1. Pay Attention / Find It

Exercise 1.2 Loading the Clicker

Why do I recommend you use a clicker?

  • Unlike you, clickers have no feelings. They sound the same to your dog, no matter how you are feeling.
  • Training a dog requires repetitive actions and once conditioned the clicker is the easiest sound for a dog to learn and recognise, it sounds the same every time.
  • It’s a simple tool that you (and everyone else in your house) can use time and time again with multiple dogs and future dogs.
  • On a more fun note, folks who embrace clicker training tend to make more rapid progress so you can show off to your friends and family!

On the other hand:

  • It is recommended to have a clicker on a wrist strap or attached to the end of your lead to keep it handy, it’s an easy accessory to lose or forget to take along.
  • Not every dog-owner is suited to a clicker, patience is essential!

Before you can use the clicker for training you need to teach your dog what the clicker means to him. This is known as "Loading” or “Charging” the clicker.


To load the clicker, simply click the clicker and give your dog a treat. If you repeat this frequently, your dog will soon learn to associate the click with a reward. Don't worry if your dog is initially startled by the click - once he or she realises treats come after the click, (s)he will adjust to the noise.


You will need at least a handful of treats or your dogs regular food (dinner is perfect), since you will be practicing this over and over.


Repeat this three times a day for a week. Vary the amount of time that you hold the treat in your hand before using the clicker so that your dog does not begin to expect when the treat will come.


If your dog wants to sniff and try to get at the treat, keep your hand closed and wait until he loses interest in the treat before clicking again.



I also recommend you download and have a read of this excellent handout about Clicker Training!

Clicker Training Your Dog v4.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document 677.8 KB