Animal Behavior Training Pamphlet

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Anonymous

I am in process of putting together a pamphlet on animal training using positive reinforcement training methods and definitions. If anyone is interested in such an item, please E-Mail me for more information: Content, when available, and other information. Thanks, Bill.

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Anonymous

Dr. Temple Grandin of Colorado State U. is widely respected for her knowledge of animal behavior. She is also severely autistic, but managed to earn doctorates in Animal Sciences and Engineering. She wrote a book on autism, THINKING IN PICTURES, that has two chapters on animal behavior that are very perceptively written. Those two chapters are well worth a trip to the library.

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Anonymous

Thanks Mike for your information. I am familiar with Dr. Grandin's work and have several of her articles and other research publications of hers. She definitely did some pioneering work in qualifying and quantifying various aspects of bovine behavior and psychology. And, some of her illustraions and diagrams in her book(s) are very informative.

The "pamphlet" I was referring to was more of a synopsis, checklist, cookbook format based on some specific learning principles of all animal behavior as well as specifics on bovine applications. And, definitions of concepts used which have widespread application to a variety of animal subjects. My intent was directed more at the "newcomers" and others who are either not aware of specific university based research and works; or, who do not wish to delve into the intensity of such published works.

From my observations of individuals who "train" animals (e.g., "breaking" a horse rather than "starting" a horse; dragging a calf rather than using positive reinforcement to get them to lead; using aversive conditioning (e.g., hotshot and other methods), I feel that using proper methods to gain the respect, trust, and willingness to serve by the animals, it much better in the long run for all species of animals.



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Anonymous

Isn’t this somewhat off topic? This is supposed to be a ranching board.

Training animals is fine, but what happened to the good old days when ranching discussions centered around working cattle, fencing, grass, markets, etc.?

Seems to me we are starting to sound like a bunch of new age types that want to chant mantras and connect with a cow’s inner soul. I’m not planning on leaving the board, but sometimes it sure seems like the board is leaving me. I’m sticking with honest-to-goodness ranching; no plans to get into bovine pop psychology. And I’ll keep the gun rack in the back window, and skip the crystal hanging from the rearview.

OK, like I said, no offense meant. I just had to say something. Also, nothing against Grandin, as she has done some excellent work. Just seems like we're going a little far afield lately.

Craig-TX
 
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Anonymous

> Isn’t this somewhat off topic?
> This is supposed to be a ranching
> board.

Thanks Craig for your candid comments! No offense taken...lol. As to whether or not this is a "ranching" board, or cattle board, or whatever, there ARE some novice, naive people on the board's postings. Don't know what the percentage of old timers vs. middle-timers vs. totally new-timers there are among posters, but sure there are some of each.

"Pop Psychology" is what Ann Landers, Miss Manners, and Psychology Today magazine does. Everything people and other animals do is based on behavioral and cognitive psychology. We don't operate in a vacuum...everything around us is based on cause and effect.

And, there is more than one way to "skin a cat", "catch a greased pig", or train a horse or other livestock species. We all have our preferences (and successes/failures) on the methods we each use. One probably achieves more success at spanking your unruly or disobedient kid than hitting or shocking or (lengthy) tying up an unruly bovine or equine. Humans have considerably more brain cells to "interpret and deduce" things and events around them that other animal species do; thus you can verbally explain to a human why you are doing something--with animals, it is different--they seem to only understand cause and effect and remember the good and bad experiences...to their or our advantage or disadvantage.

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Anonymous

Hello,

I totally agree with you, positive reinforcement is a great tool for teaching, however I also believe swift disiplinary action is also a much needed tool for teaching. I believe in giving them an oportunity to do what I have asked in a reasonable amount of time, when the time is up, after balking ther is a swift disipline followed by another try. It is not a democracy there has to be a boss, once they accept that, everything works out just fine. There is respect for all involved.

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Anonymous

Very well put Michelle! Yes, swift "correction" (within 1 or 2 seconds of the problem behavior response) is definitely in order. Animals need to know what their limits are and what is expected of them, especially with humans.

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Anonymous

> Thanks Mike for your information.
> I am familiar with Dr. Grandin's
> work and have several of her
> articles and other research
> publications of hers. She
> definitely did some pioneering
> work in qualifying and quantifying
> various aspects of bovine behavior
> and psychology. And, some of her
> illustraions and diagrams in her
> book(s) are very informative.

> The "pamphlet" I was
> referring to was more of a
> synopsis, checklist, cookbook
> format based on some specific
> learning principles of all animal
> behavior as well as specifics on
> bovine applications. And,
> definitions of concepts used which
> have widespread application to a
> variety of animal subjects. My
> intent was directed more at the
> "newcomers" and others
> who are either not aware of
> specific university based research
> and works; or, who do not wish to
> delve into the intensity of such
> published works.

> From my observations of
> individuals who "train"
> animals (e.g.,
> "breaking" a horse
> rather than "starting" a
> horse; dragging a calf rather than
> using positive reinforcement to
> get them to lead; using aversive
> conditioning (e.g., hotshot and
> other methods), I feel that using
> proper methods to gain the
> respect, trust, and willingness to
> serve by the animals, it much
> better in the long run for all
> species of animals.

Besides that it is also easier on us humans.

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Anonymous

> Besides that it is also easier on
> us humans.

This sounds like a good idea for some of us to be able to learn more and try some of other peoples ideas. It might be a short version of learning from others experience. I would suggest you put a disclaimer in your pamplet to let your readers know that even the best tempered and smartest cattle can give you some of the hardest times and never be trained.



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