Aversive Training Techniques
We touched on this yesterday, but lets dive into them a bit deeper. Aversive techniques include; prong collars, shock collars, spray bottles, pet corrector spray and many more. You are teaching your dog not to display a behaviour to avoid pain/something uncomfortable. Now many people will tell you, oh the prong collar doesn't hurt my dog...well it must, otherwise it wouldn't work?
People like aversives because they provide quick results.
Lets use a human example, and say you are scared of dogs. Then every time you see a dog and you feel frightened, your friend gives you a slap and tells you not to be silly. Are you no longer frightened of dogs? Or are you now pretending you are okay, but inside you are still terrified with the added stress of the fact you might get a slap if you show this?
So your dog pulls on the lead, put a prong collar on and off we go - he is walking nicely to avoid the pain on his neck. He still WANTS to pull, that need is still there, and if you took the collar off then he probably still would.
If your dog trainer relies on aversives, they are ignoring the most recent advances in behavioural science and are possibly too lazy to take advantage of more effective and humane training methods and tools. Imagine starting a new job and only being told what NOT to do. You wouldn’t learn how to do your job very quickly, if at all?
Animal trainers across the globe who work with large non-domesticated animals don't rely on aversives? You don't see a whale with a shock collar on? Or a Sea Lion wearing a prong collar? If trainers can teach complex behaviours to these animals using positive reinforcement tools and methods, then we definitely can too with our dogs.