ClickerSolutions Training Articles

A New Definition of Right

I am so glad I made the switch to clicker training. It allows me to do things that I wasn't able to do when I trained traditionally.

Today Louie and I went for our walk, taking his canvas bumper that smells deliciously like a pheasant wing with us. I toss it, he finds it and retreives it. That's what we do. We both know our jobs well. Especially fun for Louie is when I throw it into some shrubbery, he is so proud of himself when he finally finds it. I toss the bumper as a reward for good "whoas, " recalls, and heeling.

Since Louie is only 14 months old, he is still seeing the world and the seasons almost as if for the first time. He seemed to not have remembered the lightening bugs from last year. It's his mission to catch small, fast moving creatures, especially ones that have the audacity to light up a foot in front of his eyes, a little above nose-height. Nevermind that he just picked up the bumper to make the retreive. Louie froze, undecided. But that bug, it lit up again, taunting him. SNAP! Where'd it go? There, in the grass, its glowing. He paws at it, looks at it undecidedly...is it good to eat? I laugh and say "good boy". I get to reward cuteness too, since I'm a clicker trainer. I get to forget him dropping the bumper on the retreive. Louie looks up and we make eye contact, both of us smiling. I don't say a word. He paws at the bug a little more, then suddenly remembers his job, picks up the bumper and shoves it into my hand.

I'll forget all the delayed or forgotten retreives in the world for moments as sweet as that. I'm so glad I clicker-train.

Angie Pullano
kwiknkold@aol.com
copyright 2002 Angela Pullano

 

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