Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post Reply
gunning
Rank: Just A Pup
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2019 8:35 am

Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by gunning » Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:44 am

So I have been in the force fetch process for about 25 days. I did a lot of research on force fetch. I bought smart fetch read Tom Dokken’s book and watched a bunch of videos before starting. Things have been going fairly well and some of the common hold up’s that most people I read about I’ve had. Like the transition to ground took a little bit of work but he was getting it. My dog also reaches out for the stick or bumpers but was a little spongy, I wanted to see go after quicker. So I’ve got to thinking why not reward him with something other than just praising him if he gives me the behavior I’m looking for.

So I grabbed a handful of his food put it in my pocket before I started a session with him a few days ago. He knew I had the food in my pocket before we even started he could smell it. I put him up on the bench I could tell he was already locked in looking me in the eyes ready to go. The first time I said fetch he snatched it out of my hands and I rewarded him. He did that about 3 times in a row and when he didn’t grab it in about a second and a half he got the ear pinch until he up it in his mouth. Also his holding has become better I’m having to correct his head less he knows if he fetches it quick keeps his head up looks me in the eyes he’s going to get rewarded.

I know I’m going to have to ween him off the treats as we continue the process but what’s wrong with teaching him the fetch and hold command this way? All the other commands I’ve taught him has been with introducing him to the command with positive reinforcement to teach him the behavior once he understands what a command means and doesn’t comply he gets corrected and I’m not against correcting my dog. What’s wrong with the carrot and stick approach to force fetching


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Steve007
Rank: 4X Champion
Posts: 674
Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2007 12:14 pm
Location: St. Louis, MO

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by Steve007 » Fri Aug 23, 2019 9:13 am

Nothing at all, but many-- not all-- hunting, retrieving and bird-dog people are very very inflexible and slow to make changes.

When I first started in obedience many years ago, food was never used as a reinforcer or motivator. Today, it is almost universal and results are far better for many dogs. There are unknowledgeable people who think using food (or praise, for that matter) means the dog works for food or praise, and will not work without it. They are, of course, wrong, though continued praise is a good idea at times and generally automatic if you like your dog.

It is actually possible to train many dogs -- not all -- to retrieve effectively using only positive reinforcements. Individual dogs, of course, are motivated differently. But a combination such as you're doing is the right way to go.

polmaise
GDF Junkie
Posts: 2519
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:08 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by polmaise » Fri Aug 23, 2019 1:07 pm

Force Hold, Force Fetch , Force retrieve , Positive/Negative ...Reinforcement, Yada Yada ya.
.....
Often over thinking that a dog will comprehend like a Human would in any situation leads to many hypothesis.
Fido fetch a stick.
How you apply it in practice or repetition is often misunderstood by both Canine and Human . Usually taking the approach that if words used are nice and soft in explanation to another human , then that will be well received .
....
The Dog however can't speak. Mind your fingers !
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwrcNqB ... e=youtu.be

User avatar
crackerd
Rank: 5X Champion
Posts: 1057
Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 6:57 am

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by crackerd » Fri Aug 23, 2019 3:00 pm

gunning wrote:
Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:44 am
So I have been in the force fetch process for about 25 days. ... I know I’m going to have to ween him off the treats as we continue the process but what’s wrong with teaching him the fetch and hold command this way? All the other commands I’ve taught him has been with introducing him to the command with positive reinforcement to teach him the behavior once he understands what a command means and doesn’t comply he gets corrected and I’m not against correcting my dog. What’s wrong with the carrot and stick approach to force fetching?
What's wrong with the carrot and stick approach is, it ain't force fetching. If you're 25 days into it and citing "positive reinforcement" as you "continue the process," you're really not comprehending the "force" in force fetch. In short, a dog's appetite will never sour but in your case its attitude most likely will if you don't get through FF and the compulsion woven into it pretty soon.

The coup de grace for force fetching is a couple of exercises - "stick fetch" and "fetch/no-fetch" that are neither negative or positive (except for the lavishing of praise when the dog's successful with each endeavor). They just let you know that the dog "gets it" in bending to your will by retrieving on command via the compulsion training (force) applied. That's force applied, not treats dispensed to "help" the dog get it.

Also, "getting it" and "getting through it" doesn't mean that the dog will never, ever again need an ear pinch or e-collar nick reminder for dropping a bumper or bird - it just means that you can move ahead with the next steps of developing a working retriever that force fetch is foundation for: forcing to pile, T- (and TT-) drill, water forcing, swim-by that sequentially develop a working a/k/a "handling" retriever.

For our Polmaise's edification, force fetching ain't a work of art, or a science exactly, but more analogous to a good ol' All-American hamburger that you can savor without thinking too much ("overthinking") about what went into making it...

MG

gunning
Rank: Just A Pup
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2019 8:35 am

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by gunning » Fri Aug 23, 2019 5:15 pm

Force fetch, condition retrieves, trained retrieve isn’t it really just teaching a new command? I’ve taught my dog to have to obey all the other commands I’ve taught him sit means sit it’s not a request and if he doesn’t comply he’s going to get corrected. Why is fetch so different? I’m not against most force fetching methods they get results. I’m just questioning why I’m teaching my dog fetch with only using negative reinforcement when I’ve used reward based training to get my dog to understand a new command and then reinforce it with the e collar once he understands the command completely. Why is fetch any different than sit or here? Or is it the breaking of the dog really what force fetch is all about?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Trekmoor
GDF Junkie
Posts: 1889
Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2007 5:09 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by Trekmoor » Sat Aug 24, 2019 3:47 am

Along with most other British trainers, probably including Polmaise, I have never really understood the compulsion so many American trainers seem to have to F.F. gundogs. Like Robert (Polmaise) I rely on using a pups inclination to pick items up and move around with them in order to "build" a retrieve from scratch. I've always said that if I see a pup pick things up then I can ,eventually, develop that into a very willing retrieve.

Some pups are a doddle , they are "natural retrievers" but others may take as much as three months before I have a reliable and keen retriever. I don't train for any kind of steadiness and I don't train for a "fancy" delivery during that period . This gradually increases a pup's willingness to retrieve and the willingness brings speed and ,eventually, precision along with it.

The changeover from dummies (bumpers) to cold, dead game usually goes smoothly and so does the change from that to freshly shot game. I have had to go back to using encouragement when pups/ dogs are required to retrieve birds like, for example, woodcock, but once the pup has retrieved one or two it will usually become just as keen on retrieving them as it is keen on pheasants, partridge , grouse and snipe.

I accept ,although I do not fully understand, that in order to be a possible winner in American style field tests/trials , it is necessary to train F.F. - - - - but why bother with F.F. if you have no intention of having your lab fully capable of winning any trial ?

All of the gundog breeds in Britain that have to retrieve in our trials are expected to pick up and retrieve every and any of the several species of gamebird …..plus rabbits and hares. They are expected to do this both keenly and well and yet none of those dogs will have been F.F.'d …..in fact most of their trainers wouldn't know how to train it !

I have a feeling or a suspicion , that too many Americans have read too many or seen to many books and videos written and made
by Field trial trainers and have simply thought that they must train F.F. too if they want their dogs to retrieve ?

I am not trying to knock the "American way" here, I'm just saying that F.F. is not the only way to get a keen and reliable retriever.

I would use F.F. if I had to for I am not a "positive only" trainer but I don't have to because gundogs already have the beginnings of a retrieve instinct and along with everyone else on this side of the pond, I just build on that.

Bill T.
The older I get, the better I was !

User avatar
gonehuntin'
GDF Junkie
Posts: 4588
Joined: Tue Dec 12, 2006 5:38 pm
Location: NE WI.

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by gonehuntin' » Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:43 pm

Ahhh, the FF topic again. I think FF is changing a lot FOR THE AMATURE or non-competetive person. If I'm competing in AKC Fioeld Trials, the dog is going to ear pinched, stick fetched and ecollar fetched. He has to be for the complexity of the tests and training involved. For the Hunter, that just isn't so. If, once in a blue moon, the dog drops a bird and you have to pinch his ear or stuff it back in his mouth, so what? The FF process goes so much smoother, faster, and with less problems that a strictly pressure based FF. It still has to be bases on pressure but reinforced with treats is fine. Most Hunter want a dog that simply delivers the bird to hand but they still want a basic to fall back on should the dog not comply. I go in about a one to four ratio, pressure three times, reward once.

Just realize that when a dog is done like this it is not TRUELY ff'd, but the results are more than adequate for the average Hunter. The reward based training is a boon for the German Dogs which were like FFing the Devil in the traditional system. I am a big proponent of this type of FF for the Hunter and I think in time and if anyone ever comes out with a good video on it, it will be exceedingly popular. It definitely has it's place.
LIFE WITHOUT BIRD DOGS AND FLY RODS REALLY ISN'T LIFE AT ALL.

Steve007
Rank: 4X Champion
Posts: 674
Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2007 12:14 pm
Location: St. Louis, MO

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by Steve007 » Sun Aug 25, 2019 3:16 pm

gonehuntin' wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:43 pm
If I'm competing in AKC Fioeld Trials, the dog is going to ear pinched, stick fetched and ecollar fetched. He has to be for the complexity of the tests and training involved.
What kind of pointing dog AKC field trials are you in where the dog has to retrieve? Other than a call back, perhaps, for a GWP national championship or a water test for a versatile dog?

Your contention that a dog taught with a system where rewards are part of the trained retrieve process is not as reliable as a dog that has been pressure-based only is entirely false, though self-evidently, it depends on the dog. As mentioned above, many -- not all-- bird dog people (FT retriever trainers may be different) are antediluvian in their training techniques.

In point of fact, if your training knowledge were more broad, you would realize that there are a ton of dogs taught with all or partial rewards that retrieve very reliably outside the bird field under distractions that many bird dogs could not handle. Again, self-evidently (to most people), it depends on the dog, but your intransigent viewpoint is wholly incorrect, with the possible exception of FT retrievers, where professional trainers don't know or try any other way, and perhaps cannot afford to.
Last edited by Steve007 on Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
gonehuntin'
GDF Junkie
Posts: 4588
Joined: Tue Dec 12, 2006 5:38 pm
Location: NE WI.

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by gonehuntin' » Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:01 pm

Steve007 wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 3:16 pm
gonehuntin' wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:43 pm
If I'm competing in AKC Fioeld Trials, the dog is going to ear pinched, stick fetched and ecollar fetched. He has to be for the complexity of the tests and training involved.
What kind of pointing dog AKC field trials are you in where the dog has to retrieve? Other than a call back, perhaps, for a GWP national championship?

And your contention that a dog taught with a system where rewards are part of the trained retrieve process is not as reliable as a dog that has been pressure-based only is entirely false, though self-evidently, it depends on the dog. As mentioned above, many -- not all-- bird dog people (FT retriever trainers may be different) are antediluvian in their training techniques.

In point of fact, if your training knowledge were more broad, you would realize that there are a ton of dogs taught with all or partial rewards that retrieve very reliably outside the bird field under distractions that many bird dogs could not handle. Self-evidently (to most people), it depends on the dog, but your intransigent viewpoint is wholly incorrect, with the possible exception of FT retrievers, where professional trainers don't know or try any other way, and perhaps cannot afford to.
No pointing dog trials. AKC retriever trials.

Pointing dog, retriever spaniel; doesn't matter, my statement stands and is backed up by nearly every pro in the country.
LIFE WITHOUT BIRD DOGS AND FLY RODS REALLY ISN'T LIFE AT ALL.

User avatar
crackerd
Rank: 5X Champion
Posts: 1057
Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 6:57 am

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by crackerd » Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:45 pm

Agree as usual with GH on force fetching - for all gundog breeds. Just wrapped up the proceedings today overlaying the e-collar with a black dog (best FF candidate ever invented) whose five-gen. pedigree only has 112 FCs, and relished 99.4% of imparting it to a pup (of my own) for the first time in eight years. From ear pinch to stick fetch to fetch/no fetch to e-collar "Fetch!"-nick-" Fetch!" overlay took 9 and 1/96th days (the 15 minutes-1/96th day being her original "bedtime" ear pinch story to cogitate over regarding force in the days ahead).

Pup is 5+ months old. Training groups (plural) that I'm in have, or have had, 3-4 pups whose owners initially went for the kinder, gentler way promoted by a somewhat laid-back, articulate and talented retriever pro whose methods are, as GH noted, plenty good enough for hunters. But, as relied on by an amateur retriever trialer, seems invariably to make for a redo with the "old school" FF brought in from the bullpen to save a competitive retriever's career before it even started. Retriever training is a contact sport competitively - the force being the contact along with a heeling stick and on occasion a little nip from the handler to a dog's jowl for better "compliance." But for a hunter the softer, more encouraging and less forceful way can work a charm. But by my measure just carry enough clout (force) to do what I need and don't need from FF - which is having to nag or behave worse toward the dog maybe for much of its lifetime because "the hard part" wasn't inculcated in such way that the dog couldn't tell if it had been really force-fetched at all...

MG

polmaise
GDF Junkie
Posts: 2519
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:08 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by polmaise » Mon Aug 26, 2019 11:28 am

gunning wrote:
Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:44 am
So I have been in the force fetch process for about 25 days. I did a lot of research on force fetch. I bought smart fetch read Tom Dokken’s book and watched a bunch of videos before starting. Things have been going fairly well and some of the common hold up’s that most people I read about I’ve had. Like the transition to ground took a little bit of work but he was getting it. My dog also reaches out for the stick or bumpers but was a little spongy, I wanted to see go after quicker. So I’ve got to thinking why not reward him with something other than just praising him if he gives me the behavior I’m looking for.

So I grabbed a handful of his food put it in my pocket before I started a session with him a few days ago. He knew I had the food in my pocket before we even started he could smell it. I put him up on the bench I could tell he was already locked in looking me in the eyes ready to go. The first time I said fetch he snatched it out of my hands and I rewarded him. He did that about 3 times in a row and when he didn’t grab it in about a second and a half he got the ear pinch until he up it in his mouth. Also his holding has become better I’m having to correct his head less he knows if he fetches it quick keeps his head up looks me in the eyes he’s going to get rewarded.

I know I’m going to have to ween him off the treats as we continue the process but what’s wrong with teaching him the fetch and hold command this way? All the other commands I’ve taught him has been with introducing him to the command with positive reinforcement to teach him the behavior once he understands what a command means and doesn’t comply he gets corrected and I’m not against correcting my dog. What’s wrong with the carrot and stick approach to force fetching


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
You either follow the program or get out of the program .

User avatar
crackerd
Rank: 5X Champion
Posts: 1057
Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 6:57 am

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by crackerd » Mon Aug 26, 2019 12:20 pm

polmaise wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 11:28 am
gunning wrote:
Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:44 am
So I have been in the force fetch process for about 25 days. I did a lot of research on force fetch. I bought smart fetch read Tom Dokken’s book and watched a bunch of videos before starting. Things have been going fairly well and some of the common hold up’s that most people I read about I’ve had. Like the transition to ground took a little bit of work but he was getting it. My dog also reaches out for the stick or bumpers but was a little spongy, I wanted to see go after quicker. So I’ve got to thinking why not reward him with something other than just praising him if he gives me the behavior I’m looking for.

So I grabbed a handful of his food put it in my pocket before I started a session with him a few days ago. He knew I had the food in my pocket before we even started he could smell it. I put him up on the bench I could tell he was already locked in looking me in the eyes ready to go. The first time I said fetch he snatched it out of my hands and I rewarded him. He did that about 3 times in a row and when he didn’t grab it in about a second and a half he got the ear pinch until he up it in his mouth. Also his holding has become better I’m having to correct his head less he knows if he fetches it quick keeps his head up looks me in the eyes he’s going to get rewarded.

I know I’m going to have to ween him off the treats as we continue the process but what’s wrong with teaching him the fetch and hold command this way? All the other commands I’ve taught him has been with introducing him to the command with positive reinforcement to teach him the behavior once he understands what a command means and doesn’t comply he gets corrected and I’m not against correcting my dog. What’s wrong with the carrot and stick approach to force fetching
You either follow the program or get out of the program .
Robt., no offense to gunning, but sounds like a case of being a little bit pregnant by several programmes.

Might need to check into a home for unwed programmes to get this sorted through retriever training programme DNA!

MG

polmaise
GDF Junkie
Posts: 2519
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:08 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Force fetch with positive and negative reinforcement

Post by polmaise » Mon Aug 26, 2019 12:50 pm

Often ,,,, the internet is Not one's best Port of call.
Neither is a book (To Be perfectly honest) .Even more confusing can be a forum , especially if you are attempting to re-invent a wheel that is Not round, but kinda looks like it is round with edges on it.
........
We have a currency over here ,the Pound £ . They changed that little coin from being round , to have corners on it . They said it was because it would stop counterfeit or copy ?
We had more counterfeits than ever before ,when that change was made,now we don't know what is real and what is fake no more . Michael.

Post Reply