Clicker Training as an Effective Dog Training Tool
Urgent Press Release For Dog Owners:
Clicker Training, is a training approach based on operant conditioning which comes from the fact that the reinforcer make use of a small mechanical noisemaker that produces clicking sound called the clicker. Clicker training can be used to train animals other than dogs like horses, cats, pigeons, etc.
The real challenge when training a dog, is in communicating accurately and at the right time when the dog is behaving properly. Conventionally when a dog did behave correctly, you praise him only after he move to some other behavior which may not be a desirable behavior and thus strengthening something that you might not want. Besides the right timing of the communication, your tone, loudness of your voice, pronunciation and speed may send misleading signal to your dog.
This contradiction is resolved by clicker training. Clicker Training create the clicking sound as a brief signal that dog can understand almost at once when he behave desirably which solve the problem of timing and prevent the problem of variation in comparison with the use of the trainer voice.
Clicker training do have its down side when too much dependence is placed on the physical clicker to signal to the dog, especially when there come a situation when you do not have the clicker on you or in a place where sound can be a problem such as in hunting environment or in a certain public places.
You should strive to combine the training of your dog with voice or hand command jointly with the clicker. The clicker can be used as the preliminary training as more command and cues are added. In this way by the time you start to fade out the clicker training there would not be any trouble communicating with your dog.
The aim in practicing clicker training program is to create association between the clicker sound and reward in your dog understanding. This association is created by clicking the clicker each and every time the dog behave desirably and after that giving him the reward which can come in a tasty treat that can be consume almost immediately. This is done repetitively from 10 -15 times per session. Some dog make the association faster than others.
One of the procedures to know if your dog has made the association is by permitting your dog focus to be shifted to other things before clicking. If the dog at once looks toward you upon you clicking the clicker, then most probably the dog has made the association. Once this is done, you can use the clicker to indicate desired behaviors. This is done by immediately clicking and rewarding your dog after the dog execute the desired behavior. The key is in the timing, clicking too early or too late diminish the effectiveness of the training sessions.
Again as said before, clicker training is only one of the training method, and it has its disadvantages, combining this training method with the others will improve the effectiveness of training your dog. Do learn and study the many practical methods you can do with this training method that can make this training a more fun and meaningful way which is so many that simply cannot be cover in this article.
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