Condition 2

Order of Trials
Non Ostensive.png

Here is the second condition. It is very similar to the first except the way that you cue your dog is a little different. First, you will not say your dog’s name, and second, you will not make eye contact with the dog. If you think your dog needs additional warm up trials to get re-engaged, feel free to complete a few before starting condition 2.  

  • As before, at the start of each trial the dog will be held by the handler. 

  • The experimenter will place both cups in front of themself directly side by side. They will then place the occluder in front of the cups, hiding them from the dog’s view. 

  • The experimenter then raises the treat over the top of the occluder, and instead of calling the dog’s name, they will clear their throat. Then the experimenter shows the dog the treat while looking straight down at the floor.  

  • Next, the experimenter places the treat on the floor between the two cups and behind the occluder. The experimenter then picks up both cups at the same time and places one cup (following the sequence given under the video) over the treat while placing the other “empty” cup directly next to it. The order of which cup (left or right) the experimenter should follow is directly under these instructions. Keep in mind that all of the lefts and rights are in reference to the experimenter, not to the dog or the handler. 

  • The experimenter then removes the occluder & moves the cups at the same time away from their body to the left and right so that the experimenter is now centered between the two cups. 

  • The experimenter returns to their resting position and makes eye contact with the dog. The experimenter looks down at the elbow of their pointing arm, then points (for two seconds) toward the cup with the reward. The experimenter should point to the cup using the opposite hand to the location of the cup. That is, if the cup with the food on it is on the left, the experimenter should point to it across their body with their right hand. The experimenter does not make eye contact with the dog while pointing. 

  • After two seconds of pointing, the experimenter should return to resetting position then pause for a second before releasing the dog with their cue word “Okay,” and the dog is allowed to search. If the dog doesn’t move within 3 seconds, the handler can nudge the dog (gentle, centered tap on the butt or shoulders). Once the dog moves, the handler should not touch the dog until the end of the trial when they are retrieving the dog.

  • When the dog makes a choice, the experimenter will say “choice” if the dog is correct or “miss,” if the dog is incorrect. Importantly, this time no one should praise the dog for a correct choice. 

  • The experimenter will then tilt the chosen cup back slightly to allow the dog to search underneath the cup.

    • If the dog chooses the cup with the treat, they can eat the treat. If the dog chooses the empty cup, they do not receive anything and are not shown what is under the other cup.

    • If the dog hasn’t made a choice within approximately 30 seconds, repeat the trial.

    • If the dog has not made a choice twice in a row, repeat two trials of Phase 3 warm-ups.

  • After the choice is made, whether or not the dog receives the treat, the handler retrieves the dog, praising and holding the dog while awaiting the next trial. 

  • Repeat steps 1-8 for 7 additional trials. Once you have completed 8 total trials, you can move on to Condition 3. 

  • Give your dog a quick play break! They deserve it!