Clicker training incorporates the use of a clicker as a reward or encouragement when training a cat.
Cats are able to relate with the clicker, displaying good actions and behavior. Clicker training is often linked with conventional condition, where cats associate sound with food and operational condition and where cats execute movements for food.
A clicker is found to be more effective than verbal command because cats can hear clicker sounds more clearly than a voice, as human voice tones change while the clicker sound is always steady or constant. The click is brief and concise, whereas a voice, phrase or a word, is fairly long in cats’ point of standing. To say “good boy” will take time than a click. With the use of a clicker, cats can be successfully trained in three simple steps: obtaining the cats behavior, marking its behavior, and reinforcing its behavior.
Guidelines when training with a clicker:
1. To make a sound, push the clicker’s spring end and then release. Treat the cat.
2. When you notice a behavior that you want your cat to continue on doing, click during while the behavior is being performed, never after it.
3. Click only once, to express enthusiasm towards the act of your cat and add more treats.
4. Note that practice periods should be short. More can be learned in three brief five minute sessions per day than hours of boring and stressful repetition.
5. Correct bad acts by ignoring and clicking when good behavior is displayed. Click when your kitten uses the litter box or when it plays on the scratch post, not on the furniture.
6. Click for accidental and voluntary actions nearing your objective. You should entice the cat into a position, but never pull or push it or hold it.
7. Never wait until your cat performs the perfect act that you told it to do, instead click and reward for little actions towards the correct direction. When your cat is signaled to sit and it crouches in its back, click.
8. Carry the clicker at all times when you are with your cat, so you can catch good acts.
9. Make sure to put aside the clicker when you are scolding your cat.
The non-confrontational character of a clicker makes it an ideal tool for training your cat. You too, can be happy with the results, having achieved all positive behaviors that you worked for with your cat. With lots of understanding, love, and patience, cat clicker training will continue to give you wonderful results that you and your cat will benefit from for years to come.