“Clicker training doesn’t work with this dog.”
This from a person that was asking for help with a delivery problem.
Clicker training is about marking events (with a click) and following them with rewards.
For it not to work you would need an animal that had no interest in any kind of reward whatsoever.
No interest in food, in hunting, chasing, freedom, in attention, in retrieving or any other type of reward.
The only animal I can think of that falls into that category, is a dead one.
Clicker training or structured training systems using its principles have been scientifically proven to work on a wide range of animal species.
Including but not limited to, dogs, cats, horses, chickens, rats, and even fish!
So, the answer to the title of this article is that clicker training DOES work for all dogs. But that does not mean you need to rush out and buy a clicker!
You don’t need a clicker if…
If your gundog puppy is a naturally keen retriever and delivers naturally to hand (perhaps with a few simple tweaks).[wp_ad_camp_1]If you don’t want to start training your puppy until he or she is over six months old, and if you are happy to administer corrections during the basic obedience training process, then you will probably do just fine with traditional training methods.
There must be thousands of happy, healthy, gundogs that have been trained this way.
You might benefit from a clicker if…
If on the other hand you are plagued with ‘delivery problems’ you might want to give the clicker a go.
Perhaps you want to start training whilst your puppy is still small, in this case, a clicker training approach is a great idea, simply because it puts no pressure on the puppy. He thinks he is playing a game and does not realise he is actually ‘in school’.
And if you like the idea of a ‘force free’ training programme, at least whilst your dog is going through basic obedience, then a clicker is for you.
Saying that a clicker does not work, is a bit like telling someone their hammer does not work.
A clicker is just a tool.
Use it or not. But don’t blame it.
If you enjoy my articles, you might like my new book: The Happy Puppy Handbook – a definitive guide to early puppy care and training.