Can dog training techniques be used across species?
Yes! Positive reinforcement works the same across pretty much all species that have the cognitive capacity to be trained, even fish or some intelligent insects!
Working with goats and chickens was wonderful. Chickens are usually thought of as dumb, but they are actually very smart and have distinct personalities. Goats are like big, hard-horned dogs. Very clever and trainable!
Some of the things we had to train the goats to do were:
1) Wearing a specially made diaper
2) Walk on a leash
3) Ride in crates in a van
4) Be comfortable being in Times Square, office buildings, the theater
5) Meet and work with the actors who had no animal handling experience
However, we also taught both the goats and chickens plenty of tricks in our spare time, and wouldn’t you know it, they LOVED to show off! They would get extremely excited when they heard certain songs come on because they knew they would be going on. When they saw their favorite actors, they went crazy and couldn’t wait for pets and treats. They even tried to escape and run to the stage a few times!
Because they were properly trained, we didn’t have to force them to do anything, because they were so excited and happy to be doing it in the first place!
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