Giving Treats: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly - Page 11 - The Horse Forum
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post #101 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 05:11 PM Thread Starter
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Heck Mr. Mule, I thought everybody knew that. Don't you ever watch YouTube? If ya wanna finish your cheese burger, better keep it away from Patches.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BHYLcNSZM9o

Harold. Retired, W7HC
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post #102 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 05:26 PM Thread Starter
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In defense of Smilie, though I doubt she needs it. If I were a professional horse trainer, training horses for others or horses that would likely be sold, I doubt I would even consider giving or using hand fed treats.

I took Hondo on daily walks looking for hidden dishes of pellets hidden along the trail for almost three months before I gave him a treat by hand. I had begun to know him pretty well by then and he me. Well, he probably knew me a lot sooner than I knew him.

All this back and forth is really educational, for me at least.

I wonder if loosie is dreaming about this thread in her dreams? :)
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post #103 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 09:07 PM
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Smilie is right, there is not a trainer I know that condones handfeeding treats. However, we get to know our horses, we know what we can and can't do with them, and if I don't know by now, I ain't never gonna know. Unless you absolutely know your horse, know how to feed a horse a treat, or generally a skilled horseperson, it's best not to feed them or feed them from a bucket. Many years ago, I apprenticed with a very good, very strict trainer, there was no treats, yet I saw him sneak his own personal rope horse a peppermint when he thought no one was looking....
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I am not here to promote anythingNo, that's not true, I am here to promote everything equestrian and everyone enjoying horses!
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post #104 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 09:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smilie View Post
Well, done correctly, no.
At the same time, I had a friend that used to scratch the rump of her foals
Did not take them long to start to turn their rump to a person, backing up... behind his ears rubbed, after a bridle is taken off, which is okay, but when that horse then is allowed to start rubbing his head on the person, ... a scratch on the withers, is a good way to reward a horse after a good ride, and the horse understands that much more then a pat on his rump,
A scratch, or whatever desirable stimulus you use as +R or a 'treat' can absolutely be effective. It's not about the food! And as per eg above, can absolutely have 'bad outcomes' when given without rules. I don't get what you see is so different about food Smiley, when for eg. you're not blaming, warning against grooming the horse, because of the above 'wrong' behaviours. It is the same thing. Whatever you allow and reinforce is what you get, so be conscious of what you're teaching with whatever 'good thing' the horse is rewarded with. And I have no idea how you arrive at the idea that a horse 'understands' a scratch on the wither more than anywhere else on his anatomy. IME horses tend to enjoy it in many other places more than on the wither.

Mulefeather explained well it's not the trick you ask for or the reinforcement that's given, but that it also needs to be learned that it should not be done in absence of a cue. For eg. my horses love a bum scratch and I'm happy to oblige. But if they try to 'beg' it themselves, they don't get. They may even get mildly punished for it too. They only get the reinforcement when I ask them to back towards me.

Quote:
Ok loosie, if you're gonna drag out Temple Grandin to check on the 1 second food reward association go to page 318. Then turn to page 323 where she says, "Use no punishment. This means no stimuli that cause fear or pain."
Wasn't doing it to 'check', just interested to read her views again. Without going into great detail, I find punishment is more often than not unnecessary & problematic - often inappropriate. I also agree that, unless for eg it's a situation of self defense, emergency measures, that punishing to a level of fear or pain is best avoided. Obviously those levels are also very different for different horses & situations too. Just that I 'never say never' and don't believe punishment is necessarily a wrong answer either.

Quote:
But when the every time slowly becomes random, they think, "didn't work this time, I'll try it again and maybe it will this time".
Why people get addicted to poker machines & not vending machines!

Quote:
loosie said, <but basically, behaviorally speaking, we all, whatever animal, learn essentially the same way.>
I tried to explain that I mean the basics of reinforcement/punishment. Desirable consequences increase & strengthen behaviours, unpleasant consequences decrease & weaken them. That's all. Of course we all think differently, are motivated by different things, have more or less reasoning power, empathy, etc.
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post #105 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Hondo View Post
It is just too bad I think that negative reinforcement got named negative reinforcement.
Yeah, lots of misconceptions there, when people don't get that 'negative' means 'minus' not 'bad'. And positive is adding, not necessarily 'good'. And I'm not sure that -P works well with animals really, but yep, works great on us humans! One reason why my kids get pocket money.... because then it also becomes leverage when they're 'fined' for misdemeanors!
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post #106 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 09:40 PM
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Hi Harold, All!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondo View Post
In defense of Smilie, though I doubt she needs it. If I were a professional horse trainer, training horses for others or horses that would likely be sold, I doubt I would even consider giving or using hand fed treats.
Well, I agree. A trainer isn't there to develop a relationship (per se) with the animal, just to "rough in" a framework so the client or prospective buyer has a solid foundation to build on.

And a trainer has a set of tools that they use, just like a carpenter, or a mechanic. They use them because they work. For them. Most of the time. This does not imply that they are the only tools available, and certainly not that they are the optimum tools for the specific task at hand.

As a horse owner, it remains Your job to put the final polish on Your relationship with Your equine partner; no matter how good of a job the trainer has done, the final goal has to be effective communication between You and Your Horse. Not your trainer and your horse. And I say "relationship" but call it what you will.

And in the long run, it doesn't matter how you go about developing it, or what form it takes, only that it exists.

Furthermore, I doubt that the majority of forum members fall into the professional trainer category; a pro already has his/her tool set pretty well defined, and probably will not be online looking for generalized answers. It's the average horse owner, I think, who probably makes up the majority of a forums readers. Not contributors, mind you, readers.

Just as a rough common denominator, these good people probably want a happy relationship with their equine, and a relaxing ride or other interaction with them once in awhile. And they deserve to be able to find references to all sorts of "tools" when they come looking. It is then up to them to sort the wheat from the chaff, to apply Critical Thinking if you will.

So I would argue that the purpose of this forum, of the Internet in general for that matter, is exactly the opposite of what Smilie proposes. If someone wants a "stock" answer, they can get it from Linda, Pat, or Clint. Or from Smilie should she choose to contribute. But let's not discourage the alternate points of view.

My exalted opinion, and worth every penny you paid for it :-) Steve

Aah: 73 DE KG0MB
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Microelectronics Research
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post #107 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 09:57 PM
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Hi All!

I didn't know where to grab a quote for this. But:

Mare Mandolin from our herd is your classic pasture ornament. She is quite sweet, but she likes 1) food, and 2) being groomed. She likes it so much that she will come up and attempt to push me off of whoever I am working on; "Brush Me!, Brush Meee!!!" I shoo her off, of course, but perhaps I shouldn't ever groom her as it causes pushy behavior . . .

A pro trainer might have to deal with this, somehow discourage the habit; I just laugh and go on with business. Major difference in philosophy.

Steve
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post #108 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waresbear View Post
there was no treats, yet I saw him sneak his own personal rope horse a peppermint when he thought no one was looking....
hee hee :)
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post #109 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by loosie View Post
One reason why my kids get pocket money.... because then it also becomes leverage when they're 'fined' for misdemeanors!
Oh you bad loosie! I not gonna choose a parent with behavioral training next time around. :)
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post #110 of 134 Old 04-21-2015, 10:20 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by george the mule View Post
hi harold, all!



Well, i agree. A trainer isn't there to develop a relationship (per se) with the animal, just to "rough in" a framework so the client or prospective buyer has a solid foundation to build on.

And a trainer has a set of tools that they use, just like a carpenter, or a mechanic. They use them because they work. For them. Most of the time. This does not imply that they are the only tools available, and certainly not that they are the optimum tools for the specific task at hand.

As a horse owner, it remains your job to put the final polish on your relationship with your equine partner; no matter how good of a job the trainer has done, the final goal has to be effective communication between you and your horse. Not your trainer and your horse. And i say "relationship" but call it what you will.

And in the long run, it doesn't matter how you go about developing it, or what form it takes, only that it exists.

Furthermore, i doubt that the majority of forum members fall into the professional trainer category; a pro already has his/her tool set pretty well defined, and probably will not be online looking for generalized answers. It's the average horse owner, i think, who probably makes up the majority of a forums readers. Not contributors, mind you, readers.

Just as a rough common denominator, these good people probably want a happy relationship with their equine, and a relaxing ride or other interaction with them once in awhile. And they deserve to be able to find references to all sorts of "tools" when they come looking. It is then up to them to sort the wheat from the chaff, to apply critical thinking if you will.

So i would argue that the purpose of this forum, of the internet in general for that matter, is exactly the opposite of what smilie proposes. If someone wants a "stock" answer, they can get it from linda, pat, or clint. Or from smilie should she choose to contribute. But let's not discourage the alternate points of view.

My exalted opinion, and worth every penny you paid for it steve

aah: 73 de kg0mb
+2, 73.............
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