Saturday, January 25, 2014

Beginning Clicker Training

After watching several videos on youtube, I've finally decided to take the plunge and invest in a clicker for the dogs. The clickers I'm using are the Karen Pryor i-click Dog Training Clicker.

The decision to give clicker training a try came mostly from a hope that it will benefit my sensitive, slow Tibetan Terrier boy. Hopefully utilizing the clicker will help eliminate any confusion he might have, and help provide immediate reinforcement.

Up until this point, I was just baiting and using food motivation to work with the dogs. Lassie is incredibly food motivated, and as of this post, she knows: Sit, stand up, play dead, roll over, left-foot touch, right-foot touch, stay, and recall. Izzy on the other hand, is not quite as food motivated (unless it's popcorn) and just knows: Sit, down, stay, and a very selective recall.

The Karen Pryor clicker is the perfect volume for indoor clicker training. I gave it a try last night and within 10 clicks, the dogs were starting to associate good things with the sound.

This morning, I've noticed significant results in Izzy. I've taught him to lay down and crawl on his belly, as well as circle around my legs in a figure eight. He picked it up faster than Lassie! Lassie has a whole arsenal of tricks, but it seems that now when I ask her to do something, she likes to cycle through all of them until she hits the right one. We'll have to work on that.

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