The Ultimate Dog Training Quiz

By: HowStuffWorks.com Contributors

The Ultimate Dog Training Quiz
Image: Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Tribune News Service/Getty Images

About This Quiz

Training a dog might not be as easy as one-two-three, but it's rewarding for both handler and dog. With consistent efforts it can bring out the best in the duo, generating desirable behaviors in the dog and satisfaction on the part of both. Take this quiz to learn more about how dog training works.
How much money do Americans spend on their pet dogs per year?
more than $40,000
more than $40 million
more than $40 billion
According to 2005 figures, it was just under $40 billion then and is certainly more today.

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What are the main differences between the various dog training methods?
how quickly they work and how much the dog and handler enjoy them
Of all the training methods available, they differ in how quickly they work and how much the dog and handler enjoy them.
how difficult they are and how much the dog absorbs the concepts being taught
how expensive they are to implement

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In Pavlov's original study, he added the component of _____ to the paired salivating-feeding operations.
food preparation
bell ringing
He added bell ringing so that the dog would associate the three components together: bell ringing, salivating and being fed.
flashing lights

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Pavlov termed the salivating phenomenon as _____ whereas the bell ringing was _____
an unconditioned stimulus, a conditioned stimulus
The salivating was an unconditioned stimulus insofar as it was natural and no training was involved, whereas the bell ringing was a conditioned stimulus that prompted a conditioned, or trained, response.
a conditioned response, an unconditioned stimulus
an unconditioned response, an unconditioned stimulus

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Regarding classical conditioning, which applies to both animals and humans, is the learning active or passive?
it differs between animals and humans
active
passive
The learning is passive, even involuntary. A human example of this is when we tense up at the sound of an ambulance driving past. This response is involuntary and learned passively.

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What does the reward and punishment system, introduced by Skinner, rely on?
the age group of the learner
the actions of the learner
It relies on the actions of the learner. If the learner acts in a certain way, he or she will receive a reward and the converse is true, too. But the choice is voluntary.
the wishes of the trainer

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What did Skinner call his approach to learned, conditioned behavior?
behavior conditioning
operant conditioning
He called it operant conditioning: The operant is the learner's action on the environment to elicit a desired response.
operant behavior

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Which of these is an example of a negative reward?
a tug on the collar to pull the animal in a certain direction
giving a sugar cube for waving the foot
a horse galloping faster to stop the pressure of spurs
A negative reward refers to the removal of something as a reward. In this case, the horse having to gallop faster to remove pressure is the negative reward.

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If you don't like to use the negative reward of an electronic collar for ethical reasons, how else can you train your dog?
You can use positive rewards, such as praise and patting.
The possibilities are unlimited, but your best bet is to use positive rewards, like praise or patting.
You can use a stick.
You can use electronic prongs.

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What's the best reinforcement for all dogs?
it differs for every dog
Every dog is different, so what works for one might not work at all for another. Just like people, dogs have their likes and dislikes too.
snacks and treats
dog toys

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What animals did the Brelands conduct a training experiment on in the 1950s?
wild cats
marine animals
They experimented on marine animals, teaching them to recognize a marker of desired behavior, even when it wasn't the final action before receiving a reward.
circus animals

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If the marker isn't the reward, what is it?
a consolation prize
a signal of correct behavior and the promise of a reward
The marker is a signal that the behavior is correct and that a reward will follow soon.
an encouraging sign of affection

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What is a common marker that people use, especially after it was introduced by animal behaviorist Karen Pryor?
a sharp, swift bell ring
a high-pitched whistle
a metal clicker
Many people use a simple metal clicker.

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When using a voice marker, what should you consider?
The word should be short and specific.
The tone must be consistent.
Both of the above are correct.
The word used as a marker should be short and specific and the tone consistent.

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How does the trainer help the dog understand that clicking means a treat will follow?
by repeatedly clicking at the beginning and immediately offering a treat
The trainer begins by repeatedly clicking, then immediately offering a treat.
by telling the dog in soothing tones
by giving a treat, then clicking, giving a treat, then clicking again

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In the process of dog training, what is meant be shaping?
The dog's behavior is shaped to conform to what is expected of it.
The dog is lured into a shaped structure to elicit desired behavior.
As the dog learns a new step, the standard for what earns a reward gets higher.
It's a step-by-step process, during which the stakes get higher as the dog becomes ready to learn more.

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If you command your dog to sit while you're standing, then do so again while you're sitting down, why is it difficult for the dog to understand the command?
because animals are contextual learners
Animals are contextual learners, so your changing position is, in a sense, a change of context for the dog.
because the dog doesn't know whether to do what you're doing or the opposite
because the dog misreads the signals

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What is the hardest part of using the clicker system?
remembering to click when you want to offer a reward
having good timing and consistency
The hardest part, at least from the trainer's point of view, is having good timing and consistency.
holding the clicker while training the dog

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What is the usual explanation for a dog's failure to learn something?
the dog's lack of intelligence
the dog's unwillingness to cooperate
a breakdown in communication
It usually boils down to a breakdown in communication. The responsibility, then, would rest on the trainer to try to improve the communication and make it clearer.

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What is a downside of punishers?
They don't elicit the desired behavior effectively.
They're often associated with the handler rather than the misbehavior.
Punishers in the form of unpleasant consequences are often associated with the handler rather than the transgressed behavior.
They're cruel.

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You Got:
/20
Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Tribune News Service/Getty Images

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