Reinforcement vs. Bribery

Training Tidbit for May 2011: The difference between reinforcement and bribery This comes up in training sessions ALL the time, usually brought up by someone who has been told by a well-meaning friend or professional that they are one and the same, and are now afraid that by using positive reinforcement to train they are […]

Penguin Tickling

Penguin tickling: the latest almost-fatal dose of CUTE going around the internet. Don’t we all shriek a little when we’re tickled? *Once again, the behavior nerd in me has to add: this penguin is not actually “ticklish.”  Can anyone guess what little Cookie is really doing? If you give up, click here for the answer. […]

Getting a good recall or step-up

Training Tidbit – April 2011 The Golden Rule of animal training: Don’t ever, ever call your pet to you (or ask your bird to step up) then punish them.  Animals are not stupid; they learn by association and consequences, and if there is an unwanted consequence for coming to you, they will be reluctant to […]

Parrot Screaming

My Parrot is Screaming! Excessive vocalization is one of the most common complaints parrot guardians have.  Unfortunately for our ears (and our neighbors!), even happy, healthy parrots can be very loud.  Screaming seems to be self-reinforcing for pet parrots.  Wondering whether the level of bird noise in your household is normal or not, and how […]

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