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Does your dog want to please you?

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by McKenzie, Oct 10, 2013.


  1. McKenzie

    McKenzie PetForums VIP

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    As the title says really.

    I frequently meet other dog owners who believe that their dog should do something 'because they said so' or because dogs want to please people. I think there's a sort of belief that treats/rewards are for training puppies and once they're 'trained' the dog doesn't need to be rewarded anymore (or that a pat and 'good dog' is enough).

    I'm sure for some dogs this is true, but it certainly isn't for mine. I think Kenzie has very little desire to please me - she's in this life to look out for number 1 :rolleyes: We've got a very strong bond so it's not anything to do with that, it's just how she is.

    Is your dog a pleaser, or just looking out for themselves like Kenzie?

    Oh and tell us the breed (if it's not obvious) - I think it might be quite telling :) Kenzie, of course, is a terrorist :rolleyes:
     
  2. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    Mine are generally out to please me, but then it's part of what they were bred to do, and it's in the breed standard. Indie's different, she doesn't count as she isn't a real dog, she's a human in a dog coat!
     
  3. dandogman

    dandogman PetForums VIP

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    Pippa is definitely a dog that wants to please... but that's been bred into Labradors (especially working strain) for many generations.

    Molly on the other hand is a terrier so just wants to do as she pleases! Although that could be because she's turning into a teenager....
     
  4. Huskybob

    Huskybob PetForums Member

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    Ours don't, at all.

    Broder - Commands are followed if he feels like it or there is something in it for him, otherwise a command is more of a rule he is liable to break if not enforced, mostly with him you have to just remind him to keep himself in check :p

    Kindra - Will do do anything she knows to do if there is food or even the expectation of food but it is all about the food.

    Yla - She's a bit young for me to say for sure yet :)
     
  5. TangoTerrierist

    TangoTerrierist PetForums Junior

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    My dog is a real motley mutt, but very terrier in behaviour. I have a strong bond with her but does she do things to 'please me' - not on your nelly! I don't think I will ever be able to stop using treats and toy rewards with her. I have had a few comments from other dog owners along the lines of 'you know she is only doing xxxxx behaviour because you give her a treat?'. Well, yes I do realise that, but if she does the behaviour I ask of her, does it really matter? This is often said by people whose own dogs are completely out of control I hasten to add!
     
  6. sezeelson

    sezeelson PetForums VIP

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    In other words biddable?

    Terriers and breeds bred to work independently are known to be less biddable then those bred to work along side us such as retrievers and collies.

    Raven is very biddable, she is a bit dumb bless her but will please where she can!

    Rossi is much less biddable and has a more 'what's in it for me' attitude. This is where clicker training and free shaping has really brought out a new side to him and I've managed to get him offering behaviours :)

    Runa is a quick learner and like most pups is a pleaser! Hopefully she stays that way :thumbup:
     
  7. McKenzie

    McKenzie PetForums VIP

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    It's a fine line isn't it. Kenzie is very quick to find behaviours that will get her treats. She learnt that swap gets her a treat, and she learnt that I don't want her chewing stones funnily enough). Put them together and I have a dog that picks up little stones and plays with them in her mouth until I notice and 'swap' it. She's not stupid - if I don't have a treat, she doesn't spit it out!
     
  8. CockersIndie

    CockersIndie PetForums VIP

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    Indie lives for food.

    She loves her cuddles and attention, but I think she works for food rather than a pat on the head!
     
  9. McKenzie

    McKenzie PetForums VIP

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    I guess it's biddable, although that makes me think more of a training situation.

    My dad's old GR was very much a people pleaser - e.g. in the house if you said 'Ella come here' she'd plod over to you. If I say 'Kenzie come here' she'll look at me, suss out if I've got something she wants, think about it for a minute, and then either come or not depending on how she feels. This makes it sound like she's not trained at all, whereas she's actually very obedient - but only if she wants to be!
     
  10. Tacey

    Tacey PetForums Senior

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    April seems to love to please! She'll perform any of her tricks without a reward. She'll even learn new tricks without me rewarding her - I just say "yes!" or "good girl!" and she knows she's doing it correctly. I do normally reward her with her tennis ball or something anyway because I want her to have a lot of fun, but my attention is enough. :)
     
  11. babycham2002

    babycham2002 PetForums VIP

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    Percy has absolutely no interest in pleasing anyone but himself, even getting his Bronze good citizen was very very hard work. Percy is a Chinese Crested

    Willow works for food and praise and I suppose because she enjoys it. Another retriever of course so she is bred to be somewhat biddable

    Dillon my youngest Chinese Crested is a star player, he loves clicker training and I do think he somewhat wants to please as he has such fun doing it and spending quality time with me. He has his Gold Good citizen award (as does Willow)
     
    #11 babycham2002, Oct 10, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2013
  12. labradrk

    labradrk PetForums VIP

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    Dexie is very biddable and eager.

    Tilly, not really. She's very very needy and affectionate, but she has no desire to do anything obedience wise unless there is food or a toy involved.

    Bo is eager to please herself. She's as smart as a whip and probably the most intelligent dog I have ever owned, however her priority is pleasing herself. She'll happily work for me but only if there is food involved or it's a self rewarding behaviour - for example casting her off in one direction to hunt.
     
  13. Bryxy

    Bryxy PetForums Senior

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    I very much doubt either of mine do what I ask because they want to please me but regardless of the real reason they still respond.

    I only ever use treats early on in training something new, as soon as they've got the idea (which for George is pretty quick, Roxy a bit longer :eek:) then I just reward them with some fuss. George sometimes didn't need treats at all to figure out what I was asking, when I tried him out on the seesaw I just asked 'up' and motioned towards it and he got the idea right away, wasn't even unnerved when the balance tipped! I found he was easier to train when food wasn't involved, he was always more focused on what I was asking rather than on how to get the treat out my hand. I used more treats with Roxy but again teaching her tricks like 'paw' were done without treats and just lots of fuss. I've never had them stop responding except for when George went deaf and now I use hand signals to ask him simple things like 'come here'. :)

    George is a GSD/Border Collie and Roxy is a GSD/Jack Russell.
     
  14. LGD

    LGD PetForums Junior

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    Dylan the Chihuahua doesn't want to please, he does as he wants, listens when he wants and does 'naughty' things. Stealing socks is his new thing, I find it hilarious though :biggrin:
     
  15. myshkin

    myshkin PetForums VIP

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    Gruff, collie, lives to please. It really is a case of whatever makes us happy, makes him happy. That's not to say we always know how to communicate what we want to him! :) I use treats, although they aren't that much of a treat for him, they are prescription kibble, and he isn't very food orientated. But they work with Gruff as a way to let him know he's got it right. Reward isn't the same as bribery to me.

    Minnie is a jack russell, and sounds a lot like Kenzie! :D She's certainly bright, and loves her training sessions, indoors and on walks, but she definitely feels no need to please me! Wee blighter is going to give me hell when she hits adolescence, isn't she? :laugh:
     
  16. bearcub

    bearcub PetForums VIP

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    There are flashes of biddableness (is that a word?) in Florence and recently she has started working for a fuss rather than a treat. However if something interests her more than me, like cow poo :rolleyes: all of this goes out the window. Florence is a Labrador.

    Freya is a Collie x, but mostly Collie as far as we know and is always eager to please us. I never really have to repeat the same command twice where as with Florence sometimes it can be three or four times before she drags herself away from what she's doing.
     
  17. tinaK

    tinaK PetForums VIP

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    Yes Clover lives to please me. Daisy isn't so fussed lol
     
  18. springerpete

    springerpete PetForums VIP

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    I like to think so, But then what we do together, whether it be work or just a run out, is what they love to do, and I'm the one that facilitates it for them so I guess it's a mutually beneficial arrangement.
     
  19. Genie

    Genie PetForums Member

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    Kenzie sounds exactly like my mam's westie! Looks, assesses what's in it for her.

    My Izzy, a far border collie, does live to please us. She has lost her 'ear' for me for the most part, but listens to my OH implicitly. When she does something good, or we call her over, you can see the happiness in her face. She loves being in group cuddles too lol
     
  20. ozrex

    ozrex PetForums VIP

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    Rex (mostly GSD) will work happily and eagerly for a word of praise and watches me intently to see what I want.

    Tess (lab x poodle) is exactly as you've described Kenzie. She's MUCH quicker to learn than Rex but she learns what she wants to know (and at warp speed for food). She most emphatically works best when I have something yummy in my pocket.
     
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