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Clicker training multiple dogs

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  
Sugar

sweet as sugar
 
 
Barked: Sun Feb 4, '07 9:27pm PST 
I'm wondering how I should go about clicker training more than one dog. I understand that I'll have to take just one of them in a separate area and train them individually. But the part I'm not sure about is if I can use a clicker when I have more than one of them around me. For example, if I'm hanging out with all 4 dogs in the backyard and I see one of them do something I like. Can I click for just one dog? or would that confuse the other dogs?? Would they know if I say their name while I click, maybe?! I've been using a clicker with just one of them because I'm afraid of confusing her. But I see what a clicker can do and would love it if I could use it on all of them.
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Beast SmH,- KoR1, RFTS

Kiss me, I'm- German!
 
 
Barked: Sun Feb 4, '07 11:00pm PST 
Sugar, I think there shouldn't be any problem with clicking one dog with the others around (as long as all dogs know what the clicker means). Assuming you're using click and treat, the other dogs can see which dog is getting the treat. If they have learned click=treat, and they get no treat, they should realize that the click wasn't directed at them. Also, you will most likely be making eye contact with only the dog that you clicked, another clue for the other dogs. I only have two dogs, but it's never been a problem to clicker train both at once, as long as I wasn't trying to free-shape the same behavior for both dogs (I can only look so many directions at once! big grin) Also, I teach clicker classes and have never had any problem with group clicker confusion. The combination of eye contact, click and treat is usually clear enough for the dog to single out which click is "his".

Good luck!
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Sugar

sweet as sugar
 
 
Barked: Mon Feb 5, '07 9:12am PST 
Thank you, Beast (cute name!). That's good news. I will start clicker training the other dogs, too !
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Indiana

Is that snack- for me??
 
 
Barked: Mon Feb 5, '07 9:36am PST 
Possibly a different "clicker" for each dog so they can learn their specific click? You could jar lids in a few sizes, the vacuum seal "buttons" on each size make a different sound. Just a thought. wink
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Bernice- "Bernie" - Brisen CGC

Cute Corgi- Attack!
 
 
Barked: Mon Feb 5, '07 9:38am PST 
There are electronic clickers that have different sounds too.

You can use different sounds for your dogs or any other animals. I've worked in group clicker classes and my dog never had issues knowing which was her click and which wasn't. They have very good hearing and can distinguish between clickers.

Training Dogs as a Pack - some good info and tips on training multiple dogs at once.
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Ginger DSA- ThD TT CGC - &hearts

My Angel
 
 
Barked: Mon Feb 5, '07 12:00pm PST 
One option would be to get two different types of clickers that make different sounds, but that might get confusing. Personally I always separate my dogs when I'm working with the clicker because Ginger is a little bit scared of the sound of an unmuffled clicker, but I know a lot of people do traing multiple dogs at once. Some people say the dog's name when they click so they know it was for them, but some just click and treat and I guess the other dogs know it wasn't for them since they did not get a treat.
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Sugar

sweet as sugar
 
 
Barked: Mon Feb 5, '07 12:19pm PST 
I thought about using different clickers or get the "i-Click +" since it has 4 different sounds (and I have 4 dogs). Some people actually suggested the electronic one when I posted some questions on clicker training when Chibi was afraid of the loud regular clicker sound. I thought of getting the electronic clicker and assign each sound to a dog. But as I thought about it more, I think the dogs would be find but I would get really confused!! I use both the i-click clicker and regular clickers on Chibi (She's fine with regular ones now, thanks to everyone who gave me advice!). Thank you for the website, Bernice. It says on that page to use the dog's name before every command when you address one dog. Maybe if I use their names when I give commands ("Sugar, sit" "Qube, down"etc) then they'll know who I'm giving the command to. And when I click and treat that one dog, it should be clear to them who's getting clicked. Sounds good to me! Thank you everyone for all the great advice as usual !
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