In May we announced the launch of the first educational course of the new Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training & Behavior. The Academy is set up both to spread the word about clicker training and to teach people to clicker train the way we think it ought to be done.
Just for Professional Trainers
Scent discrimination is one of the "advanced" obedience exercises, but it is actually one of the easiest to train. Why? You are working with the dog's single most acute sense: smell. Although the word is politically charged, in behavioral terms "discrimination" simply means a choice made on the basis of established criteria. In the case of scent articles, that criterion is the handler's scent ("find the one that smells like me").
We're proud to announce Morgan Spector as a new member of the outstanding ClickerExpo faculty. Morgan established Best Behavior Dog Training in 1995 to apply clicker training methods to competition obedience training. This work ultimately led to the writing of his popular book, Clicker Training for Obedience. We recently spoke with Morgan about his career and the status of clicker training today.
It wasn't until 2000, however, when eight members of the Gemini training staff attended the APDT conference in Houston, that clicker training really "clicked." As Paul remembers, "We sat around and talked about it and said 'It's truly more effective and it's better for the dogs. We're going to close our eyes and jump.'" Looking back, Paul is proud of that decision. "It took guts to walk out of Houston and say 'We're going to throw the choke collars out and order some clickers.'"
The following correspondence was written by five experts in the field of training, in response to a request for advice on starting a training career. The experts' advice is so full of good ideas and resources that we thought many others might benefit from publishing the e-mail trail.