Monday, January 28, 2013

Back to the basics....How to use the clicker

Today I thought I would go over how to start using the clicker.  If you are someone who has heard about them and thought, well that sounds good, but really how do I get started.  Well here you go:

First, pick up your choice of clicker.  My favorites are the "Star" clicker and the "Big button" clicker

Next pick your choice of treats, something easy to give out, and something they can eat very quickly (or if your dog is a toy nut, and not so hot on treat, use a favorite toy).  Make sure the treat has a strong smell factor for your dog, their sense of smell is akin to our sense of taste, the reason they "wolf" their food and treats down is because they don't taste as much as they enjoy the smell.  The treats I like to use the most are the Greenies Pill Pockets, the capsule size ones.  They come 30 to a bag, and just one can be broken up into 10-20 small bite size treats.  So really one bag has about 300 treats per bag!
They come in Chicken, Peanut butter, Beef, Hickory Smoke, and if your dog has allergies, they also come in Duck!

The third thing to do is bring your dog in a quiet room, or by yourself in the backyard. Call his name, when he looks at you, click the quickly offer a small bit of your chosen treat.  Wait till he is looking away again, call his name, and as soon as he looks at you, click and quickly treat.  Now in the beginning, you will need to treat fairly quickly, but after he has it down that the click means a treat is coming you will easily have 30 seconds to get the treat to him (which is quite a bit of time).  Do this 5-6 times until your dog is looking at you pretty quick when you call his name.  If they look like they are waiting for the treat as soon as you have clicked you have your foundation laid!

Here is a clip of Roxy and I to help show you what I mean. Or just watch it below...


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