Louise’s Trick cont…
As I mentioned in a previous post, I decided to change Louise’s trick from teaching her to jump over an obstacle (ruler) to trying to get her to “beg” on her two hind feet at the word “up.” Since Louise stands up so much on her own, all I had to do was capture the behavior by clicking and feeding her as soon as both of her front feet left the ground. I also tried to coax her by holding a piece of food over her head. Thus, I often just gave her the food directly from my hand; however, I also intermittently delivered the food through the tube in the food corner.
I then began adding the “up” command on the very first day of training. I say “up” right before it looks (to me) like she’s about to stand on her hind feet. However, I’m often wrong in my assumption and end up saying it a bunch of time before she actually stands up. As of now, she still is not showing much response to the “up” command. I’m hoping if I just continue to do it over and over, she’ll eventually begin to stand up on command, but at this point I think she is just so interested in the food that I’m holding over her head that the “up” command has little salience. I’ll continue to work on not holding the food to coax her to stand up, and only reinforcing her through the tube in the food corner. We’ll see where that gets us!
Here is a brief video showing the different ways I reinforced Louise, as well as what the trick is supposed to look like!
I will continue to work with Louise as much as possible. However, Erika and I will be starting in on our experiment as soon as possible, so trick training time may be limited!
Entry filed under: Carly and Louise.