What is an “incompatible behavior?”
Simply put, we mean train your dog to give you a behavior you do want or a “good behavior”, and replace that behavior for the undesired or “bad behavior”. Your dog can’t give you the good behavior and the bad behavior at the same time, therefore the good behavior is incompatible with the bad behavior.
Here is an example of what many of you would probably agree is a bad behavior:
Charging the door and/or jumping on guests when they come to the door. If you agree that this is a bad behavior, my question for you would be: What do you want your dog to do instead? Since we truly can teach you to train your dog to give you just about any behavior(s) you would like, which good behavior(s) would you like to replace charging the door or jumping on guests.
Here is an example of an Incompatible Behavior:
We could easily train your dog to go to a mat and then “sit” and “stay” whenever a guest knocks on the door or rings the door bell. Sitting and staying on a mat is incompatible with charging the door and jumping on guests, therefore we have just trained your dog to have a good behavior when presented with the stimulus of hearing a door bell ring or a knock on the door.
I think most of you will agree that yelling “no” at your dog when he charged the door and then yelling “no” again while your dog jumps all over your guest generally isn’t very effective. Saying “no” gives your dog a good indication you don’t like their current behavior, but if you haven’t defined a good (incompatible) behavior to replace their current behavior, you are usually only setting you and your dog up for frustration.
I hope we have given you a new perspective for dealing with undesired (bad) behaviors and maybe even planted the seed for some ideas of your own to manage a problem behavior your dog may have…