Reinforcement

Reinforcement

the action or process of reinforcing or strengthening, in this case a behaviour.

Reinforcer

a stimulus, such as a reward, that maintains or strengthens a desired response.

Rewards

Why do we use food as a reinforcer, and not just praise?

We want to make it really easy and fun for the pups to learn – using a ‘primary reinforcer’ will help.

Primary reinforcer

is something that we need to survive – for example food – and we don’t need to form a positive association with it.

Secondary reinforcer

is something that we learn a (hopefully positive) association with, for example praise.   A secondary reinforcer is normally paired with a primary reinforcer to achieve its (positive) association; “good girl Dyfri” handing her the treat. 

Over time the food and the praise will become interchangeable, but for most dogs the food will still be of higher value than just the praise.

Other rewards, which we’ll look at towards the end of the course, include anything that the dog likes; games, a cuddle, a sniff, a walk…

YOUR PUP DOES NOT WORK FOR FREE AT THE MOMENT. 

EVERY GOOD BEHAVIOUR DESERVES A REWARD.  Try to have treats handy all the time to capture the good behaviour when it happens.