CEU Event: Cognition Unleashed: Thinking Dogs & Transforming Behavior the CU Way

When: 10/30/2020 4:45pm to 10/30/2020 6:15pm
Where: Online


*CPDT-KA: 0.5 *CBCC-KA: 1
CPDT-KSA Knowledge: 0.50 CBCC-KSA Knowledge: 1.00
CPDT-KSA Skills: 0.00 CBCC-KSA Skills: 0.00

* Courses approved for CBCC-KA CEUs may be applied to a CPDT-KA recertification. Courses approved for CPDT-KA may not be applied to a CBCC-KA recertification.


Control Unleashed® is simply one of the most effective behavior change programs currently available for dogs and, more recently, horses as well as other animals. This begs the question of why CU is so successful. While most discussions of CU have focused on implementing popular individual protocols such as Look at That, my presentation will examine the major underlying reasons for CU's success, and that is, Control Unleashed is actually Cognition Unleashed. Cognition is best described as information processing because it functions as a variety of mechanisms like perception, learning, memory, and decision-making that enable animals to acquire, process, store and act on input from the environment. Dogs (and all animals, including humans) then use this information to make decisions about their behavior. CU enhances several of these mechanisms, especially the last one: decision-making. One of the keys to how the CU program teaches dogs (and other animals) enhanced decision-making processes is through its emphasis on default behaviors. Default behaviors such as reorienting to the handler or looking calmly at a trigger are not cued, and dogs offer them voluntarily 24/7 because they have become second-nature behavior patterns. The CU emphasis on default behaviors produces thinking dogs, that is, dogs who can problem-solve, think in arousal, and take their newly honed decision-making skills into any context, whether or not they have ever been in that environment previously. My presentation will explore how CU helps dogs learn enhanced decision-making skills and how CU teaches dogs what I describe as decision rules for optimism. While this concept does not appear in any of the Control Unleashed books, I argue that it insightfully captures not only the crux of what dogs learn when they go through a CU program but also how the program actually transforms canine behavior.

Sponsor:Clean Run
Speaker(s):Dr. Laura Donaldson, PhD, CDBC, KPA CTP, CCUI

Contact: Clean Run
 Email: info@cleanrun.com
 Phone: 413-532-1389
 Web: https://cleanrun.com/