Clicker Training 101- Lesson 4 – Is Clicker Training Right For Your Dog?

Lesson 4 - Is Clicker Training Right For Your Dog?

When it comes to our pets, we are a society that’s based on blind obedience. Many of us want our dogs to obey us without question, to be obedient because we tell them to.

But many more dog owners want something more. That is, we want our dogs to be obedient, but also enjoyable to be around and for the dogs themselves to be happy.

Some believe that clicker training is the route to this happy state. But it might not be for everyone. Let’s consider some things about clicker training.

Although you will learn more about how clicker training actually works in the next chapter, you do likely know enough by now to understand that the behavior is brought about in the dog via an inexpensive and easy-to-operate hand clicker.

That method of training is successful for most dogs on whom it’s used, but it does take a bit of work and patience on the part of the dog owner.

So how can you know if clicker training is right for you? Let’s consider a few questions.

  • First, do you think you have the time to always work with the clicker and not rely entirely (or at all) on your voice to give commands? (The clicker method of training your dog requires that your voice only give the command; the clicker – combined with a treat – gives the positive feedback.)
  • Can you take the time to watch some videos and learn exactly how this method of training works? (You can take a class in clicker training, or you can watch videos that are available for free or for a cost online. Most will easily and effectively teach the clicker training method.)
  • Are you a dog owner who wants complete obedience from your dog? (If so, this might not be the best method for you.)
  • Do you have children in the house? Are they old enough to help with the training? (While not necessary, it is helpful to have a household where everyone can use the same commands with the same reward system.)
  • Are you open-minded about different types of dog training? (This method is contrary to the usual methods of training our dogs, or those methods that the majority of us are accustomed to. It takes an open mind to understand it and welcome it.)
  • How old is your dog? (There is no ideal age for clicker training, though most experts would say that as with any training or behavior medication strategy, it’s best to start earlier rather than later.)
  • Have you ever trained a dog before? (Again, while not necessary, it’s helpful if you have trained a previous dog or if you have experience with dog training. A basic knowledge of commands is useful as is the knowledge and experience of how to work with dogs that are being trained in some basic obedience standards.)
  • Do you want to train your dog the very best way? (If so, most experts agree that clicker training is the way to go. It’s gentle, humane, happy, simple and inexpensive. We can’t say much more for it to recommend itself.)

In the end, most dog owners are ideal candidates for training their dogs via clicker training. They have knowledge of commands, know how to interact with their dogs and have some basic knowledge of what dog training is all about.

In the next chapter, we will extensively cover exactly how to clicker train your dog. We’ll give the basics, some hints and tips and walk you through a fictional account of a dog owner working to train his dog.

In the following parts, we’ll look at how to handle things if something goes wrong or if you have problems while clicker training and where to go for more information.

Video Examples


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