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Original message: My previous post was too long, and this stuff wasn't included -- 5 DON SULLIVAN [and the company that sells his stuff, Thane] Complaints and reviews from real people http://www.pissedconsumer.com/company/don-sullivan.html * Anybody tried Don Sullivan's The Perfect Dog system? Saw an infomercial for this dog training video and equipment: .... Have you purchased this? What was your experience with it? Would you recommend? Best Answer -- Asker's Choice Agility Man answered 6 years ago -- This is a great example of someone being very savvy in how they use the internet. Do a quick search of "Don Sullivan" and "Perfect Dog" and you find a gazillion forums with a question and then a couple of responses that are all positive (without explaining the technique). Yet strangely, the responses seem to read the same..."he's a down to earth guy" or "true to the promises in the infomercial" or "saw results within weeks" or "worked better than anything I've ever tried". 1. Don Sullivan claims that treats don't work. Yeah, if you're luring. But decades of operant conditioning research (with humans and species such as dolphins, horses, cats, orcas and certainly dogs) has proven this to be wrong. The problem is you've got a bunch of old time, out-of-touch with new research, people who think that treats are bribes. They aren't. What you're doing is shaping the association that a dog has with a particular event. 2. He doesn't use a marker (for dogs that would be a clicker, for dolphins or orcas, a whistle) Research has shown that this is the simplest, fastest way to train. All serious animal trainers at places like SeaWorld or in Hollywood animal trainers rely on them. 3. His technique is build around a modified plastic prong collar. Yes, it will change behavior but only a very superficial way. For instance, let's suppose your dog gets frantic when strangers approach the door and begins to bark rapidly. You use the Sullivan collar and the barking stops. Problem solved? Not quite. The dog likely transfers the behavior to something. For instance, it would probably become more likely to bite. The point I'm making is that pain and adversive behavior doesn't solve WHY the dog does what it does, it just shifts the behavior. So if your dog is threatened by a neighboring dog and begins barking whenever that dog appears so you "correct" than your dog doesn't suddenly feel that the other dog isn't a threat, it just doesn't bark. Instead, it may look for an opportunity to attack. Or it may feel that you can't be trusted. Or the dog may be more likely to flee. For decades, old school trainers have used choke collars and prong collars to train dogs. Of course they can produce behavior change. But what we've conclusively found is that it doesn't change WHY the dog was behaving that way, the behavior is transferred to something else, it often produces aggressive dogs or aggressive behavior and it doesn't improve bonds with the handler or owner. But other than that, it's effective. I'll give you one last thought: I compete in agility. At the highest levels, absolutely none of the handlers I know of would treat their dogs this way. And some of them run rescues (so it's not that they have some rare unique dog different from the rest of us). Some of those agility folks have dogs that do tricks shows or TV ads for dog products--again, they'd never think of using such behavior. Save your money. It's much like BarkBusters in that it's all promo. Far better to invest in something like Patricia McConnell's books (the Other End of the Leash is a good one) or Leslie McDevitt's "Control Unleashed" (if you've got a reactive dog) or visit Shirley Chong's website. https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080912153353AAtJ4yf * Don Sullivan's Secrets to Training the Perfect Dog (www.theperfectdog.com) Complaints & Reviews - Fraud About 14 comments, including the terms "Rip Off" and "Fraud" http://www.complaintsboard.com/complaints/don-sullivan039s-secrets-to-training-the-perfect-dog-wwwtheperfectdogcom-c158971.html * Well, thanks for listening.
   
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