Well, I began training with the clicker last night. So now Ive got a few questions.
1) It was amazing watching Rayden's reaction. Following theinstructions with the clicker, the first 2-3 sessions are "click = treat" Just click treat click treat. Rayden would watch, looking from my face to the clicker. So I just started clicking each time he made eye contact. After the 25 clicks (recommended first session) he was burning holes in my head he was staring at me so hard.
2) Cypher (1 year old lab mix) had quite the opposite reaction. He wassitting on the floor and I gave him click and a treat. He stared treats to clicker, waiting. click treat click treat. But around #7, he started acting afraid and cringing every time I clicked. 3 clicks later, he wouldnt even look at/accept a treat and just cringed on the floor. I waited a couple hours, put tape on the clicker to soften the sound, as recommended. at the first click he urinated on the floor and ran yelping away. I went after him, to see where he went and he slunk further away, going under the bed to hide. He didnt come out until potty time before bed. He still wont make eye contact with me this morning.
So, can anyone offer me any ideas? I have no idea what could have made him so afraid of it?? Im positive that nothing happened to him during the first session, he was just sitting on the floor beside the couch. Should I just leash him and continue? Leave him in the room while working with Rayden so he sees that Rayden isnt afraid of it? Just forget the clicker all together as far as he is concerned?
I was recommended clickersolutions.com and will check there also
thanks in advance,
dainerra
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Well, I began training with the clicker last night. So now Ive got a few questions. 1) It was ... so he sees that Rayden isnt afraid of it? Just forget theclicker all together as far as he is concerned?

lol My collie did that too (well, not so bad...he just ran and hid until I left him alone) the first time I tried the clicker around him.

So I spent a hour going "click-a-click-a-click-a" and driving everyone nuts and he got over it.
I think some dogs are really sensitive to the noise that it makes, but they can get over it once they figure out it's a good noise.

Sometimes it helps to get their favorite treat the collie is in LOVE with marshmallows (he knows what the word "marshmallow" means) and that helped too.

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I think some dogs are really sensitive to the noise that it makes, but they can get over it once they figure out it's a good noise.

Image was frightened of it at first. In her case I put it away for a few months and she was fine when we came back to it later (I think she'd gotten used to hearing me work with Emmett with the clicker). In the case of this pup I'd probably look for a different kind of thing to make the sound, like a ballpoint pen or something quiet/gentle. Clickers really are pretty harsh sounding.

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lol My collie did that too (well, not so bad...he just ran and hid untilI left him alone) the first ... their favorite treat the collie is in LOVE with marshmallows (he knows what the word "marshmallow" means) and that helped too.

wow Im so glad to hear that. I will also just leave him in the room while I work with Rayden, that should help him see that its nothing scary to anyone else. Also,I will up his treats to bologna and see if that helps.

He wasnt bothered by the noise in the beginning, that is what was weird. I will also keep the tape on when actually working with him for a while. it does make a difference in the way that it sounds.
thanks for the help!
dainerra
wow I'm so glad to hear that.

Make that 3 dogs who were noise sensitive. I didn't know what I was doing at first so I didn't charge the clicker properly. Cubbe liked the treat well enough but was running from the sound of the clicker.

Lia
wow I'm so glad to hear that.

Make that 3 dogs who were noise sensitive. I didn't know what I was doing at first so I didn't charge the clicker properly. Cubbe liked the treat well enough but was running from the sound of the clicker. Lia

One thing you can do is substitute a retractable pen for the clicker. That's a much softer click, and may work. But desensitization also works.

One thing to remember is that dogs can learn VERY fast on the clicker. If the behavior you're getting is not the desired end behavior, very quickly up the ante. So, if you want your dog to wave, first click when they lift a foot, but quickly ask for more. If you keep clicking for just lifting the foot you'll cement that behavior and it will be difficult to get the dog to expand it.
One thing you can do is substitute a retractable pen for the clicker. That's a much softer click, and may work. But desensitization also works.

that may be a good idea. I will try that. He just seems so tortured with the clicker. I only did about 6 clicks before I stopped. Wanted to end it on a slightly upbeat note.. IE he actually took the treat from my hand without cowering.
One thing to remember is that dogs can learn VERY fast on the clicker.

yes, I can already see that with Rayden. The instructions said to just click=treat the first 2-3 sessions so that they get the idea of what the click means. So I just waited until he was looking at my face to click. By the second session, it was with actual eye contact. Now, he makes eye contact whenever you say his name. He is already much more focused.

dainerra
yes, I can already see that with Rayden. The instructions said to just click=treat the first 2-3 sessions so that ... with actual eye contact. Now, he makes eye contact whenever you say his name. He is already much more focused.[/nq]It doesn't take 2 or 3 sessions. Honest. Once he understands that click = treat, there's no need to delay training. Start clicking when he sits, when he downs, when he cocks his head whatever. Try an experiment. Take a tea towel (or bathroom towel for that matter) and loop it through your stove handle or over a doorknob. See if you can get him to pull it. Start by clicking him for looking at it. After he understands looking at it gets a click (probably just a couple of clicks, when you can tell he "gets" it, up the ante.

Next time, don't click when he looks at it. You may get some exasperated eye rolls (I'm LOOKING AT IT. Can't you see??) but then he should, eventually, either move closer or poke at it in frustration. Click that. As soon as he understands touching it gets what he wants, up the ante again. He may get frustrated and grab it. CLICK. Then ask him to grab it and take it off the knob/handle. Click. You've got a behavior.

You can teach the dog to take things out of a box and put them back in. To sit on a chair. Almost anything, just start general then go specific, and click the moment he demonstrates movement in the correct direction, upping the ante the moment he understands what you want as he's travelling the path you want him to take.
yes, I can already see that with Rayden. The instructions ... you say his name. He is already much more focused.

It doesn't take 2 or 3 sessions. Honest. Once he understands that click = treat, there's no need to delay ... upping the ante the moment he understands what you want as he's travelling the path you want him to take.

Great stuff Robin. This one is getting printed. Not that I won't recall most of what you posted here, but more that I can hang it on my refrig for reminder to train and shape new behaviors.
Gwen
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