Clicker Training on walks?

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Clicker Training on walks?

Post by mscout99 » Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:10 pm

I just started clicker training with my 8-month old lab puppy mix. He's caught on really well with some of the basic commands, but I'm wondering if it's something I can utilize on walks. He reacts inappropriately by barking in a high pitch, and acts like he REALLY wants to go and play with the other dog. He's NEVER shown aggression to another dog, but it's still pretty embarassing when I take him out.
When I train Mater (yes, my kids had a hand in naming him) in the house with the clicker, I click and treat right at the moment he gives me the desired behavior. He now associates the clicker with something pleasant, so would it completely throw him off if I click when he sees another dog walk by? I would hate to click when the other dog is in visual contact and then he reacts the way he does when he sees them.
I've seen Victoria use the clicker on walks on the show, but I'm pretty unsure myself with how to do it without completely messing him up. Any clicker training experts here that can help me out?

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Re: Clicker Training on walks?

Post by Noobs » Sat Aug 21, 2010 2:38 pm

You can use the clicker outside - I personally don't because there are too many distractions and my dog doesn't generally hear it then...on the other hand my dog has really over the top reactions so I've decided not to use the clicker outside and just use my voice and a vocal marker ("yes" for example).

You're right, you don't want to accidentally click him for an undesired behavior. It will take some practice, but you can probably get a good read on how far away a dog has to be for your dog to react. Make sure you are OUTSIDE of that area before you try to click for calm behavior. Does that make sense?

If you are inside the threshold and he's already reacting, just about-face and get out of dodge.

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