First Day Of Clicker Training - Some Questions

Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by heart goes boOm, Sep 8, 2011.

  1. heart goes boOm New Member

    after lurking around the forum, i see there's a lot of use of clicker training, so i decided to get one for my pup... i'm hoping he will learn tricks faster. but i have a few questions!

    1. is it still necessary to use the clicker once he learns the command? i apologize if that seems like a duh question.
    2. will it confuse the dog if you only use clicker training half the time? like... what if you're teaching him a new trick with the clicker but then you want to practice the new trick but the clicker is not around so you just praise and treat?
    3. i bought the clicker today and i was charging the clicker (that's the term, right? :)) and then after a few clicks he started doing the newest trick we are learning (shame) is it not considered charging the clicker if i decided to start saying shame, then he does the trick, i click then treat at that point? for what it's worth, i did the charging the clicker exercise twice before this incident.

    i hope i'm not messing my pup up!

  2. jackienmutts Honored Member

    The clicker is used to mark the exact moment your pup gives you the behavior you're looking for, and to act as the bridge between the behavior and the reward. A human can "click" (and thereby get that message to the dog) a lot faster than they can say oh, good dog (and leave the dog thinking, ok, for sitting?, for staying?, for giving my paw? ... cuz all those can happen in a few seconds). No dumb questions - no, you don't have to continue to "click" once the dog learns the command, but if your dog isn't doing it quickly, you can continue using the clicker to speed up the dogs reaction. If you don't happen to have your clicker, but are grabbing a few moments to work with your dog, some people will make a click sound with their tongues as a subsitute, or just say YES, or whatever your word is, and immed treat. One thing you do want to remember, whenever you click, even if you do it by accident - always follow it with a treat (even if what you clicked for isn't exactly what you wanted). First rule of clicker training - click ALWAYS means treat.

    It's really hard to mess your pup up in clicker training - once they catch on to "click means treat", they'll do anything for it. Your pup will see that clicker in your hand, and start throwing everything he knows at you, trying to get that 'click'. :p "Charging" the clicker is something done at the very beginning, to teach the dog that "click" means treat. Seems yours caught on very quickly to that, so just keep on going, don't look back!! :) Most of all, have fun!!!
  3. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    sounds like you are doing great! also, DO look over the tutorials in the "CLASSROOM" sign up above, i have learned tons from watching Jean training his dogs.

    here are some 'reminders' posted by Jean, which support Jakcie's post above:

    (that link is actually one of the more advanced tricks, actually, but, the reminders are still true no matter what cue you are working on)
    Jean likes this.
  4. Anneke Honored Member

    The way I charge the clicker before I start training is: I take my pouch with the treats and let my dog see the clicker. Then I click and treat 3 or 4 times. My dog doesn't have to do anything for these clicks. It is just a reminder for him that we are going to work. Mostly when they see me taking out the clicker, they come running, as clicker means food:D
    But my dogs already know the clicker.
    Sounds like your dog is one to catch on quickly!
    And I use the clicker for tricks they learned the normal way too. Sometimes to finetune the trick, sometimes just because i put an "old trick" between trainingsessions of a new trick. So they have a high succesrate and get reïnforced, so they keep working and thinking.
    And like Jackienmutts , if I don't have my clicker, I use my markerword YES. Since that is shorter than Good boy.
  5. what the fuzz New Member

    1. is it still necessary to use the clicker once he learns the command? i apologize if that seems like a duh question.

    No, but there is a period of time between when you add the cue and when you increase other aspects of the behavior (duration, distance, distractions) that you may want to keep using the clicker to further communicate what is expected.


    2. will it confuse the dog if you only use clicker training half the time? like... what if you're teaching him a new trick with the clicker but then you want to practice the new trick but the clicker is not around so you just praise and treat?

    Not at all. You use the clicker as an "explanation"- it tells the dog exactly what you want. You can train without it as well, just not as precisely. Your dog will not be confused if you are not using the clicker.


    3. i bought the clicker today and i was charging the clicker (that's the term, right? :)) and then after a few clicks he started doing the newest trick we are learning (shame) is it not considered charging the clicker if i decided to start saying shame, then he does the trick, i click then treat at that point? for what it's worth, i did the charging the clicker exercise twice before this incident.

    There is no rule that says you cannot immediately start marking behaviors when charging the clicker- however, when clicker training the first behavior you teach/mark/heavily reinforce is likely to become one of the dogs "default" behaviors- where if they are confused or unsure they will offer that behavior.

    Have fun!

Share This Page

 
 
 
Real Time Analytics