Karen Pryor


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Karen Pryor is the CEO of Karen Pryor Clicker Training and Karen Pryor Academy.

Karen is an active, leading spokesperson and teacher for effective force-free training across the globe. Her work with dolphins in the 1960s revolutionized animal training by pioneering and popularizing force-free training methods based on operant conditioning and the conditioned reinforcer.

Karen’s 40-year career working with and educating scientists, professional trainers, and pet owners has changed the lives of countless animals and their caretakers in zoos, oceanariums, and pet-owning households.

She is the author of six books, including Don’t Shoot the Dog!, the "bible" of training with positive reinforcement. Her most recent book, Reaching the Animal Mind, de
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Karen Pryor isn't a Goodreads Author (yet), but she does have a blog, so here are some recent posts imported from her feed.

Clicker training, the science-based system of teaching behavior with positive reinforcers and a marker signal, is becoming immensely popular, world-wide, with some dog owners and trainers, while still being rejected by others. It seems so alien, so different from traditional training, that many are very reluctant to try this new system on their already well-trained dogs. Why not leave your dogs...

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Published on August 08, 2016 11:03 • 32 views
Average rating: 4.25 · 5,724 ratings · 494 reviews · 23 distinct worksSimilar authors
Don't Shoot the Dog!: The N...

4.27 avg rating — 3,750 ratings — published 1984 — 8 editions
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Reaching the Animal Mind: C...

4.37 avg rating — 1,033 ratings — published 2008 — 6 editions
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Getting Started: Clicker Tr...

3.89 avg rating — 372 ratings — published 1999 — 9 editions
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Lads Before the Wind: Diary...

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4.39 avg rating — 147 ratings — published 1975 — 5 editions
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Clicker Training for Cats

3.87 avg rating — 150 ratings — published 2001 — 3 editions
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Nursing Your Baby: Revised

4.27 avg rating — 104 ratings — published 1963 — 23 editions
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Karen Pryor on Behavior: Es...

4.34 avg rating — 29 ratings — published 1994
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Clicker Training for Dogs

4.08 avg rating — 26 ratings — published 2001
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Dolphin Societies: Discover...

really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 21 ratings — published 1991 — 3 editions
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A Dog & A Dolphin 2.0: An I...

4.14 avg rating — 14 ratings
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“I couldn't help wondering where porpoises had learned this game of running on the bows of ships. Porpoises have been swimming in the oceans for seven to ten million years, but they've had human ships to play with for only the last few thousand. Yet nearly all porpoises, in every ocean, catch rides for fun from passing ships; and they were doing it on the bows of Greek triremes and prehistoric Tahitian canoes, as soon as those seacraft appeared. What did they do for fun before ships were invented?
Ken Norris made a field observation one day that suggests the answer. He saw a humpback whale hurrying along the coast of the island of Hawaii, unavoidably making a wave in front of itself; playing in that bow wave was a flock of bottlenose porpoises. The whale didn't seem to be enjoying it much: Ken said it looked like a horse being bothered by flies around its head; however, there was nothing much the whale could do about it, and the porpoises were having a fun time. ”
Karen Pryor, Lads Before the Wind: Diary of a Dolphin Trainer

“One reason punishment doesn't usually work is that it does not coincide with the undesirable behavior; it occurs afterward, and sometimes, as in courts of law, long afterward. The subject therefore may not connect the punishment to his or her previous deeds; animals never do, and people often fail to. If a finger fell off every time someone stole something, or if cars burst into flames when they were parked illegally, I expect stolen property and parking tickets would be nearly nonexistent.”
Karen Pryor, Don't Shoot the Dog!: The New Art of Teaching and Training

“The porpoises and whale themselves, in their quests for entertainment, often created problems. One summer a fashion developed in the training tanks (I think Keiki started it) for leaning out over the tank wall and seeing how far you could balance without falling out. Several animals might be teetering on the tank edge at one time, and sometimes one or another did fall out. Nothing much happened to them, except maybe a cut or a scrape from the gravel around the tanks; but of course we had to run and pick them up and put them back in. Not a serious problem, if the animal that fell out was small, but if it was a 400-pound adult bottlenose, you had to find four strong people to get him back, and when it happened over and over again, the people got cross. We feared too, that some animal would fall out at night or when no one was around and dry out, overheat, and die. We yelled at the porpoises, and rushed over and pushed them back in when we saw them teetering, but that just seemed to add to the enjoyment of what I'm sure the porpoises thoguht of as a hilariously funny game. Fortunately they eventually tired of it by themselves.”
Karen Pryor, Lads Before the Wind: Diary of a Dolphin Trainer

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