this was the cause of the attack. I am more persuaded that the dog wasn't well.

A dog that isn't well will do things to defend itself, and it will have lowered thresholds for all other types of aggression. This, to me, appears to be a case of animal neglect that went terribly wrong. Dogs don't see kids as squeaky toys... they are more aware than that. If the dog is now well, and well fed, and is acting normally, then I wouldn't put the dog down. I wouldn't put the dog unsupervised with babies again, but I wouldn't do that with ANY dog.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Dozens Of Fighting Pit Bulls To Be Killed

They don't have the volunteers or resources to deal with turning these dogs around, so they kill them. They also kill them so that the dogs aren't adopted and put into fights again. 

This is what criminals cause. The deaths of a lot of dogs.