Message Us

10 Things You Might Not Know About Clicker Training Your Dog

By JanetKeefe. | Dog Info Dog Training

Clicker Training For Dog Obedience Skills and TricksHave you ever tried clicker training with your dog?

Clicker training is currently a very popular training method, and there's good reason for that. If you haven't tried it yet here are some facts about it, good reasons to do so, and some tips to get started.

The Facts

The Science Behind It:

Clicker training is based on the theory of operant conditioning. This term was coined by B.F. Skinner, an American psychologist and behaviorist. Animals learn that their actions can control their environment. For example, they learn that ringing a bell gets the door to open. It is positive reinforcement based training, with treats used as the reward to help your dog learn basic obedience skills as well as fun tricks.

The Reality of How it Works:

The biggest complaint I've heard from pet families regarding clicker training is that it takes a lot of coordination on the humans' part. Yes, to an extent this is true, but even the most uncoordinated person can make this work. I know that from my own personal experience. There are tools out there that can help as well. For example, I use a hands free leash when training "heel". That keeps my hands free for clicking and handing out treats. There are also clicker sticks, a retractable stick with a ball on the end and a clicker built right in, for target training (teaching a dog to touch certain objects). There are also clickers available that attach right to a leash.

The Rewards:

The clicker can make training easier, and training in and of itself is a great bonding experience for you and your dog. It can be very exciting when your dog picks up this skill and you can expand his horizons greatly; there is really no end to what you can teach your dog using a clicker.

The Tools:

You don't need a lot of fancy or expensive tools for clicker training. Clickers are cheap, and the only other thing you need are treats. A leash can also come in handy, as well as a treat bag. Hands free leashes and clicker sticks are optional, but can also be found at reasonable prices. It can help to go to training classes to learn this skill, but there are many books available on this subject and you can certainly learn it yourself at home.

Getting Started

A common problem for some dogs is that they are afraid of the noise of the clicker. If that happens, you can wrap tape around the clicker or use a ball point pen that clicks. We had that issue with our Labrador retriever mix at first, and by muffling it initially, he got used to it and we were able to take the tape off eventually. The first thing you want to do is to "load (or charge) the clicker." That is a way of teaching your dog that the click means a reward. Simply click the clicker and then give your dog a treat. Repeat this 20-30 times and for a few sessions over a couple of days. Then you can test your dog by clicking at a different time and seeing if he gets excited and is looking for a treat. Once you have trained your dog that the clicker means good things, you can either lure him to do the desired behavior or trick, or you can wait for him to present you with a desired behavior and then click and treat as he does it, eventually working your way up to adding a verbal command to the action.

Important to Remember

Take it slow!

Starting out, you might want to keep your sessions to about 10 minutes or less twice per day. Make sure your dog has learned a step well before moving to the next. If you move too fast, back up and start over again.

Be Patient:

If your dog is not responding well, it might be the wrong time for training. Don't be afraid to cut a session short and to try again at another time. Always end on a positive note; when your dog is successful at that step, and give him an extra bonus of numerous treats and lots of praise when you are done.

It's Not for Everyone:

Some dogs simply don't respond well to clicker training. Every dog is different. Our young Lab mix is a whiz, but our two older girls don't do as well with it. There are always other training methods. If it doesn't work for you or your dog, try something different or consider signing up for a training class to learn what does. Believe that all dogs are intelligent and capable of learning, and don't give up on them! Clicker Training and Dog Seat Covers: Cargo, Dog Bed Liner, Bed Cover: 30% Off Premium Seat Covers
janet keefeJanet Keefe "“ Blogger, Wag "˜n Woof Pets Jan Keefe works as a part time bookkeeper, though her passion is blogging about pets on the website she created, Wag "˜n Woof Pets. She formerly co-owned a pet sitting business, but writing has always been her dream.   Jan grew up with many cats, as well as rabbits and birds, and came to love dogs most of all later in life.  She enjoys writing about her family of pets which includes three dogs, Sheba, a golden retriever, Cricket, a beagle, Luke, a Labrador retriever mix; and one cat, Samantha. Her blog is about the joys and realities of life with pets, covering health, fitness, training and pet product reviews.


Signup/Login to post a reply


Reviews From 4Knines Customers VIEW MORE »

The best evaluations of our products come from the people who’ve bought them.


We liked the first cover so much that a few days later we purchased a second one. The cover installs very, very easily, fits and covers the rear seat and the back of the front seats of our Subaru Tribeca perfectly, has flaps that cover the door-side edges of the rear seat, and stays perfectly in place. Spilled or tracked water beads up on the material and can be easily wiped off. At first our dog did tend to slide just a little on the new cover, but he soon learned to stand, sit, and lay just as well as he did before on the uncovered seat. The hammock portion seems like it might provide some little bit of protection in a sudden stop (our guy will chew apart any "doggie seat belt" type of restraint in very short order - so that option is out of the question for us). As to keeping him out of the car front-area - well, our long-legged Standard Poodle has no problem in still looking closely out the front windshield by putting his front feet on the center console - straddling the hammock - with no problem whatsoever. But we did discover that having the hammock in place does allow us to safely keep his water bottle and dish, his leash, and an old towel on the floor under the hammock - where he can no longer get at them (especially the leash and towel) to chew on them. All in all, an excellent seat cover.


My furbabies don't like leather seats!!!! But they love this seat cover!!!

Very hard to find a split bench seat cover at a reasonable price, this one fit the bill. Easy to install, very durable and looks to be easy to clean. Wanted something that would protect the leather seats and was pet friendly (hate it when the material of regular seat covers snags toenails and collars). I don't think I will have to buy another for many years!!!

Jackie Carter

My Doodle approves!

Received on time, fits great and easy to install. Color is a great match. So far, so good. Durability? Time will tell. It appears to be well constructed.

Donald Fish

Fits my 2018 VW Tiguan perfectly

Very happy with our purchase. Fits perfectly, was easy to install and keeps the leather seats in our brand new vehicle perfectly clean.

Chris Campbell

great cover

This is actually a replacement for my original 4 knines cover which was 4 years old. I used it daily (bringing my pup to work with me) and washed it weekly, so the backing finally started to flake apart and come off. This newer version is easier to put over the headrests, great improvement in the strap and closures. Also the best improvement is the side flaps, the old cover didn't have these. These flaps help to catch the dirt from dogs feet when they are jumping up into the car, instead of it going on the side of the seat.

Diane Breland


This is my 2nd seat cover from 4knines and love them both. The product and service were both fantastic.


Repeat customer VERY satisfied.

We have made several purchases from 4Knines and are VERY satisfied with products (cargo liner, back seat cover, bucket front seat cover...). I volunteer at a shelter and take dogs offsite daily. Always a Pleasure doing business with 4Knines. Highly recommend.

Cristina Jones

Split Rear Dog Seat Cover - Fitted - No Hammock

I had ordered this item from an on-line site and was extremely disappointed when I received the wrong item. I was impressed with the quality of the seat cover and decided to contact 4Knines directly. I placed my order with Maggie and received the Split Rear Dog Seat Cover within three days. The seat cover fits nicely in my new Honda CR-V and as stated by 4Knines, is very easy to install and remove. My 8-month old labradoodle Brodie likes the comfort, and friends agree with him. Great quality item, reasonably priced, and outstanding customer service. Thanks 4Knines.


For all general inquiries, please call or email us
Phone: 888.602.2509

Sign Up to Our Newsletter

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Nothing but the best for your best friend!
© 4Knines. 2017. All rights reserved | Terms | Privacy