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Clicker Training for Dogs

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There are many ways to train dogs and what’s right for one person may not right for another. All methods work in their own way and this is yet just another approach that is ideally to suited to most newcomers to dog training which you will love.

Positive reinforcement works fast!
The problem for most dog owners is they don’t understand or are not familiar with the process on how dogs learn good wanted behaviour and unwanted bad behaviour. It is very simple and most inexperienced dog owners see this process as complex which it is not, in fact the success lies in the simplicity of it and it requires the dog owner to be focused and patient in the delivery of the training and instruction which is often difficult for dog owners to grasp.

Let’s assume you are a struggling and inexperienced dog owner with a disobedient and unruly canine.

Most of the time the problem is the owner or at least it would be fair to say half the problem is the owner due to lack of knowledge and experience.

Look at it this way!

For ease of explanation, let’s say that every given moment for a dog is a blank canvas just waiting to receive an instruction, an experience or an impression which he then receives through its senses and forms that experience, sensation or impression on its mind and whatever that is associated to will at that time or later on, strengthen and reinforce that impression or experience and the dog will then become motivated towards it further or motivated away from it or it will either want it or not want it, like it or dislike it.

The dog is constantly taking on-board information throughout the day developing likes and dislikes.

What most inexperienced dog owners do without knowing or realising it, is reinforce and strengthen the faulty/bad behaviour thus making it worse. This is where the other half of the problem comes in, the dog is doing one thing and you are doing another and making it worse.

Here’s a quick and simple explanation of clicker training!

You have in your hand a small plastic clicking device which is included within this clicker training course and when you’re dog does something you want him to do or he does something correct, you click the clicker and then follow it with some yummy food, a treat reward immediately, therefore associating and combining both the click, the sound with the reward and delicious mouth-watering food.

Ideally, the food you are using as the treat or as a bribe should be little snippets of the most delicious food that he does not normally receive such as small balls of cheese or slices of sausage or beef.

It helps to use high quality mouth-watering treats for this specific training session as opposed to dried low level junk food from a packet off the supermarket shelf because you will get a more attentive and focused dog when he knows you’ve got top-quality meat or treats in your hand. They are clever and super compliant when you have the best treats!
Each time your dog does the correct request such as sit, lie down or come then he will receive the treat after he hears the CLICK.

Dogs learn by association and that includes pleasure or pain and it’s the same process involved in humans when we like or dislike something due to the associations, whether we realise it or not and this also applies to fears and phobias or insecurities within the dog world.

In your first few training sessions the clicks won’t mean too much to the dog and he may be more interested in sniffing your hand to see what it is you’ve got in it.

After a few times your dog will notice that each time there is a CLICK there then follows a delicious mouth-watering treat and you will then notice that he starts to pay serious and intense attention to the CLICKER in your hand because in no time at all he will know there are delicious treats coming – such bribery!

The food that follows the click is called the primary reinforcer and this means it doesn’t need to be liked to learn it as it is actually NEEDED for life or survival.

Reinforcers enhance or promote and strengthen the behaviour which we wish to create in the first place.

For example: You want the dog to sit and say ‘sit’ WAIT and WAIT and WAIT and then the dog sits and you CLICK and then you offer the treat, the treat ‘reinforces’ this behaviour.

Please note dogs also learn bad behaviour in a similar way, this is why it’s important when you see dog trainers or professional sheep dog trainers who remain still with no unnecessary hand gestures and they only say one thing at a time so that they are delivering one clear command and instruction so as not to clutter the situation as opposed to inexperienced dog owners waving their arms around creating all sorts of bad distraction energy which is confusing for the dog.

The more you practice the sit command or any particular command/instruction with the click followed by the treat, the stronger the desired result will become.

In other words the more you reinforce the behaviour by repetition of the same process, that behaviour becomes established until it becomes automatic. You are in effect simply fast tracking the dog to learn something in a targeted and directed manner.

If you keep repeating the sit command SIT+ CLICK+TREAT= COMPLIANCE! You achieve the desired result and through repetition of this and the receiving of the reward your dog will sit quicker than you want him to as they know wants coming next.

If you stick with just the one command to start with in order to establish the dog senses with the click, your expectation, the results, the reward and the praise of high toned reassuring words will turn your dog around in no time at all.

This is why punishment of any kind must be completely outlawed and anyone punishing their dog is in the dark ages!

Taking each piece clearly and precisely at a time without introducing anything else into the session is important so when you’re sitting, it’s just sitting, when you’re calling, it’s just calling and when it’s walking it’s just walking, partitioning off each instruction and request using the command/instruction/keyword then the click then the reward and not cluttering the session with anything else – keep focused on what you are doing.

Now it’s established and a neural pathway is formed in the brain the same as humans and the dog will now automatically perform the act or behaviour without the reward or the treat and after a short period of time you can then remove the click so the only thing you have to do is say ‘sit’ and the dog will sit without any clicking or without any food or praise because it has taken over and that behaviour is now established the same way as a bad behaviour is.

What you and the clicker and the reward treat is doing is setting this up for it to happen automatically, therefore punishing dogs for doing things such as soiling the floor in the house or chewing something is perfectly natural and normal for them to do and one of the worst things you can do is publish them or deprive them for it because it would just set up other associations to their existing faulty behaviour and create more harm to the well being of the animal. Creating psychological and mental disorders and yes dogs do have mental disorders or dysfunction and other symptoms like anxiety, depression and separation issues.

Half the problem is always the owner!

This clicker training uses a revolutionary new method of dog training that is above anything else, kind and simple and safe to use and it is also fun and helps you and your dog build a stronger bond and then your dog will start to see that you are reacting to him when he does the correct thing and dogs love to be praised for doing the correct things.

Clicker training can be used for many problems especially un-doing undesirable negative behaviours and this course will show you how.

Once established the basic principles and techniques of training you can use it with anything to build upon in the right direction.

Remember, clicker training came from the world of dolphins!
There are many ways to train dogs and what’s right for one person may not right for another. All methods work in their own way and this is yet just another approach that is ideally to suited to most newcomers to dog training which you will love.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Clicker Training Diploma Course

If you would like to learn more about clicker training for dogs either for your own benefit or as a qualification then you may be interested in this Course.  Learn More……. 

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