Thursday, February 14, 2008

Even Husbands Can Be Trained!

Here is an amusing story related to fish training from today's headlines. It describes an interview with Amy Sutherland, author of a new book called:

What Shamu Taught Me About Life, Love, and Marriage

Ms. Sutherland is a profession dolphin and whale trainer who has used her expertise in training animals to 'train' her husband. She suggests in the book that all women can learn these methods.

She declared: 'If you can train a fish, you can train a husband.' She went on to explain how 'positive reinforcement' techniques used for training dolphins could be used on men.

I don't know about men, but my wife and I have employed many of the same techniques of positive reinforcement we've developed for training pet fish at Fish School, in order to shape the behavior of our kids.

In fact, just last night, my wife heaped praise on my son Kyle for the great job he'd done brushing his teeth. Guess what - this morning he was so anxious to get the 'reward' again, he proudly showed off his clean teeth to her after he brushed. He had indeed, done another good job and she complimented him on his brushing once again.

As we said in the video for the new
R2 Fish Training Kit, these positive reinforcement techniques don't just work on kids, they work on fish too! According to Ms. Sutherland, the apparently work on husbands as well. Being a husband myself, I'm not so sure. I'm pretty stubborn :-).



Anonymous said...

Amy Sutherland is not actually a professional dolphin trainer. She is a journalist who wrote a book about a school for animal trainers (Exotic Animal Training and Management Program at Moorpark College, CA). That book led to an article for the New York Times about using positive reinforcement on people, which then led to this book. Great book, by the way!

Dr. Dean Pomerleau said...


Thanks for the correction / clarification!