Yeah...Wouldn't be my first choice in avoiding snakes. Still If I lived in Australia or anywhere else where the chance of my dog interacting with a seriously deadly snake, I would probably go for it.Pettrix, those terms are often a bit confusing. "Negative reinforcement" means the dog is being punished (usually with a shock) and the punishment is removed (that's the "negative" part of the equation —*the subtraction of something) when the dog does the desired behavior (leaves the snake alone). That's the "reinforcement" in this case — the removal of an often painful punishment is reinforcing (rewarding) to the dog. The class you described sounds like the type referenced in triciakoontz's post. It sounds like they might be shocking dogs at the sight of the snakes. If that's not what you're looking for, you might ask a few more questions and clarify the specifics of this class.
Yeah...Wouldn't be my first choice in avoiding snakes. Still If I lived in Australia or anywhere else where the chance of my dog interacting with a seriously deadly snake, I would probably go for it.
It's a bit harder to find because it's a relatively new concept, but it's out there. Did you see the first link triciakoontz posted? There was mention of a step-by-step training book. I've also seen online classes that teach snake avoidance without using shock, so that could be another option to look into, if you're interested.I don't know of any positive reinforcement rattlesnake avoidance training.
I am of the same mindset. I've heard and even seen quite a few dogs bitten by rattlers and end up dying or suffering debilitating injuries. Rattlesnakes pose a unique challenge to an untrained dog because dobes are curious and prey driven. They will always approach the snake and the results will be deadly.My friend in Arizona paid for rattlesnake training for her dog. It involves a shock collar and is hard to watch. She says better shocked than dead and insists it has saved her dog's life. Me, I am just glad I don't have to make that decision... I live on an island with no venomous snakes, porcupines, skunks, or large predators.
Sorry to hear about your dog and his rattlesnake bite. Snake avoidance classes using live snakes (de-fanged) and negative reinforcement is something that can save a dogs life. In the desert SW, it's not IF you run into a snake but WHEN you do, how will your dobe react? Naturally they will try and sniff and investigate it up-close which will result in disaster. Once they are trained with snake avoidance the dog will remember that snakes = pain and therefore avoid going near it.I once owned a dog that was bitten by a large shedding snake when he was retrieving a thrown stick. It was a terrible bite and the poor dog's front leg swelled to the size of a human thigh and he almost died. It cost a fortune in antivenin, but after that he never went near a snake again... Even a tiny scrap of shed skin would send him packing! I now believe that he could have learned the same lesson with far less pain if I had attended avoidance training classes.