# Theory: Operant And Classical Conditioning

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| By Oh_my_dog
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• 1.

### The dog is not learning the meaning of a word as quickly as the owner hoped because... Which of the following is NOT because of overshadowing?

• A.

The handler grabs the food at the same time as he says the clicker word.

• B.

The handler says the command and, at the same time, helps the dog (e.g. luring the dog)

• C.

The dog is too scared or distracted in that specific environment.

C. The dog is too scared or distracted in that specific environment.
Explanation
C. is the correct answer because a dog being scared/distracted in a particular environment has nothing to do with overshadowing. Overshadowing is the process by which learning is impeded because the new word (e.g. 'sit') is overshadowed by something more accessible to the dog (e.g. owner helps with gestures). So the dog learns to ignore verbal commands and go by body language alone.

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• 2.

### We ask our students to pause for 1 second after they say a command or the clicker word. This is because we want them to avoid:

• A.

Sensitisation

• B.

• C.

Shaping

Explanation
Picture this scenario: the owner asks the dog to sit and, AT THE SAME TIME, bends over to lure the dog into position.

This way, the dog doesn't get a chance to process the command 'sit'. He just knows the primate's lips are moving, ignores that, and waits for the primate's body language information instead.

We want to give dogs a chance to know that our voice, and what we say, may be relevant.

In this example, the owner's body language is overshadowing the verbal command for the dog. The owner should have waited one second before helping the dog with a hand gesture/before giving the treat.

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• 3.

### The clicker word/sound is a command.

• A.

Yes

• B.

No

• C.

Yes and no. It is not primarily a command but can be used as one to get the dog's attention.

B. No
Explanation
The clicker word is a (secondary) reward. We sometimes call these "reward markers". It tells the dog the (primary) reward (the food) is coming.

It is NOT a command and should NOT be used as one. Students are often tempted to use it as a recall or attention command (because a dog hearing the clicker word will orient to his owner and come to get the food), but using it as such is technically incorrect and may well ruin the effect of the clicker sound.

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• 4.

### A dog seems scared of motorcycle helmets during the class exercise. What do you advise?

• A.

Expose him at such a distance that he can see it and not mind, then reward each time the dog looks at the helmet.

• B.

Expose him at such a distance that he shows fear, and wait for the fear to abait. Then reward him.

• C.

Do not expose him to the helmet. Advise the owner to avoid helmets from now on.

A. Expose him at such a distance that he can see it and not mind, then reward each time the dog looks at the helmet.
Explanation
b. Exposing him at a distance that he is scared, and waiting for the fear to abait, is called 'flooding'. Flooding carries the risk that the dog's fear actually gets much worse and turns into a phobia.
nn

c. Avoiding all exposures to helmets and the likes will not result in a worsening of the problem, nor in any sort of improvement.
nn

Note: This falls under this particular quiz (Classical and operant conditioning) as it concerns a problematic emotional association (thus classical conditioning).
n

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• 5.

### A dog is acting scared. The owner asks if it's OK to reassure (geruststellen) him. What do you say?

• A.

No. Reassuring him when he is hiding behind you will only reinforce his fear

• B.

Reassuring him calmly, yes. Being over-sympathetic and nervous yourself, no.

B. Reassuring him calmly, yes. Being over-sympathetic and nervous yourself, no.
Explanation
Technically, it is impossible to reward fear. Fear is not a behaviour, thus does not fall under operant conditioning. Thus cannot be rewarded/punished.
n
nFear, as a classical response, can be strengthened/weakened,
nn

If you reassure the dog (e.g. kind words, or even treats), he will experience less fear at that moment. This can help decrease the fearful meaning of the situation for the dog (desensitisation).
nn

It IS, however, possible to reward fearful behaviour: you could accidentally teach the dog to be a drama queen. In this scenario, the dog is not so much FEELING more fearful but ACTING more fearful. This is relatively easy to fix, a lot more than a deep-seated fear. So it's a non-issue in most cases.
nn

It IS, however, possible that your reassurance strengthens his fear: if you yourself, through over-empathising with the dog, end up acting stressy and nervous whilst reassuring the dog.
nn

n

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• 6.

### The dog is learning the clicker word predicts food. What type of conditioning is this?

• A.

Operant

• B.

Classical

• C.

Both

B. Classical
Explanation
It is classical. It is nothing to do with what the dog does. It's not to do with the consequence of the dog's behaviour (as operant conditioning would be).

Sure we tend to click for desirable behaviour, but you could, in principle, decide to click no matter what the dog does. The dog would still expect a treat if he heard the sound, regardless of what he was doing previous to hearing the sound.

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• 7.

### The dog is learning the link between sitting and earning food. What type of conditioning is this?

• A.

Operant

• B.

Classical

• C.

Both

A. Operant
Explanation
It has directly to do with what the dog does. It is the dog learning the consequences of his behaviour.

If you want to split hair, you could argue that every type of operant conditioning has an element of classical conditioning to it, but let's not.

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• 8.

### A dog jumps on people and he gets attention every time (being pushed away, people saying 'no', being petted, etc.). He learns that jumping on people gets him attention. What type of conditioning is this?

• A.

Operant

• B.

Classical

• C.

Both

A. Operant
Explanation
It has to do with what the dog does, how he o.p.e.r.a.t.e.s. He learns the consequences of his behaviour (jumping) = attention.

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• 9.

### The dog is learning that your grabbing the leash predicts a walk. What type of conditioning is this?

• A.

Operant

• B.

Classical

• C.

Both

B. Classical
Explanation
It is classical. It is nothing to do with what the dog does, nothing to do with the dog learning the consequence of his/her behaviour.

It's just something in the dog's world which may, for a while, have no particular meaning to the dog (e.g. you grabbing the leash) acquiring a new meaning (i.e. a walk).

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• 10.

### You ask the dog to sit; The dog sits; You say 'yes'; After a second, you give a treat. You repeat this so often that the dog learns that 'yes' predicts a treat AND that sitting on command predicts a 'yes'. As a result, he sits on command more often. What type of conditioning is this?

• A.

Operant

• B.

Classical

• C.

Both

C. Both
Explanation
Operant: It has to do with what the dog does, how he o.p.e.r.a.t.e.s. (he sits)
Classical: It also has to do with the dog associating something ('yes' word) with something else (food). Regardless of his actions, the clicker word predicts food. In fact, that is how we first teach the clicker word. We say it even if the dog did nothing worthy of rewarding. Just so the dog learns the association between the clicker word and the food.

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• 11.

### A dog barks at the window at people passing by. He does it more and more often as it 'works' (in his mind, barking makes people leave). What type of conditioning is this?

• A.

Operant

• B.

Classical

• C.

Both

A. Operant
Explanation
It has to do with what the dog does. The dog is learning the consequences of his behaviour.

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• 12.

### A dog barks at the window at people passing by. The problem seems to be getting worse and he barks more and more excitedly with each passersby. He does not seem to be getting used to them. This process is called 'sensitisation'. Each passerby acquires a more and more emotional meaning to the dog. Sensitisation is a classical or operant process?  What type of conditioning is sensitisation?

• A.

Operant

• B.

Classical

• C.

Both

B. Classical
Explanation
It is not about the dog learning the consequences of his/her behaviour. That would have been operant.

It is about the dog associating/giving a meaning to something in his/her world. In this case, an emotional meaning (e.g. excitement, fear, anger, etc.)

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• 13.

### If you want your dog to drop the habit of jumping up, you should put the reinforcement (e.g. attention) on what kind of a ratio?

• A.

Intermittent: He gets attention after jumping only once in a while.

• B.

Continuous: He gets attention systematically after jumping

• C.

Cold turkey: He never gets attention after jumping from now on.

C. Cold turkey: He never gets attention after jumping from now on.
Explanation
An intermittent ratio of reinforcement means the behaviour pays off once in a while. This is the worst kind of ratio to extinguish a habit, as it makes the habit more resistant. The jumper keeps thinking "Just one more time"
nnnnn

An intermittent ratio of reinforcement is powerful stuff. It is behind gambling addictions.
nn

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• 14.

### In the operant conditioning quadrant, what does the + (plus) sign stand for?

• A.

Treating the dog in a way he likes after he performs the behaviour (e.g. saying 'good boy' or giving him a treat). '+' consequences are more humane than '-' consequences.

• B.

Something (a consequence) starts, is added (+) as a result of the dog's a behaviour. e.g. He barks -> You kick him; or He sits -> You give him a treat.

B. Something (a consequence) starts, is added (+) as a result of the dog's a behaviour. e.g. He barks -> You kick him; or He sits -> You give him a treat.
Explanation
The '+' is nothing to do with whether the dog experiences the consequence of its behaviour as positive. It is about adding (as opposed to removing) something after he behaved in a certain way. A kiss and a kick are both '+' consequences. A consequence starts/is added (+) as a result of the dog's a behaviour. e.g. He barks -> You kick him; or He sits -> You give him a treat.

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• 15.

### P+ (Positive Punishment, = positieve straf) is experienced as positive by the dog.

• A.

True

• B.

False

B. False
Explanation
P+ stands for 'positive punishment'.

+ means something starts as a result of the dog's behaviour. A kick is P+, for example.

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• 16.

### In the operant conditioning quadrant, the 'P' in 'Punishment' (= straf) is defined as:

• A.

Punishing the dog (e.g. by raising our voice or hitting him)

• B.

Following a dog's specific behaviour with a consequence that will decrease the future likelihood/frequency of this behaviour.

B. Following a dog's specific behaviour with a consequence that will decrease the future likelihood/frequency of this behaviour.
Explanation
P stands for 'Punishment' but it has a slightly different meaning in operant conditioning science than in everyday use.
nn

In operant conditioning, 'P' is answer B. Any consequence of the dog's behaviour that result in the dog performing the behaviour less often.
nn

nn

When the dog does something you want to decrease (e.g. bark), you could add something (e.g. a kick) or remove something (e.g. you turn your back to the dog - assuming he likes you).
nn

Both are technically punishments because both result in the dog performing the behaviour less often.
n

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• 17.

### In the operant conditioning quadrant, the 'R' in 'Reinforcement' (= bekrachtiging) is defined as:

• A.

Rewarding the dog for his good behaviour (e.g. praising, treats)

• B.

Any consequence to a dog's behaviour that increase the future frequency/likelihood of this behaviour.

B. Any consequence to a dog's behaviour that increase the future frequency/likelihood of this behaviour.
Explanation
The 'R' in 'Reinforcement' in operant conditioning refers to any consequence that increases the future frequency or likelihood of a dog's behavior. This can include rewarding the dog for good behavior, such as praising or giving treats. The purpose of reinforcement is to strengthen the desired behavior and encourage its repetition in the future.

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• 18.

### How would you classify OhMyDog's methods on the quadrants?

• A.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement/Positieve Bekrachtiging) & R- (Negative Reinforcement/Negatieve Bekrachtiging)

• B.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement/Positieve Bekrachtiging) & P+ (Positive Punishment/Positieve Straf)

• C.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement/Positieve Bekrachtiging)

• D.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement/Positieve Bekrachtiging) & P- (Negative Punishment/Negatieve Straf)

D. R+ (Positive Reinforcement/Positieve Bekrachtiging) & P- (Negative Punishment/Negatieve Straf)
Explanation
The methods used by OhMyDog can be classified as R+ (Positive Reinforcement/Positieve Bekrachtiging) and P- (Negative Punishment/Negatieve Straf). This means that they use positive reinforcement to reward desired behaviors and negative punishment to remove or withhold something the dog finds rewarding in response to unwanted behaviors.

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• 19.

### In the operant conditioning quadrant, what does the - (minus) sign stand for?

• A.

Treating the dog in a way he dislikes after he performs the behaviour. '-' consequences are less humane then '+' consequences.

• B.

Something stops happening/is removed/fails to happen (-) after the dog performs a certain behaviour. e.g. He barks -> You leave; or He sits -> You stop hanging him by his collar.

B. Something stops happening/is removed/fails to happen (-) after the dog performs a certain behaviour. e.g. He barks -> You leave; or He sits -> You stop hanging him by his collar.
Explanation
The minus sign in the operant conditioning quadrant represents the removal or absence of something after the dog performs a certain behavior. It indicates that something stops happening, is removed, or fails to happen as a consequence of the behavior. For example, if the dog barks, you leave, or if the dog sits, you stop hanging him by his collar. This type of consequence is considered negative reinforcement, as it involves the removal of an aversive stimulus to increase the likelihood of the behavior being repeated.

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• 20.

### The dog barks, you kick him (DO NOT KICK A DOG!). This reduces the barking. Which quadrant is at play?

• A.

P+ (Positive Punishment, = positieve staf)

• B.

P- (Negative Punishment, = negatieve staf)

• C.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement, = positieve bekrachtiging)

• D.

R-  (Negative Reinforcement, = negaieve bekrachtiging)

A. P+ (Positive Punishment, = positieve staf)
Explanation
Punishment = leads to the dog performing that behaviour less often.
Minus = you stopped doing something

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• 21.

### The dog barks, you leave the room. You repeat this until he learns that barking results in you removing yourself. This reduces the barking. Which quadrant is at play?

• A.

P+ (Positive Punishment, = positieve staf)

• B.

P-  (Negative Punishment, = negatieve staf)

• C.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement, = positieve bekrachtiging)

• D.

R- (Negative Reinforcement, = negatieve bekrachtiging)

B. P-  (Negative Punishment, = negatieve staf)
Explanation
Punishment = your action leads to the dog performing that behaviour less often.
Minus = you removed something (yourself)

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• 22.

### Pick one answer for Part 1 and one answer for Part 2. P+ (Positive Punishment, = positieve straf) means you [part 1] something (e.g. a kick) after the dog performs the behaviour (e.g. barking). As a result, he will perform the behaviour [part 2] often.

• A.

• B.

Part 1: remove

• C.

Part 2: more

• D.

Part 2: less

D. Part 2: less
Explanation
'Add' because '+' 'Less often' because 'P'

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• 23.

### P- (Negative Punishment, = negatieve staf) means you [Part 1] something (e.g. your presence if he likes you) after the dog performs the behaviour (e.g. barking). As a result, he will perform the behaviour [Part 2] often.  Pick one answer for Part 1 and one answer for Part 2.

• A.

• B.

Part 1: remove

• C.

Part 2: more

• D.

Part 2: less

B. Part 1: remove
D. Part 2: less
Explanation
'remove' because '-' 'less' because 'P'

A typical example of P- is withdrawing the opportunity to chase a ball if the dog demand-barks for you to toss the ball. He will bark less often (P) as a result of you removing (-) the ball.

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• 24.

### R+ (Positive Reinforcement, = positieve bekrachtiging) means you [Part 1] something (e.g. a treat) after the dog performs the behaviour on command (e.g. sitting). As a result, he will perform the behaviour [Part 2] often.  Pick one answer for Part 1 and one answer for Part 2.

• A.

• B.

Part 1: removing

• C.

Part 2: more

• D.

Part 2: less

C. Part 2: more
Explanation
'more' because 'R'

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• 25.

### R- (Negative Reinforcement, negatieve bekrachtiging) means you [part 1] something (e.g. stop hanging him by the collar) after the dog performs the behaviour (e.g. sitting) on command. As a result, he will perform the behaviour [part 2] often. Pick one answer for Part 1 and one answer for Part 2.  As a result, he will perform the behaviour [part 2] often.

• A.

• B.

Part 1: remove

• C.

Part 2: more

• D.

Part 2: less

B. Part 1: remove
C. Part 2: more
Explanation
'Remove' because '-' 'More' because 'R'

In horse riding, a typical example is slowing a horse down. You want him to slow down on command, so you say the command, and pull on the reins until he slows down.

Although, you could argue that this is P+, because you are punishing going too fast by adding reign tension (is your head spinning yet?)

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• 26.

### In the context of the quadrants, 'R' (Reinforcement, = bekrachtiging) is more humane and does not involve animal suffering

• A.

True

• B.

False

B. False
Explanation
As a technical term in operant conditioning, 'R' (reinforcement) has nothing to do with the consequence being humane.

'R' strictly means any consequence that will increase the likelihood/frequency of the specific behaviour happening again.

R-, for example, could be zap the dog with current from an e-collar constantly, until he turns in our direction.

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• 27.

### In the context of the quadrants, 'P' (Punishment, = straf) means telling off, shouting at, intimidating or hurting the dog in some way.

• A.

True

• B.

False

B. False
Explanation
As a technical word in operant conditioning, 'P', or 'punishment' has a different meaning than it does in everyday life.

P, as a technical word, means something that decreases the chance that the dog performs the behaviour again.

We use a lot of Punishment at OhMyDog, strictly speaking, but then negative punishment. e.g. turning our back on the dog when he demand-barks. It's a punishment as it aims at decreasing a specific dog behaviour.

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• 28.

### The 'puppy please' exercise - whereby the dog sits when he wants to ask us to do something (e.g. open the garden door for him) - is an example of:

• A.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement, = positieve bekrachtiging)

• B.

R- (Negative Reinforcement, = negatieve bekrachtiging)

• C.

P+ (Positive Punishment, = positieve straf)

• D.

P- (Negative Punishment, = negatieve staf)

A. R+ (Positive Reinforcement, = positieve bekrachtiging)
Explanation
R = will result in him doing the 'puppy please' more often + = we add something (treat)

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• 29.

### The snubby princess is: we cross our arms and turn our head up and away when the dog jumps up, thereby removing attention. As a result, the dog jumps less and less. This is:

• A.

R+ (Positive Reinforcement, = positieve bekrachtiging)

• B.

R-  (Negative Reinforcement, = negaieve bekrachtiging)

• C.

P+ (Positive Punishment, = positieve staf)

• D.

P- (Negative Punishment, = negatieve staf)

D. P- (Negative Punishment, = negatieve staf)
Explanation
'P' because we are reducing the behaviour, 'Minus' because we are removing something that was there (our attention)

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• 30.

### Shaping means:

• A.

Putting a treat in front of the dog's nose like a magnet, and have the dog follow the treat to the desired position.

• B.

Physically positioning the dog into the desired position (e.g. gently pull on the lead to get the dog to follow you to the right spot).

• C.

Rewarding closer and closer approximations to the desired behaviour, gradually raising your criteria until the dog gets it

C. Rewarding closer and closer approximations to the desired behaviour, gradually raising your criteria until the dog gets it
Explanation
Shaping refers to the process of rewarding the dog for gradually improving their behavior and getting closer to the desired behavior. This involves setting criteria for what is considered acceptable behavior and rewarding the dog each time they meet those criteria. Over time, the criteria are raised, and the dog is rewarded for getting even closer to the desired behavior. This method helps the dog understand what is expected of them and encourages them to learn and improve their behavior through positive reinforcement.

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• 31.

### An extinction burst is:

• A.

The highest level of performance/fluency/mastery a dog can achieve on a particular skill.

• B.

The burst of frustration that some dogs have when failing to understand an exercise. Biting the leash in class is a form of extinction burst.

• C.

The temporary intensification of a behaviour that is suddenly no longer rewarded. The dog follows the strategy: "If at first you don't succeed, try louder and harder".

C. The temporary intensification of a behaviour that is suddenly no longer rewarded. The dog follows the strategy: "If at first you don't succeed, try louder and harder".
Explanation
An extinction burst often happens when teaching a dog not to jump up. They jump up? We withdraw attention. At first, the dog will jump higher, and might even add barking and scratching to his repertoire. It is of the highest importance not to crack and give attention during an extinction burst, as it might mean the unwanted behaviour now starts at a more intense level.

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• 32.

### What is the ideal duration of a high-rep practice session focusing on one skill?

• A.

A few seconds

• B.

1-2 minutes

• C.

20 minutes

• D.

1 hour

A. A few seconds
Explanation
The ideal duration of a high-rep practice session focusing on one skill is a few seconds. This suggests that short bursts of intense practice can be more effective than longer sessions. It implies that the key is to focus on quality rather than quantity, ensuring that each repetition is done with full concentration and effort. Short practice sessions allow for better retention of information and prevent mental fatigue, ultimately leading to better skill development.

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• 33.

### How often should the students practice to get results?

• A.

Once every 2-3 days

• B.

5x per day per person, ideally 10x per day with 2 people, thus. In short bursts

• C.

As many times a day as possible, until the dog gets it, even if the students get stressed out by it. A little bit of time investment now will pay off later. They have a dog, they have to invest time in him/her.

A. Once every 2-3 days
Explanation
Students should practice once every 2-3 days in order to get results. This frequency allows for regular practice without overwhelming the students or causing unnecessary stress. Consistency is important, but it is also important to give oneself time to rest and reflect between practice sessions. By practicing every 2-3 days, students can maintain a steady pace of improvement while also allowing themselves time to recharge and process what they have learned.

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• 34.

### What is a high-rep (high-repetition) practice session?

• A.

A short-burst practice session where you practice the behaviour again and again, trying to pack in as many 'yes' moments as possible.

• B.

A long practice session where you practice the behaviour again and again, trying to pack in as many 'yes' moments as possible.

A. A short-burst practice session where you practice the behaviour again and again, trying to pack in as many 'yes' moments as possible.
Explanation
A high-rep (high-repetition) practice session refers to a short-burst practice session where you repeatedly practice a behavior, aiming to maximize the number of successful moments or "yes" moments. This type of practice session focuses on intensive repetition in a condensed period of time to reinforce and improve the desired behavior.

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• Current Version
• Mar 22, 2023
Quiz Edited by
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• Jun 16, 2018
Quiz Created by
Oh_my_dog