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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all...I am finally done with my finals so I am back. Missed everyone.

Has anyone tried clicker training their maltese? I have found a wonderful trainer but she uses clicker training and lots of positive reinforcement to train. Lacey is doing great but we need some refreshment on our basic training plus she is starting to get to the point if we tell her to do something she thinks about it before doing it. So back to training for both of us. This trainer understands toy breeds and how I don't/won't put a collar on her. Some trainers I have spoken with insisted on a collar around her neck. Lacey wears a harness and this trainer has no problems with that. She has only two other dogs in this class and both are on the smaller size but if Lacey looks or acts scared she can seperate us until Lacey feels more comfortable around the other two dogs. Lacey can be a little bit nervous when she is in new situations so this trainer is being very understanding in that regard. So if anyone has tried the clicker training let me know what you thought of it. I just want Lacey to relearn her basics and be a little more comfortable around new people.
 

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Clicker training worked great with Peanut and it's going really well with Tic now. The only bad thing is that when I bring the boys to work I constantly click the retractable pen (one of many annoying habits I have
) and the boys come over to me and sit to wait for the treat
I really found that it helps the boys know what behavior I am rewarding.
 

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Originally posted by JMM@May 13 2005, 07:02 PM
I'm a big fan of using the clicker or another marker for training. The dogs catch on really fast and enjoy it. It is an ideal method to train any dog, especially toy breeds.
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just curious, at what age would you consider it too late to start?
 

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There is no such thing as too late to start. Dogs who are trained in one manner and then crossed over to clicker training do tend to be less into playing inventive games (like 100 things to do with a box or free shaping behaviors). They tend to want a little lure. No big deal. With time most dogs will learn to try something new.
 

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I totally recommend clicker training. We started clicker training Izzy as soon as we brought her home. Izzy doesn't know it's training, she thinks it's a fun game we play. In the beginning we did it every single day several times a day. Now we are down to one or two times a week just for fun or when I want her to learn a new behavior, such as walking into her overnight bed-crate on command instead of me putting/pushing her in there.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks all. I have heard of clicker training but have never tried it or known anyone you uses it. Lacey is a good little girl but we both need to go back to training to relearn somethings and learn some new ones. It has been very hard to find a trainer in my area that understands toy dogs and will let me have her in a harness not a collar. I can't believe how many trainers want her in a training collar and I just flat out refuse. My old trainer is great but he only does one on one with the dog. He takes the dogs and he trains them and then shows the owners how. Lacey learned alot but this time I want to be more involved with her training and learn how to do things myself. Plus I am hoping we both enjoy it and that Lacey will become a little more comfortable in new places.
 

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I researched many different trainers in our area and the different approaches they all had to training, and I found operant conditioning surpassed all others. It is a stress free and enjoyable way to train your animal. We opted for private in home classes and it was wonderful because it wasn't so much about her training Tavish to sit using a clicker, but about her teaching me to train Tavish to sit using a clicker.
It was wonderful, he enjoyed all of our classes together, and it was a very positive experience for all of us.
 

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Originally posted by Lexi's Mom@May 13 2005, 01:36 PM
Oh, clicker training is great!  Lexi did great with it. Clicker Training
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Thanks JMM, and thanks Kristi for that site! I bought a couple clickers to try, so now I am to try to learn how to do it
 

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Originally posted by Holliberry+May 20 2005, 10:49 AM-->
<!--QuoteBegin-Lexi's Mom
@May 13 2005, 01:36 PM
Oh, clicker training is great!  Lexi did great with it. Clicker Training
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=62146
Thanks JMM, and thanks Kristi for that site! I bought a couple clickers to try, so now I am to try to learn how to do it

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[/B][/QUOTE]
Just remember, your timing is really important! I don't know what was wrong with me the first time I tried. I had serious delayed reactions that day
I started late with Peanut after he was already trained a little and someone I spoke to said that the first day or two you could just say sit, click and treat jsut to get them accustomed to what the click means. Good luck!! It's really a great way to teach.
 

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Originally posted by littlepeanut+May 20 2005, 11:14 AM-->
Originally posted by [email protected] 20 2005, 10:49 AM
<!--QuoteBegin-Lexi's Mom
@May 13 2005, 01:36 PM
Oh, clicker training is great!  Lexi did great with it. Clicker Training
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=62146


Thanks JMM, and thanks Kristi for that site! I bought a couple clickers to try, so now I am to try to learn how to do it

<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=63743

[/QUOTE]
Just remember, your timing is really important! I don't know what was wrong with me the first time I tried. I had serious delayed reactions that day
I started late with Peanut after he was already trained a little and someone I spoke to said that the first day or two you could just say sit, click and treat jsut to get them accustomed to what the click means. Good luck!! It's really a great way to teach.

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My trainer had us practice (away from the dogs) by clicking as someone walked. We were to try and time our click with their foot (left, right , or both) steping down. It is a good way of improving your timing. When you start training click as they do the action. So as they go to sit, as they come, as they lay down, etc.
 

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Asking and clicking for an alternative behavior can be very effective at eliminating barking. The clicker simply marks the correct behavior. It is used to train the behavior. Once it is reliably on cue the clicker is not used, just the reward.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Okay all we started clicker training Saturday. The first time I clicked Lacey peed! She was so scared of the noise. I put the clicker away for the rest of the day and tried again on Sunday. She will now sit and let me click and give her a treat. This week we are to work on her getting used to the clicker, sitting and maybe coming when called. She is a little scared of the clicker so I put it in my pocket and click. My training said she is doing great and we should just do short lessons throughout the day to get her used to the noise.
 

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I would load the clicker before teaching behaviors with it.

Get a small pile (10-20) of super yummy treats...click, treat, click, treat, etc. quickly through the pile. Do this 3x/day for a couple of days. This will help desensitize the dog to the clicker and associate the click with receiving a treat.

Be careful on timing your click. You should be clicking as her butt hits the floor, not after.

You might buy an I-click as the sound is a bit more muted. You definately need a lanyard or zinger for it because it will click in your pocket on its own if you leave it there.
http://clickertraining.com/store/?item=newclicker
 

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JMM... after reading your last post... does that mean you can use the clicker with barking the same way as the sit command? Click when Kodie stops barking and then reward?
 

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Absolutely you can. We often forget to reward the good behavior and focus on the bad behavior (who rewards their dog when they are laying quietly? you never think about it). This method works great for dogs with nervous habits (like whining).
 
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