Monday, November 8, 2010

Clicker training-- keep it simple, silly...

Mary Hunter writes a wonderful blog about her experience clicker training a variety of animals (mostly horses and now, two new pet rats).  The principals of clicker training a horse or a rat or a whale or a fish are exactly the same as they are for clicker training a dog. 

Exactly the same.

So are you smarter than a 5th grader?  Is your dog smarter than a rat?  Your dog certainly has a larger and more complex brain than a rat (with all due respect to rats, which are fine creatures with a lot of intelligence). 

In this post on her blog, she gives some important reminders of how to set up your training sessions so your totally-novice student (the animal) can be most successful and can focus on the training session at hand.

1. Remove Distractions

2. Limit the environment
3. Use a high value treat
4. Plan for optimal food delivery
5. Keep sessions short

She has good stuff to say about each of these points.  Check it out.

Happy training!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for linking to my post, I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    I won't tell the rats that you said dogs have more intelligence. :)

    Interestingly, our dog's new FAVORITE reinforcer is getting to go into my room and stare at the rats. Haven't exactly figured out how to use this within training sessions. Although, after a good session, I'll often let her go in there and watch them for awhile.