Tuesday Tip: Algebra

A high rate of reinforcement is being used while Archer and Bernie wait their turn to train.

If you’re like me, algebra was already your worst nemesis in school. And than the teacher would inevitably say something like “You can’t use a calculator, you won’t have one all the time in real life.” Do you remember that feeling of frustration? You could solve the problem with ease if only you had that extra little help, and when are you going to need to do this kind of math anyway? What’s the point?

That’s how your dog feels when you make him repeat the same behavior over and over again, with no reinforcement and no guidance, and “no calculator.”

When working with your dog keep in mind that most of what we teach them seems about as necessary to them as algebra does to us. So if we take away that reinforcement, if we get frustrated with them, if we don’t guide them to the “correct answer,” working with you becomes like sitting in that classroom, feeling frustrated and hopeless.

Make sure your dog has everything they need to solve the problem, and remember to keep it fun for you both!