on January 9, 2010
Karen Pryor has done it again! This book is a great compendium of tasks as well as steps for training your dog how to do them. This book assumes, to a certain degree, that you are somewhat familiar with the process of clicker training beyond her first book in the series, "Getting Started: Clicker Training for Dogs." I purchased her "kit" that includes the book, a clicker, a small bag of treats to start out with, and a set of cards that are both sturdy, attractive and convenient to carry with you rather than carrying the book.
So, after you have worked your way through the tasks that you want to learn how to train and to train your dog to do in "Getting Started: Clicker Training for Dogs," this book, "Click for Joy! . . . ," takes you further with many, many more tasks, how to train your dog to do them and all that. You will love ALL of the tasks, yet you will have to choose which ones are more important to you and your situation. This, I think, after learning the process and the best ways to train your dog, is the hardest part of all.
You can thumb your way through over 200 pages of tasks or you can look them up in the index. It is nice to just think about a task, see if it is in the index (it usually is, too!) and then get started.
While most talk about the organization and the number of tasks included, I like to stress that your dog, through working and learning with you, will develop a new and deeper relationship with you! Your dog will (if you are patient as well as methodical as you ought to be) also be more confident as well as secure with you. This is because the entire process, repeated from the learning and training from task to task, will build a "leader of the pack" confidence in you in your dog. When your dog knows that you are a leader and that she can trust you and know that you will always lead her in a positive direction, your dog will be so much more trusting, confident in knowing that she is pleasing you in a positive way and this will result in a greater sense of security in knowing her "place" in the pack, a vital instinctual need of every dog! This is the greatest part of clicker training. Also, you can, over time, stop giving treats for the accomplishment of every task learned, only offering treats for learning "new" tasks.
So, hang in there and, as I like to say, "You will get a truly loving licking while you keep on clicking!"
on August 27, 2012
This book is very well written and extremely well organized. The question/answer format was perfect for me, as a crossover trainer, to start thinking along a different track. Each section of instruction also has a list of corresponding pages that will lead you to answers for problems you might run into. For me, this was the perfect book to introduce me to the ins and outs of clicker training. I think it would also be an excellent book for a new dog owner or anyone wanting to learn more about clicker training. Definitely worth a read if you are considering using a clicker!
A bit about me: I've been training dogs for almost 20 years and was always one of the first to say, "That clicker junk won't work", without knowing anything about it. Trying the techniques in the this book myself, I proved I was wrong! I believe that the same methods don't always work with every dog, but, boy, is the clicker a wonderful tool to add to your training "bag o' tricks"!! Very effective!