Clicker Training   7 comments

I was catching up on my reading and found a blog expounding on the beauty of clicker training. I agree. Clicker training was a beautiful bonding experience with Checkers. She’d hear that sound and come running for Training Time. With Miss D, not so much. The sound the clicker makes scares her off. 

The first thing you have to do before beginning clicker training is to “load the clicker.” You grab a handful of treats. Then get your dog’s attention and click, then give her a treat. Click. Treat. Click. Treat. Soon she’ll associate the sound of the clicker with getting a treat and will do anything you ask if it gets you to make that sound again.

Unfortunately, not so with Miss D. She didn’t want anything to do with anything she associated with that awful sound. Three clicks and she wouldn’t touch the treat. Wouldn’t come near it. Wouldn’t even look at it. She loves food, but those first few treats stayed right where they were, in the middle of the room, for a week, before I picked them up and tossed them. Those treats were verboten in Miss D’s mind.

So, in our house we use the word “YES” instead of a clicker.

7 responses to “Clicker Training

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  1. Actually she is pretty smart in her own way. Something associated with sound has taught her to be very cautious. I wonder what happened to her as a puppy that makes her so cautious… or limited vision? She is a very lovable, but curiouser and curiouser dog.


    • true. she reacts with panic when startled by unusual sounds. We don’t know what happened in those first 6-7 years of her life. and you know I think she has vision problems, even though the vet has never found any evidence.


  2. We are “clickers” too, but we stuck in click+treat modus since we began. I like it, get a treat only for attending the clicker – good deal, huh?


  3. I started using the clicker the day after Doggy arrived, at first he wouldn’t care for it a bit, not until I found the right treat, hotgods seem to have done the trick. Now it works like a charm, he does whatever you ask him to.


  4. We haven’t tried clicker training b/c we think Prescott would respond just as Miss D would, but running away from that awful unusual sound. We also have no idea what happened to him his first 4-5 years, but being terrified of loud sounds is the only part we’ve figured out.


    • True. Miss D and I tried to load the clicker several times before I finally decided to simply use “YES” as our marker instead. I use the clicker now as an attention-getter. If she’s starting to lose focus and get aggressive on our walks, the clicker’s sound is unusual enough to get her to stop for a second and bring her away from the “red-zone”


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