In these early clicker sessions we begin to cultivate an automatic positive response to novel stimulus The puppies are happy we are there, and enjoy the string cheese, but they haven’t yet learned the connection between their interaction with our training items and why we click and pay.
Puppies have a super short attention span, so once we get the pups near the training items and the pups begin to investigate them the rate of reinforcement must be high or the puppies will lose interest and go back to sleep. A good goal is at least one click/treat every two seconds; more is better. This can be challenging!
This is Barry’s second clicker session only – notice how much he has improved! His response time to the pups is sooo much faster. For two of the young ladies in the video this is their first clicker session. Marissa and Kayla are Krysta’s sisters, home from college for the summer, so of course they have been recruited as puppy trainers! They caught on quickly and have been having fun with it.
For a lot of the work I do with the pups I use a soft voice and gentle energy because that is how I want the pups to conduct themselves around their livestock. When working with novel stimulus training I want them to think it’s a party so I send them lots of energy!
The tunnel always ends up being a favorite puppy toy – in this session the pups are interested in it but haven’t quite figured it out yet. You’ll see them with the tunnel in later training session; it will look like a whole new game!
This video shows the full nine minute novel stimulus training session.