We used subtitles on the video, but the reality is there are a tremendous amount of nuances involved with positive reinforcement training, and even in the text, we could never cover even a fraction. This video is from a few weeks ago, it was when Rana was just learning to hold her foot steady while someone files. The process to get here is significant, starting with the basics of not being afraid of the target, to understanding its purpose, to keeping body parts calm and comprehending how it is leading that body part (sometimes it is different.) Karissa was here shortly after Rana’s arrival and worked diligently and lovingly to get her through the hardest part- the very beginning. Each new lesson takes a bit of time, but Rana is really good with all of it.
There are some things we do with two people, others with one, but we like to try and get many behaviors down with just one person, in case it is ever needed. Once she gets comfortable with the file (many circus elephants have had standard ‘tools’ used on them in an abusive manner, so sometimes they are fearful), the feal and motion, you slowly extend the time.
For those who know us and know how Scott is, you may think he is a little quiet for her being very good, and he was. We were trying to get her breathing on the video to share with someone. When Rana is learning new things or concentrating hard, she breathes loudly. It’s not a forceful blowing, she’s not being ‘rude’ or pushy, it really is quite sweet. If you listen carefully, you can hear it once he starts filing. But please know, the celebrations after are generally more vocal and praising. Especially for new behaviors.
March 31. 2019