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I have been working with Atka on "Look At That" from Control unleashed. It is a great tool and I find she is looking more at me than at "that" which is the object.

I have been taking her to the Town Park and training her. There are people, dogs, bikes, skate board area, tennis area, basketball area, several base ball fields, and a Foot ball field. There is a path around the perimeter and a stream along one side as well as a kiddy play ground.

Baseball has started. Atka LOVES little kids and some of the baseball areas are for really young children. So.. we train and then we go to the baseball fields and watch.. spending some time at each one. The kids use Aluminum bats which make a cool noise when they connect. We also go and watch the Skate boarders.

Since Atka loves kids, we do a lot of "look at THAT" watching everyone. As this has progressed she has shown TERMEDOUS improvement in her atentiveness...

But.. she LOVES the sound of the bat connecting and the sound of the skate boards.

Look at that has segued into her watching and listening and when something she thinks is WAY cool happens, she will turn and look at me as if to say, "did you SEE THAT???" It is very different behavior from the "look at That" where she just diverts her attention and ignores the distraction. "Did you SEE that" is accompanied by an open mouth, tail wagging and sometimes a bark... and I am starting to realize my smart dog has turned the table on me as she trains me with "did you SEE that!??"

Now if she could only get the hang of the clicker and chocolate chips, she might get me completely trained by the end of summer. :p
 

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Look at that has segued into her watching and listening and when something she thinks is WAY cool happens, she will turn and look at me as if to say, "did you SEE THAT???" It is very different behavior from the "look at That" where she just diverts her attention and ignores the distraction. "Did you SEE that" is accompanied by an open mouth, tail wagging and sometimes a bark... and I am starting to realize my smart dog has turned the table on me as she trains me with "did you SEE that!??"

Now if she could only get the hang of the clicker and chocolate chips, she might get me completely trained by the end of summer. :p
That's the way the endpoint of the game is supposed to work! The whole idea is to make the default response of something new happening to instantly look back at you. You've premacked it enough that the actual action of looking back at you itself is rewarding, so she is enjoying the game in and of itself without the normal reward at the end.

Nice work, I wish I could get Rocky anywhere near that!
 

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Rocky has his mind on.. uhhh... "other things" if I recall a post by you last winter... :p

(Sorry.... well, not REAL sorry.. just being "polite...")
 

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I've read about that game - is it just as simple as clicking for the dog looking at whatever? Does it have to be something he's reactive too? (because there's not always dogs around when we go walking, etc).

Can I do it for when he hears a sound and he looks in the direction of it as well? The game seemed oriented around physical objects - but a lot of times a sound can get him anxious.
 

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With Look At THAT you click and reward the instant the dog looks back at you. Timing is critical.

At first you do it every time the dog looks at you... and eventually the dog will look at you more than "it." At some point the dog looks at you when something new happens.. and that is where the tipping point is and the dog is saying, "did you SEE that??"

It all started working much better for me when I started to keep the Spam in my mouth and I started spitting the food at her. This made looking at my face a LOT more fun (hey.. some of us got it and then there is everyone else!).
 

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Ah - okay, I get it now.

Will have to do this next time for a walk
 

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Actually you don't click when the dog looks at YOU. You click when it Looks at the Thing.
Kali my ten month old lab/husky is afraid of kids, inparticular, my neighbor's 11 year old son who adores her. So I started clicking her for looking at him when we were really far away, and slowly we got closer and closer.
 

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With Look At THAT you click and reward the instant the dog looks back at you. Timing is critical.
I'm about 95% sure you don't click when your dog looks back at you. You click the nanosecond the look AWAY from you at something interesting. You are creating "look at that thing" as a behaviour that can be cashed in for reward.

Clicking and treating when they look back at you doesn't do this, it only creates a dog that is highly motivated to ignore everything else in favor of you. This isn't in itself a bad thing, but for highly vigilant dogs (like Rocky), teaching "look at that" as a behaviour is MUCH more effective. His sequence of events goes from "look at dog, run towards dog" to "look at dog, look back for treat". If you click and treat your dog for looking AT YOU, your dogs sequence of events will eventually be "look at mom. look at mom. look at mom". For vigilant dogs this can be very stressful.

And yes, I took this straight out of CU. :p
 

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Boy, I'm going to have to try this with Donatello.

He's a very alert dog, and loves watching people, and loves watching everything. That's why he enjoys car rides, he can sit in my lap sometimes and be so content just watching everything that goes by; sometimes his ears will perk up, sometimes he'll cower like he saw something or someone that reminds him of fear.

He'd probably really enjoy "looking at" things that I find interesting.
 

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I love the look at that game. The idea is that you click when they look at whatever, but they are actually recieving the treat while they are looking at you because when they hear the click they will look at you.
 

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Mmmm chocolate chips, eh? What do you think she has planned for your next trip? :p

I love the look at that game. The idea is that you click when they look at whatever, but they are actually recieving the treat while they are looking at you because when they hear the click they will look at you.
Not exactly...in concept anyway.

The idea is to teach the dog that something new/stimulating/exciting etc. is the antecedent, looking at it is the behavior, and the consequence is a reward. Whether the dog looks at you when you give the treat is irrelevant...otherwise you would be holding out on giving the treat until the dog looks at you. I don't know about you, but my dogs are quite capable of accepting food while focusing on something other than me, lol.

Clicking the instant the dog looks at you is the "traditional" shaping method of teaching a solid watch, but is not the same as the "look at THAT!" game in which the dog is rewarded the instant s/he looks at environmental stimuli.

It seems somewhat counterintuitive, but the best way I have of explaining it is that the behavior marker occurs the instant the dog sees the object...before any reaction is triggered. For a dog with a strong clicker association (or whatever marker you choose), the click interrupts whatever behavior chain would have surfaced as a result of the stimulus and instead creates a positive association with simply viewing the stimulus...because he hasn't had time to do anything BUT view it. With repetition, generalization, and fading of the marker, simply seeing a new thing becomes associated with the possibility of reward.

Basically you are desensitizing your dog and putting the very act of desensitization on cue.
 

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Oh - so I was doing it right then?

What I do is this:

We're walking.

Wally looks at a person in the distance. C/T

Wally hears a sound and looks in the direction it came from. C/T

Wally sees a dog walking down the other sidewalk and looks at him. C/T

We're sitting somewhere - he looks at a person walking by. C/T.

Is this correct - or should I click when he stops looking at the whatever?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Mmmm chocolate chips, eh? What do you think she has planned for your next trip? :p



Not exactly...in concept anyway.

The idea is to teach the dog that something new/stimulating/exciting etc. is the antecedent, looking at it is the behavior, and the consequence is a reward. Whether the dog looks at you when you give the treat is irrelevant...otherwise you would be holding out on giving the treat until the dog looks at you. I don't know about you, but my dogs are quite capable of accepting food while focusing on something other than me, lol.

Clicking the instant the dog looks at you is the "traditional" shaping method of teaching a solid watch, but is not the same as the "look at THAT!" game in which the dog is rewarded the instant s/he looks at environmental stimuli.

It seems somewhat counterintuitive, but the best way I have of explaining it is that the behavior marker occurs the instant the dog sees the object...before any reaction is triggered. For a dog with a strong clicker association (or whatever marker you choose), the click interrupts whatever behavior chain would have surfaced as a result of the stimulus and instead creates a positive association with simply viewing the stimulus...because he hasn't had time to do anything BUT view it. With repetition, generalization, and fading of the marker, simply seeing a new thing becomes associated with the possibility of reward.

Basically you are desensitizing your dog and putting the very act of desensitization on cue.
This is the best explanation of this game I have ever heard. It is WAY better than the book.

I too was doing it wrong.. but that is not the point.. because somehow my DOG was doing it right.

I keep saying she is training me.... LOL
 

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The "look at that" game is fantastic. It has helped SOO much with Libby's enthusiasm for greeting EVERY dog and person that we would meet. It is also really helping for our CGC class.

Shaina, I too agree that your explanation is better than the book's!
 

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Whether the dog looks at you when you give the treat is irrelevant...otherwise you would be holding out on giving the treat until the dog looks at you. I don't know about you, but my dogs are quite capable of accepting food while focusing on something other than me, lol.
This is good to know. I have to remember that it's okay for him to still keep looking at whatever it is. It threw me off because usually he gives himself whiplash when he hears the click (either to look at me or where the food is lying on the floor) so when he didn't give me that "OMG LOL DA CLICK DA CLICK!" reaction I wondered if he'd gotten too stressed.

Nope - I had to hold the treat up to his mouth for him to get it - but when he realized it was there - he ate it like it was normal :eek: :D

I'm guessing that's a bit of a breakthrough for him in and of itself.
 

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Thanks :eek: I'm glad it helped.

KBLover- That's good to hear :) at least if he's still "there" enough to accept food you have a way in and can expand on that. Good luck!


Elana does Atka have any plans to enter you in obedience competitions this year? What venues are you registered in? :p
 

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Is this a setback or was he just too interested in the scent?

We saw a dog laying down near his handler and we sat down about, I guess 20 feet or so away.

Wally wasn't scared, but he wouldn't take a treat. I clicked when he looked alert at the dog - and then again when he started sniffing the air in the direction of the dog. He then stretched his neck out to sniff some more. Each time I clicked - but he wouldn't take his treat.

Never did he get anxious - but I wonder why he didn't take the food? Was he just too interested in the scent he was getting (assuming he could smell the dog? I mean I know their sense of smell is good, but smelling something from 20-30 feet away?)

I ended up just clicking and saying "good boy" and softly stroking his back.
 
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