Dog Trainers Must Shape the Behaviour They Want

The trainer uses positive reinforcement to ‘shape’ the behaviour they want from the dog. If trainers are in the habit of chanting commands (sit,sit,sit.) while attempting to push, pull or tug the dog into the desired position, it will be difficult for them to change their behaviour. But trainers must change if they want to experience the quick, precise response that clicker dog training can achieve.

The clicker is primarily a construction tool that should be used as needed to build behaviours. Clicker dog training allows you to train your dog with maximum efficiency, in a fair and caring way. It allows you to build a positive relationship with your dog, based upon mutual respect, trust and understanding.
So, take the plunge! Learn how to use the clicker and get ready for your dog and yourself to enjoy both the experience and the exciting results you will achieve with the clicker dog training method.

How Shaping Behaviour Works

If you want to teach your dog to beg, this is one way you can shape the action. Work it out first, put it in writing then work through each step.

  1. Have the dog stand, looking directly at you.
    Click & reward
  2. With the dog standing, looking at you, take a treat and hold it just above and slightly behind his head. He should raise his head and lean it backwards. To do this he will have to sit so he won’t fall over. As soon as he sits,
    Click & reward
  3. Go through the process again. When he is sitting, raise the treat higher and slightly in front of him. He will try to raise his body higher to reach it.
    Click & reward
  4. Keep repeating this process and encourage him to go higher each time until his front feet leave the floor. Eventually, he will be in a begging position. Make him stay in that position for three to five seconds.
    Click & reward
  5. If you use a hand signal at the same time, your dog will soon learn to go into the beg position without the clicker or the reward.
    Note: It is important not to try to move through from one step to another too quickly. The dog has to figure out just what it is you want him to do. Once he does do it, you must get him to do it over and over again over many days, to ensure that he will do what you want every time.

One Reply to “Dog Trainers Must Shape the Behaviour They Want”

  1. Hi Barb,
    Thanks for gift and your note.
    I just had a look at this site and it seems really good and helpful. I don’t have dogs so I can only go by my impression!
    I hope this proves to be both enjoyable and profitable for you, though I know it’s not a new activity as such.
    I trust you are both managing health-wise and enjoying living in Tassie.
    Warm regards
    Linda

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