The Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research has just published a paper based on research conducted as part of our MSc Applied Behaviour Analysis. The paper, entitled It’s mine! Using clicker training as a treatment of object guarding in four companion dogs (Canis lupus familiaris), is based onNicole Pfaller-Sadovsky's MScABA dissertation. Nicole's research was supervised by Dr Camilo Hurtado-Parrado, Konrad Lorenz University (Colombia).
Aggressive behaviours in companion dogs are a serious problem to owners, which often result in important physical and emotional damage on the victims. Aggressive incidents frequently happen during human-dog interactions (i.e. reaching toward the dog or petting it) while the dog is engaging with a preferred item (e.g. a toy, sock or shoe). The current study investigated whether a clicker-training approach, backward chaining, could decrease the frequency of category-II (e.g. ears flattened and/or hovering over object) and category-III (e.g. staring and/or stiffening up) behaviors by establishing an alternative target response of releasing preferred item on cue.