the Gold Coast's premier dog trainers

Beacon Dog Training Logo

Canine Behavioural Science

Canine Behavioural Science

Operant Conditioning Quadrants & Why Dogs Do Things

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Ever wondered “why does my dog jump on guests” or “why doesn’t my dog come when called”? If you boil scientific dog training down to it’s simplest elements, there are four scenarios that determine which behaviours your dog will keep doing, and which behaviours they’ll stop. These are known as the four quadrants of operant conditioning, and this is...

Read More
Canine Behavioural Science

How To Use Your Dog's Distractions As Rewards

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Many dog owners become frustrated with how their dog focuses on distractions rather than their humans. Rather than thinking of the things that your dog wants to get to as distractions try thinking of them as potential REINFORCERS. For example, let’s say that you have trouble getting your dog to come when called around birds, because your dog loves...

Read More
Canine Behavioural Science

What's A Reinforcer? Why Some Dogs Won't Work For Praise

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Many people struggle with positive reinforcement training because they don’t yet understand what a “reinforcer” really is. The golden rule of dog training is “all behaviour that gets reinforced gets repeated.” Simply put, a reinforcer is anything that a dog will work to get – not just something that they like.

Read More
Canine Behavioural Science

What Is A Clicker For?

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Have you ever wondered why trainers use those little clicking devices when working with animals? The “click” noise functions as something that trainers call a MARKER SIGNAL. A marker signal is a way of communicating with an animal to help training go as smoothly and efficiently as possible. It is a sound or visual signal that says to your dog “You...

Read More
Canine Behavioural Science

Why It's Important To Give Dogs Time To Think

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

“What’s the command for this?” is one of the most common questions that dog trainers hear from owners. There’s a big focus in the general dog owning public on using WORDS to control a dog. We humans use a verbal language as our primarily mode of communication, so it’s only natural that we instinctively use plenty of spoken cues when we’re trying to...

Read More
Canine Behavioural Science

Why Dogs Do Naughty Things When You're Not Looking

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

An issue that’s common amongst dog owners is when their dog seems to have learnt a rule, like “don’t knock over the rubbish bin,” but when left alone the dog breaks the rule, even though the owner thought they “knew it was wrong.” This problem is caused by the mistaken assumption that dogs, like humans, have a sense of “right” vs “wrong.” The real...

Read More