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The Clicker Leash will change the way you think about dog training! Your dog performs hundreds of behaviors every day; giving you kisses, digging holes, walking beside you, jumping up, sitting, smelling the grass, laying down, just to name a few. Unfortunately, they don't come preprogrammed to know which behaviors you like and which ones drive you nuts. Instead of using your energy to correct your dog for the behaviors you don't like, with the Clicker Leash you can effectively reward your dog for the behaviors you do like, resulting in a social, well-mannered dog.
If you follow our three easy training steps, the "click" from your Clicker Leash will come to mean "good dog!" Because the click is brief and distinct from most of the sounds your dog hears every day, it will cut through the confusion and let your dog know the exact moment he has done something you like. Because your dog will understand what he had to do to make good things happen, he will be more likely to offer you that behavior again.
If you are already familiar with the benefits of reward-based training, the Clicker Leash will help you be a better trainer. Because your clicker will always be at your fingertips, you will be able to take advantage of countless training opportunities in the real world, not just in class. Never fumble with or lose another clicker again.
With the Clicker Leash, the dog you want is within reach! Follow the three simple steps below and you will be on your way to communicating clearly with your dog, all while building a trusting relationship based on love and respect.
Tail waggin' good times! Experiment with a variety of food treats, toys, play and praise to see what your dog loves. In addition to life rewards like regular meals, access to the outdoors and getting to explore new smells, you will use whatever your dog likes or needs to reward them for the behavior you want to see them repeat in the future.
Click = good dog! Now pair the things your dog loves with the "click" from your Clicker Leash. Your dog doesn't have to do anything to earn the reward at this stage. Simply click and as quickly as possible present the reward. If you are using food, keep your treat size very small so your dog does not get full quickly and you will be able to get lots of practice in. If you are using a toy, interact with your dog for five to ten seconds after you click. Click and reward repeatedly until you start to see your dog's ears perk up, his tail wag or he focuses on you when he hears the click. This usually requires 25-50 repetitions. Now your pooch understands that the click means a reward is on its way and you are ready to start using the Clicker Leash in your training.
If you like it, click it! Now you can let your dog know the exact moment he has done something you like and follow it with a reward. By rewarding your dog for the behavior you like, he will be more likely to offer you that behavior again in the future. If you did a good job of finding out what motivates your dog in step one, you will soon see him trying to figure out what you would like him to do so he can make the clicker go off again!
Once your dog understands that when he hears a "click," good things happen, you can start teaching him various commands and signals to do what you want, when you want.
You can treat these skills like a puzzle that your dog has to figure out. Break the behavior down into small steps and click and reward as he gets closer to the end result you are looking for. No need to correct him if he is on the wrong track, just wait until he does something closer to your goal, click and reward. When your dog accomplishes the goal you have set out, give him five times the regular amount of reward he had been getting up to that point. This is called a jackpot and it will encourage your dog to perform that specific behavior again in the future.
Once your dog is reaching the goal consistently, you can give your command or signal just before you know your dog is going to perform the behavior. With practice, whatever you say or do just before your dog offers a behavior, will become the command for that behavior. As the behavior becomes a habit, you will be able to start fading out your rewards.
If your dog is timid or more hesitant to offer new behaviors you can help them out by luring them into the position you are looking for, then clicking and rewarding with the lure. One of the keys to this training method is to not give any commands when you have the reward in your hand. This is considered bribery and your dog will start to listen only when he sees the reward in your hand. If you have a reward in your hand, pretend you have a piece of tape covering your mouth and don't say anything!
Once your dog understands how to follow his reward into position (usually five to 10 repetitions), keep your reward hidden in a pocket or pouch and see if your dog can follow your empty hand into the position you have been practicing. If your dog is successful, click and produce the hidden reward.
Once you are happy with your dog's behavior, it is time to introduce a verbal command before you get him to follow your hand into position. Try to remain still while the word is coming out of your mouth. If you move while you are speaking, your dog will take longer to learn the word because he will be focused on your movement instead of what you are saying.
Remember to only give your verbal command once. When you repeat commands, your dog learns that you didn't mean what you said the first time and your words will lose their meaning. Give your dog time to think things through. If he seems really stuck, you can help out with your empty hand target. As soon as your dog is in the position you are working on, click and reward.
Make training fun by always setting your dog up for success. Start off where there aren't a lot of distractions like your living room or backyard. Once your dog is consistently responding to your commands in a quiet environment, take your show on the road and start practicing out on your walks, exposing your dog to new and more challenging distractions when he is ready for them. This will be easy to do with your Clicker Leash because you will always have your most important communication tool right at your fingertips. Make sure you practice in every environment where you expect your dog to listen to you. Unlike us humans, they do not generalize well!
For a more detailed look at the steps you can take to help your dog understand what you want, check out our online video tutorials here. To perfect your clicker training skills or to learn how to use your Clicker Leash to help dogs with aggression or other behavioral issues, find a clicker trainer near you through our Clicker Trainer Locator.
Remember to keep things fun! If you aren't having fun, chances are your dog isn't either. If you feel yourself getting frustrated, take a break and come back to the exercise later. Keep your formal practice sessions short and always try to end them with your dog wanting more. With a little time, consistency and patience, you will have the dog you always wanted!
Check out what people are saying about the clicker leash here!