Petminded's Catalog of Dog Training Terms


Ever read an article about caring for and training your dog and come across a term you don't quite understand? We've created this catalog of Dog Training terms so you never have to wonder again!

Aversive Stimulus: An individual's negative perception of a stimulus.

Behavioral Enrichment: Species-appropriate challenges, opportunities, and stimulation.

Classical Conditioning: A learning theory based on making associations between 2 stimuli that are repeatedly paired to produce a behavioral response.

Clicker: a device that makes a distinct "click" used as a secondary reinforcer to mark the desired behavior.

Counter Conditioning: A form of classical conditioning where new behavior is replaces a previous (usually undesirable) one.

(Systematic) Desensitization: The process of gradually introducing a dog to something they are afraid of at very low intensity in order to decrease their fearful response to it.

Environment: An individual's surroundings.

Force Free Dog Training: This is a method of dog training that doesn't use aversive methods to teach your dog what to do or not do.

Negative Punishment (P-): The removal of a stimulus to decrease the likelihood of a behavior.

Negative Reinforcement (R-): The removal of a stimulus to increase the likelihood of a behavior. The stimulus is often something unpleasant to the dog.

Operant Conditioning: A learning theory that predicts the probability of a behavioral response will increase or decrease depending on the consequences of that behavior.

Positive Punishment (P+): The addition of a stimulus to decrease the likelihood of a behavior.

Positive Reinforcement/ R+: The addition of a stimulus to increase the likelihood of a behavior.

Response: How an animal behaves or reacts to something (e.g. a stimulus)

Socialization: The act of interacting with others.

Stimulus (also see Response): A change or a signal in an individual's body or environment that

Trigger: IRefers to something that causes an overwhelming and often significant response in your dog. The response tends to happen very quickly.

Dog Science Experts
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