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Clicker Training for Cats (Karen Pryor Clicker Books) Paperback – July 1, 2003

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About the Author

Karen Pryor is a behavioral biologist with an international reputation in two fields, marine mammal biology and behavioral psychology. Karen was a founder of Hawaii's Sea Life park, where her work with dolphins pioneerd modern, force-free animal training methods. She is the author of Don't Shoot the Dog! The new Art of Teaching and Training, a bestseller on training without coercion. She is also the author of several other books and many scientific papers and popular articles on learning and behavior.

Karen Pryor is a founder of "clicker training," a training system based on operant condtioning and the all-positive methods developed by marine mammal trainers. Clicker training is now in use by people working with pet and performance animals of all kinds, and with wild animals in zoos and marine parks worldwide.

Karen has presented clicker training seminars to thousands of pet owners and animal care givers across the US, Canada, Europe and Japan, as well as giving the live clicker training television demonstrations in the US and abroad. She has personally clicker-trained horses, dogs, dolphins, whales, cats, birds and many kinds of zoo animals. She is the CEO of Sunshine Books, a clicker training publishing and Internet company. She has three grown children and lives in Boston with two clicker-trained dogs and a clicker-trained cat.


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Product Details

  • Series: Karen Pryor Clicker Books
  • Paperback: 85 pages
  • Publisher: Karen Pryor Clicker Training/Sunshine Books, Inc.; 2 edition (July 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1890948144
  • ISBN-13: 978-1890948146
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,933 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

150 of 155 people found the following review helpful By M. M. VINE VOICE on October 5, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After reading the reviews of this book and the similar Cat Training in 10 Minutes, I decided to purchase both so that I could compare them and benefit from two different sources. However, after reading both manuals and having been clicker training my cat for several months now, I can definitively say that this book -- Clicker Training for Cats by Karen Pryor -- just doesn't measure up in content, quality, accessibility, and organization to Cat Training in 10 Minutes.

1. Comprehensiveness of Clicker Theory: 4/5 stars. The theory used in this book is operant conditioning. Using a clicker followed by a reward, you can reinforce desired behavior in your cat. Verbal commands (come, sit) are incorporated in this book; strangely, hand signals are *not* incorporated, which is too bad because they're quite effective.

2. Accessibility: 1/5 stars. I was surprised to find that this book is not written like a training manual; rather, it's a collection of wordy stories about the author's own cats. Now, I love cats and enjoy stories about their antics, but I was constantly wishing that Ms. Pryor would just get to the point and tell me the training steps. Instructions are verbose and not highlighted nor numbered; they are buried deep within the thick jungle of her banal narrative, so it's difficult to find them. (If you buy this book and plan to come back to it as a reference, use your highlighter the first time you go through it because you'll be hard-pressed to find the instructions again.) There are no illustrations that show you what to do or how your cat will likely respond.

3. Organization: 3/5 stars.
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62 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Violet on November 29, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book to help me understand how to train my very active Bengal. He needed to learn some manners, and we both needed a "common language" so we could communicate with each other. This book was specifically recommended to me by a cat behavior specialist in Seattle.

The book is an easy read, as it is not overly long or complicated. The techniques are simple to understand and are explained in clear terms.

The clicker training techniques were originally used to train marine mammals, like dolphins! I have seen the amazing things trained dolphins can do when trained, so I thought surely my cats can benefit from this technique as well.

The book suggests that you begin with a very simple little trick, which actually comes naturally to your cat. Once your cat figures out that by performing the trick he has trained YOU to give him a treat, the rest is a piece of cake! My cat enjoyed the training and it provided some nice bonding time for us. It was exciting to be able to clearly communicate with my cat and know he understood exactly what I was saying.

My Bengal can now (on command)"sit," "get down," "jump up," and walks on a leash. The training only took a few minutes a day, and in less than a week the communication between me and my cat had improved significantly.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who wants to understand their cat, change or improve their cats' behavior, or anyone who wants a fun way to create a bond with their pet.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Future Green Girl VINE VOICE on July 17, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read about clicker training and decided to give it a try. Pryor's book is easy to follow and you can achieve results very quickly. It's a great tool for bonding with your cat. My cat Donut was a feral kitten who never properly socialized to humans, although she was gently and lovingly raised. Pryor explains how clicker training can make your cat calmer and more responsive, and since I've been working with her, I can attest. She has a bad attitude, generally, but she seems to be getting nicer over time. People just do not believe what she can do, as everybody always thinks cats cannot be trained. Clicker train--it works!
Here's what my cat can do: Comes when called by name, comes with a "rap-rap" signal, sits, "targets" to a pointer or to my finger, lays down, rolls over, stays, rises up and pats my hand with an "up-up-up" command, gives me "five", can chase a thrown object and touch it with a paw when given the command "touch," and can discriminate among sizes of objects and touch the one thrown rather than a closer one, touch a little bag of treats when she wants one, and I'm teaching her to hop through a hoop. All of this using clicker training! She loves for me to put her through her paces and I enjoy working with her, too. Get this book.
Amaze your friends, and let them think you have a genius cat.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By K. Boyle on May 16, 2008
Format: Paperback
I read this 75-page book in about an hour and a half. It's a good read, but at the end, I didn't feel prepared to train my kittens. In fact, I tried to do a training session with one kitten, and she didn't even do any reinforcable actions!

Long story short, you need to buy Pryor's book Don't Shoot the Dog!: The New Art of Teaching and Training to get an idea of the theory behind clicker training. The book is actually not about dog training - it's about behavioral training theory, and it's really insightful. Chapter four covers eight ways to deal with unwanted behaviors. Cat jumping on the kitchen table? Method 1: get rid of the cat. Method 2: punish the cat by squirting it with water... Method 6: put the behavior one cue. That is, train the cat to jump up on the kitchen table, and never give the command!... Method 8: change the motivation. Give the cat her own place in the kitchen to hang out that's even *better* than the kitchen table, like a cat stand.

And even with both of these books, I still recommend going to YouTube and watching videos of people clicker training their cats. Good luck!
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