Puppy Clicker Training: Puppy training that works like magic.
Puppy Clicker training is one of the easiest and most effective ways to begin training a puppy. A clicker is a small plastic or metal device that makes a very distinctive clicking sound. The idea is to train your dog to associate the sound of the clicker with your approval.
To begin clicker training a puppy you first have to get the puppy to associate the clicker with something pleasant. This is pretty easy. All you need is your clicker and a handful of treats. Choose a place for puppy clicker training where the puppy won’t be easily distracted. Get your pup interested in the treats, then click once and give him a treat.
Repeat this several times, clicking and rewarding, until he learns to associate the treat with the clicking sound. This is called ‘charging your clicker’. To test whether your puppy ‘gets it’, click once but don’t give the treat. If the pup looks at you expecting the treat, he has made the association. Now that you have ‘charged’ your clicker, the next step in puppy clicker training is to associate the clicker with a particular behavior.
Puppy Clicker Training Example
Here’s a simple example.
With the puppy in a standing position, hold a treat in front of your his nose, just out of his reach. Slowly move the treat towards him at above his eye level. As the threat passes over his head he will try to keep it in sight, forcing him to sit.
As soon as he does so, clicks and reward. Repeat this action until he understands that sitting earns a click and a reward, then add the verbal command, “sit”. Now start delaying the time between the click and the treat. Soon the puppy will begin to understand that, even if he does not get a treat immediately, the click always means something good. Start making small changes to the click and treat routine. Don’t give the treat on every click, sometimes just praise him or give affection. In this way, he begins to regard the click as a reward in its own right.
Anytime he hears the click, he will know that he did something good. As dogs are generally eager to please, the sound of the clicker becomes an incentive for him to obey your commands. You can teach your puppy any number of commands and tricks using the clicker, making puppy clicker training one of the most effective ways of puppy training.