Category Archives: Clicker

Shaping Without a Clicker

Most trainers agree that if there is one thing that the tool called a clicker is useful for in particular, it is for shaping behavior. Shaping consists of marking and reinforcing successive approximations towards a goal behavior. When shaping, the trainer can find … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker | Tagged , | 11 Comments

Dog Training Basics: Getting the Behavior

I think one of the hardest steps for people who cross over to positive reinforcement based training is learning how to get a dog to start performing a behavior. If we have experience with mild force-based methods, such as verbally telling the dog to … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker, Dog training hints, Operant conditioning | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

Summer Punches It

I have learned a lot in the last three months. Yes, that’s how long it has taken for me to get Summer’s target behavior where I really wanted it. Back in September I published a post about the many ways … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker, Cues, Dog training hints, Examples for Teachers, Positive Reinforcement, Training philosophy | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

Teaching A Dog to Back Up

You want to see how to teach a dog to back up without walking into them? Today I’m featuring a video I made about that in 2011 that is quite popular on YouTube, but that I have never shown here. … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker, Dog training hints, Examples for Teachers, Negative Reinforcement, Positive Reinforcement, Reinforcement | Tagged , , | 25 Comments

Using a Training Plan to Retrain Summer’s “Target”

In our last episode, I shared how I messed up Summer’s hand (and object) targeting behavior six ways from Sunday. Now I will share the process of retraining it. When you follow directions from a book, such as the Training … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker, Cues, Dog training hints, Examples for Teachers, Positive Reinforcement, Training philosophy | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments

6 Ways I Messed Up My Dog’s Targeting

Hand targeting is usually suggested as a great behavior for new clicker trainers since it is easy to get and easy to define criteria for. I guess I didn’t read the brochure carefully enough because I messed up hand targeting … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker, Cues, Dog training hints, Examples for Teachers, Positive Reinforcement, Training philosophy | Tagged , , , , , | 16 Comments

A Secret for Training Two Dogs

I think this is as close as I’ll ever come to a “how-to” blog. Here is my usual disclaimer: I am not a professional trainer and I have trained only my own dogs. But there is a secret to training … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker, Cues, Dog training hints, Multiple dogs, Reinforcement | Tagged , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Superstition Ain’t the Way

Definition of a Superstitious Behavior: Accidentally or unintentionally reinforced behavior where a behavior is reinforced but the reinforcement occurred by random chance instead of in accordance with a specific contingency.   —From the Association of Animal Behavior Professionals glossary I wrote when … Continue reading

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Posted in Clicker, Dog training hints, Operant conditioning | Tagged , , , , | 26 Comments