Ask An Expert

At Dognition, we believe that shared inquiry and discovery fuel the greatest benefits for dogs and their owners. Therefore we’ve partnered with the world’s leading canine cognition experts and canine-focused institutions/organizations.

Now, you also have the opportunity to inquire and learn from our experts.

Scientific Advisory Board- The experts on dog cognition and psychology
Dr. Brian Hare
Dr. Juliane Kaminski
Dr. Josep Call
Dr. Richard Wrangham
Dr. Laurie Santos
Dr. Adam Miklosi

Expert Panel- The experts on everything else dog!
Kyra Sundance – Expert Trainer
Victoria Stilwell – Expert Trainer
Nina Ottosson- Dog Toy Designer
Richard Hawkins – Vet
Paul Mundel – Canine Companions of Independence
Betsy Saul – Petfinder Foundation

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  1. Answered- Teaching dogs how to learn rather than tricks

    I heard an interview with Dr. Brian Hare and he describes another dognition expert, Dr. Adam Miklosi taught dogs how to learn by mimicking people. I'd like to know in more detail how this is done. I think it could greatly increase the speed in which dog can then learn new trained behaviors.

    52 votes
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      4 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

      Video of a dog doing the Imitation Experiment:

      http://youtu.be/PHb9ZFkuv1s

      An Answer from Dr. Adam Miklosi:

      Are dogs able to imitate the action of others?

      In 2006 we published the first scientific study on imitation in dogs (Topál et al 2006). This was followed by some debate whether one can really speak about ‘imitation’ in this situation. We defined imitation as the ability to perform a functionally analogue behaviour after seeing in done by others (humans or dogs).

      We believe that dogs, as a social species, are able to imitate an action shown by others but it is very difficult to provide a clear evidence for this under controlled experimental conditions. Our procedure was the first to provide strong evidence, despite the fact that dog trainers or people working with dogs (e.g. shepherds) probably relied on this ability already many 100 years ago. Given the assumption that dogs have the ability…

    • 29 votes
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        0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • What if food, toys and praise don't get the dog's attention?

        My Jack Russell doesn't care about food, toys or praise while we are walking, his only focus is squirrels, rabbits, etc... and dogs, with two different reactions. For small animals, he wants to chase it, for dogs he barks and try to reach them at all cost.
        He passed through 2 different trainers, I read more than 10 books on dog behavior, I took classes... but nothing, he doesn't change. And by the time is getting old, I'm concerned about his health.
        I'm hopeless here, I just accepted the way he is, but maybe you have some advices.

        Thank you!

        9 votes
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          0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
        • My dog has bad front door manners.

          My 3 year old neutered male second generation wheaten/standard poodle mix is sweet, well behaved, gentle and affable. But when someone comes to the front door, he cannot control his excitement. It doesnt matter whether the person at the door is a total stranger or my mother, he jumps all over them in his exuberance. He often gets sent to his kennel as a punishment (which he hates but accepts). We could discourage his behavior with his electic collar but I am reluctant to use painful training techniques. Any ideas or insight you have would be appreciated.

          7 votes
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            0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
          • 6 votes
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              0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • How can I stop my dog running up to strangers and jumping up to 'kiss' them in greeting.

              I am keeping my 18 month old dog on leash around people at the moment as he leaps up at peoples faces to greet them. This in not acceptable for most people. He has learnt not to do it to us and can be controlled at home but in the park it is an issue. Any ideas on the best way to stop this behaviour.

              5 votes
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                0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Why does my dog chew on hard things?

                Truffle our 2 year old lab likes to steal clothes, but one he has stolen them will not chew on them. However, when he steals something hard, like eyeglasses, he will chew these to bits. Why does he do this, and is there any way to stop it?

                4 votes
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                  0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • How can I teach my dog not to be afraid?

                  My dog gets skittish around random moving objects. If a piece of paper is blowing in the wind and comes close to him he gets extremely frightened, and I can't bend down to pet him with anything in my hand because he'll try to get away from it. What can I do to train him not to be so afraid? Strangely enough, he's not afraid of other dogs or people, just random objects.

                  4 votes
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                    0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                  • Treats become ineffective rewards for my dog when we're outside. I give one to him, but he drops in on the ground in favor of other things.

                    He'd rather look at fire hydrants and trees than accept a treat for good behavior. How should I reward him when we are training outside so that he will be more motivated to repeat desired behaviors?

                    4 votes
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                      0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • 3 votes
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                        0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • Why does my dog poop while he walks and how can I get him to stop this habit?

                        Half the time when I walk my dog, when he stops to poop he will start to walk again while he is still urinating. How can I get him to stop this habit without him thinking that I'm trying to teach him that urinating is wrong?

                        3 votes
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                          0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • What can I do to control excitement barking in Briar-Rose? Controlling her barking when she is learning, or when she is confused.

                          What can I do to control excitement barking in Briar-Rose? Controlling her barking when she is learning, or when she is confused. She learns, but it is difficult to show her new things through the cacophony of high pitched barking. Other instructors, like agility or freestyle have a hard time instructing me, as Briar-Rose is always barking. I've tried tugging, but as soon as I release the tug the barking starts. the same with feeding to keep her from barking - it just starts up again, when I stop. I have also trained her to go to her rug and…

                          1 vote
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                            0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                          • Now that I know Buster is an Ace, how can I apply that to change a behavior?

                            Now that I know Buster is an Ace, how can I apply that to change a behavior? pants, whines in long trips. We have tried medication, one didn't work, the other makes him too dopy; I'd rather change his behavior than drug him.

                            1 vote
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                              0 comments  ·  Training  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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