Ever wonder why your dog isn't listening, despite giving them some treats? Here are a few reasons why positive reinforcement training might fail.
1) You didn't reinforce enough. After a few repetitions Fluffy seemed to understand the signal for the behavior you wanted, so you stopped reinforcing the behavior ... too soon.
2) You didn't systematical add levels of difficulty.
3) You didn't systematically reduce the ratio of correct response to reinforcer, meaning you delivered treats continuously for too many weeks.
4) You didn't get the food out of your hand, so in Fluffy's mind the food in the hand became part of your signal. Remove the food from your hand, and Fluffy gets confused.
But there is more to it. Dogs are associative learners. They connect events that happen at the same time. If this happened and that happened - right or wrong the dog makes a connection between the two events.
Stay tuned for the next part soon!