Clicker Training the Retrieve

Discussion in 'Clicker Training' started by Dexter, Dec 7, 2013.

  1. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2013
    Messages:
    10,038
    Location:
    Dubai
    I've hit a wall to be honest and I did try to iPad video us this afternoon to get some opinions but it wasn't working....Chris wasn't around....
    I'll try and stick to the point and I'll tell you what my issues are.....
    Our current retreive level is:
    Dexter is ambivalent about 'fetch' retreives . I'll give him a max of 5 throws and if he's into it and the treats are more than kibble I'll keep his interest for 5 and I might even get a couple of deliveries to hand but I'm knelt down on the floor with my hind outstretched and praising him in like a crazy woman so don't picture it as a slick operation.i c&t if he drops it in my hand...I just treat if he gets it back to me.he will,always run out after the ball but as he loses enthusiasm he starts to wander,get slow or drop the ball on his way back to me.I don't practice any steadiness.i make him sit before I throw but I let him run as soon as I throw the ball ,this was mentioned to me on an earlier thread so as not to discourage his keenness to set off after the ball.
    We do some 'find it' retreives .i make him sit and stay.....he watches me walk out and hide his ball,I walk back to him and then release him to ' go find it'...he likes this much more and will always do the 'find it's 'I set up for him.
    Issue with both of the above is if he sees another dog or something cat orientated he will forget he's retrieving and run off to please himself.So I want to get him hooked on retrieving his ball or a dummy( I can dream ::)) so he won't do this ....
    So,I looked up Pippas article Training the Clicker Retreive......we did 4 sessions and by the end of the second he was picking the dummy ( dummy shaped toy)up off the floor......this was what I was trying to video today,he's holding it,clearing the floor,so I click and he spits out instantly for his treat.....I think I'm clicking in the right place as he picks it up but it's so quick I could do with eyes telling me I'm capturing it....I'm scared he thinks I'm clicking when he releases it?The reason I think that is I'm really struggling with step 3 getting duration.....I can't capture a hold for longer than a second....Pippa,says be patient,I've done 4 sessions over the last 2 days and we haven't progressed at all.Is that me being impatient ,or should I be seeing progress?,he's a bright dog.im supposed to c&t for longer holds building up to 10 seconds....hmmm.I changed the dummy to his rabbit skin ball and I got a couple of longer holds ....but then when I ignore the next quick pickups waiting for a longer hold to come,he doesn't understand what I want so he sits down and we end up in a stare off with me kind of winking at the dummy/ ball or bless him,he goes into his repertoire of tricks to try and elicit the treat from me.That breaks my heart for him,he's so clever and trying so hard to please me but he doesn't understand what I want......after our last try this afternoon I've started to think do I even need to do this?he will pick up and bring a ball back to me already,so am I wasting both of our time being my usual pedantic self and having to do everything by the book ?should I be concentrating on improving his return to me.....
    I was really chuffed with our first few sessions,feel a bit flat that we've not got further over the weekend :( his delivery doesn't need to be perfect of course....me being me though I've felt that if I follow a training plan I stand more chance of being successful :) ergo more chance of stopping him hunt flaming cats!!! ;D
    Any thoughts ? Thanks x
     
  2. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    20,186
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Hopefully one of the pros will be along soon...

    I think only two bits where my limited experience is relevant.

    In order for the ball/dummy to be more powerful than another dog etc they have be really, really hooked. I'd say my Charlie now is to go get it, nothing really would distract him from that, but I'm not so sure about bringing it back. Bringing it back to me is definitely something I've trained rather than something he is hooked on. If another dog were to interrupt him on his return, most likely he would run off with both the dummy and the other dog. For a long while, there shouldn't be distractions when the dog is retrieving, I think.

    I never got a hold in the clicker retrieve, because he would chomp unless he is moving. I'm trying to remember exactly what I did when I was at the stage you are at. I think I started getting him to drop it in my hand, and at first I just put my hand under the dummy as he dopped it and did a few sessions like that, then tried to shift so he was responsible for getting it in my hand.

    I'd say you are working on exactly improving his return to you by clicker training the retrieve. You are training him that fetch means the dummy ends up back with you (in your hand is just the convenient place to train, it could as well be on your foot) and nowhere else. It'll work if you push on with it.

    Good luck, good luck - you and Dex will end up fab at this, I'd put money on it.
     
  3. hd

    hd Registered Users

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2013
    Messages:
    395
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Not one of those "pros" that Julie refers to but maybe my small bi tof experience would be useful.

    [quote author=Dexter link=topic=3543.msg39945#msg39945 date=1386437138]
    Our current retreive level is:
    Dexter is ambivalent about 'fetch' retreives . I'll give him a max of 5 throws and if he's into it and the treats are more than kibble I'll keep his interest for 5 and I might even get a couple of deliveries to hand but I'm knelt down on the floor with my hind outstretched and praising him in like a crazy woman so don't picture it as a slick operation.i c&t if he drops it in my hand...I just treat if he gets it back to me.he will,always run out after the ball but as he loses enthusiasm he starts to wander,get slow or drop the ball on his way back to me.I don't practice any steadiness.i make him sit before I throw but I let him run as soon as I throw the ball ,this was mentioned to me on an earlier thread so as not to discourage his keenness to set off after the ball.
    [/quote]
    Always go out with a number in your head and don't go over the number. Rationing builds excitement and doing more goes to boredom. Never retrieve till the dog is bored, always try to stop before hand.

    I normally do three. Don't know why.

    you don't need to do any steadiness but stop before he starts wandering off, getting slow or dropping the ball. this is showing a disinterest in retrieving so don't get to this stage.

    [quote author=Dexter link=topic=3543.msg39945#msg39945 date=1386437138]
    We do some 'find it' retreives .i make him sit and stay.....he watches me walk out and hide his ball,I walk back to him and then release him to ' go find it'...he likes this much more and will always do the 'find it's 'I set up for him.
    Issue with both of the above is if he sees another dog or something cat orientated he will forget he's retrieving and run off to please himself.So I want to get him hooked on retrieving his ball or a dummy( I can dream ::)) so he won't do this ....

    So,I looked up Pippas article Training the Clicker Retreive......we did 4 sessions and by the end of the second he was picking the dummy ( dummy shaped toy)up off the floor......this was what I was trying to video today,he's holding it,clearing the floor,so I click and he spits out instantly for his treat.....I think I'm clicking in the right place as he picks it up but it's so quick I could do with eyes telling me I'm capturing it....I'm scared he thinks I'm clicking when he releases it?The reason I think that is I'm really struggling with step 3 getting duration.....I can't capture a hold for longer than a second....Pippa,says be patient,I've done 4 sessions over the last 2 days and we haven't progressed at all.Is that me being impatient ,or should I be seeing progress?,he's a bright dog.im supposed to c&t for longer holds building up to 10 seconds....hmmm.I changed the dummy to his rabbit skin ball and I got a couple of longer holds ....but then when I ignore the next quick pickups waiting for a longer hold to come,he doesn't understand what I want so he sits down and we end up in a stare off with me kind of winking at the dummy/ ball or bless him,he goes into his repertoire of tricks to try and elicit the treat from me.That breaks my heart for him,he's so clever and trying so hard to please me but he doesn't understand what I want......after our last try this afternoon I've started to think do I even need to do this?he will pick up and bring a ball back to me already,so am I wasting both of our time being my usual pedantic self and having to do everything by the book ?should I be concentrating on improving his return to me.....
    [/quote]

    I've not done the trained retrieve / hold thingy as Eevee dog will retrieve. She's not obsessed with it but she retrieves to hand. I did think that that's what you did if your dog wasn't retrieving to hand. Pippa shows other things to ensure that the dog will hold for longer in front of you which i want to do with E. as she is a bit "here i am, here take it right now, cause if you don't i'll spit it at you" which I think the world of Gundog thinks is unacceptable. (you might be putting another poor pheasant out of its misery or dealing with your other dog so she'd have to wait her turn.) i say this in dark humour both at the idea of me having two beautifully trained gundogs and her bringing back runners as from the look of her she'd have killed it herself and half ate it.

    [quote author=Dexter link=topic=3543.msg39945#msg39945 date=1386437138]
    I was really chuffed with our first few sessions, feel a bit flat that we've not got further over the weekend :( his delivery doesn't need to be perfect of course....me being me though I've felt that if I follow a training plan I stand more chance of being successful :) ergo more chance of stopping him hunt flaming cats!!! ;D[/quote]

    I'm not sure you can expect to go at a lightening speed with all of this. this dog thing seems quite slow and i'm telling myself it's helping me to learn patience.

    Sorry if nothing i've said is useful.

    sarah
     
  4. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2012
    Messages:
    12,217
    Location:
    Hampshire, UK
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Angela, don't get down about this, as you know Charlie was a NON retriever and I have spent 2 years just getting him interested and now he is hurray ::) take your time Charlie why don't you!! At the moment I don't even make Charlie sit before I throw the ball/toy as he is so eager to 'go get it' I let him, although this is probably incorrect but it works for us, steadiness will come later. I do however make him sit/wait whilst I go and hid the toy/ball and then send him out for it which he also loves :).

    Where are you practising your retrieving? I started indoors in the hallway with all doors closed with no distractions, just a few throws a day increasing slowly, then I progressed outside into the garden until that pesky cat started using it as a short cut :mad: so now I am no our drive but also he retrieves whilst out on his walk too. Charlie sometimes drops the ball but Karen suggested crouching down as some dogs are intimidated by you standing up, this does help Charlie so it may well do with Dexter and also to put your hands behind your back when he is coming back to you. I know how you feel always wanting to do things perfectly, but at the moment I am just thrilled to little mint balls that Charlie is retrieving and maybe one day he will turn professional ;D yeah right ::). If I were you I would just concentrate on getting the desire to retrieve up and then start training delivery etc. but that's just my very basic opinion as I am very clueless :-[ Do what works for you and Dexter and just take it slowly. Keep going xxx
     
  5. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    20,186
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Angela

    You maybe want to get a mod to cut this discussion out of here and put it in clicker training where more people might see it.

    The question of whether Angela should be doing this then.

    My (limited to what I've read and clicker training Charlie's return) understanding is that all parts of the retrieving chain can be taught apart from the drive to chase in the first place (that can be nurtured but not trained). Clicker training - by that I mean fast, repetitive C&T for the same action over, not an isolated click for a good action - is very effective at teaching all of the actions of the retrieve as it can be separated into parts, and the result is strong.

    Angela says Dex runs out keen enough but his bring back isn't great or reliable - clicker training could improve this (it's not just about the delivery to hand although that is trained as part of the clicker retrieve) by teaching Dex "you pick it up and the next thing you do is go give it to Angela".

    I think. Hopefully a good clicker trainer can look over what Angela says.
     
  6. Jen

    Jen Registered Users

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2013
    Messages:
    2,897
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Hi Angela

    I've been looking back trying to find advice I've read somewhere about developing the hold but I can't. :mad:

    I think Pippa used a walking hold with rachael to stop her chomping but i think it also helped increase the length of the hold.

    Have you looked at Rachael's journey 20 clicker retrieve session and sessions 21 to 30.

    Sorry cant help more

    Jen

    Ps. Somewhere there is a you tube video of Pippa and Rachael doing the walking hold but I can't find it! Sorry
     
  7. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2013
    Messages:
    10,038
    Location:
    Dubai
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Sorry folks yesterday was flat out...no forum time at all :'(when do I find time to train Dexter??? ???Thankyou for your replies ,everything helps evenif it's just thoughts, I do appreciate it.I'm short of time today too Monday PM's+ sleepover is my day to have my niece and nephew)
    Jen I'll have a look through today and see if I can find what you are talking about.Dexter picked up a 500 ml empty water bottle up in the park today and walked about 200m home with it gently in his mouth...no chomping and dropped it at the gate when I told him....he can do this ,I just need to encourage it.
    I'll sign off now,I need to read up and get practising in the spare time I have so might be a bit quiet on here .....priorities Angela,getting info on retrieving rather than indulging your great love of chatting with you all about your dogs x
     
  8. Jen

    Jen Registered Users

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2013
    Messages:
    2,897
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    I found the video ! :D

    It's in photos and video links on the third page. It's called 'short video the walking hold'

    Hope it helps

    Jen :D
     
  9. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    20,186
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    I found the walking hold hugely useful - but it's good for dogs that are big on possessing the dummy. It makes the retrieving process more boring. So might not be great for Dex though.
     
  10. pippa@labforumHQ

    pippa@labforumHQ Administrator

    Joined:
    May 10, 2011
    Messages:
    5,460
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Hi Angela

    .

    From what you have written it sounds as though your main problem with Dexter is a fairly modest retrieve 'drive'. He is happy to fetch a few times and then he wants to do something else.

    The clicker retrieve is probably not going to give you that 'drive'. It is a good tool though, for teaching the dog to 'pick-up', 'hold' and 'let go' of the dummy. But because Dex is not that bothered about retrieving, you will need to proof your clicker trained retrieve very carefully against distractions.

    I think you will still have fun teaching him, but I suggest you get the whole thing to a very high standard indoors, before you attempt retrieves outside again.

    Maybe just a little :) Your timing might be slightly out, a video would help. Have you looked at the Jo Laurens videos I linked to somewhere? If not I'll post another link.
     
  11. heidrun

    heidrun Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2012
    Messages:
    2,626
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    [quote author=Dexter link=topic=3588.msg40154#msg40154 date=1386572135]
    Sorry folks yesterday was flat out...no forum time at all :'(when do I find time to train Dexter??? ???Thankyou for your replies ,everything helps evenif it's just thoughts, I do appreciate it.I'm short of time today too Monday PM's+ sleepover is my day to have my niece and nephew)
    Jen I'll have a look through today and see if I can find what you are talking about.Dexter picked up a 500 ml empty water bottle up in the park today and walked about 200m home with it gently in his mouth...no chomping and dropped it at the gate when I told him....he can do this ,I just need to encourage it.
    I'll sign off now,I need to read up and get practising in the spare time I have so might be a bit quiet on here .....priorities Angela,getting info on retrieving rather than indulging your great love of chatting with you all about your dogs x
    [/quote]

    Angela, you say Dexter picked a bottle and carried it and dropped it when you told him. I am never really sure what people mean when they say the dog dropped it, dropped it into your hand or on the floor?
     
  12. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2013
    Messages:
    10,038
    Location:
    Dubai
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve



    Maybe just a little :) Your timing might be slightly out, a video would help. Have you looked at the Jo Laurens videos I linked to somewhere? If not I'll post another link.
    [/quote]

    Thanks Pippa....I must sound hopelessly inept....

    I'll have a look through for the Jo Lauren videos....

    I have read through your blog today of Rachael's clicker sessions and it's given me a better idea of time frame..... ;D this is where inexperience cripples us and the info on the site really helps.wed got through steps 1 and 2 so quickly of the clicker trained retreive I expected the same going forward.
    It was interesting to read that you incorporated plastic water bottle into your practice......I was already to tell Dexter to Leave the one we walked by this morning but I thought let's see what he does...
    Heidrun,I probably missed an opportunity....as we got to our gate I just said drop and he did at me feet,I should have caught it in my hand :(
    I've watched the walking hold video today.... while we are out and about I've often tried to get him to carry a ball along....he drops it in seconds when something more interesting comes along...
    I feel a bit anxious at the moment about his behaviour off lead .....I don't want him to get too much for me ..he's always been so good.I know to assist control and improve his focus on me I need to get him keen on running out after something and returning it to me ,not doing his own thing ...but it looks like it's going to take me a while and all I can see is lead walks stretching out in the immediate future while we try and fettle this.,and that makes me sad for my 'pet dog'......I love him running free ,it makes me feel like he's properly excercised .
    When I walk with any friends with their dog/s Dexter makes me so proud,he's well behaved and obedient,he's walking as good if not better than most of them on lead and his recall is good ( not perfect,but I can always get him back to me without stress) in fact a few people ask me to whistle Dexter so they can get their dog back !With another dog he's not distracted hunting,he plays lovely....he runs after a ball and even his safestick enthusiastically ,even more so if he thinks the other dogs wants it ....but when it's just him and I ,I can't hold his focus....
    I've rambled off on a tangent there.....worrying won't fix this,working at trying to improve things will ,so on you go Angela
    Thanks everyone for listening to my thinking out loud posts and musings...I know if I get stuck there's always relevant advice and answers as well as thoughts and suggestions and I appreciate it very much
    Best wishes
    Angela
     
  13. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2012
    Messages:
    12,217
    Location:
    Hampshire, UK
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Angela you and I both suffer from a lack of experience and yes it is so frustrating that it just doesn't come naturally and we have to KEEP asking endless questions ::) You can teach Dexter to 'hold' his ball or toy, every day when we have finished training Charlie is allowed to 'hold' his tennis ball and we say 'hold' he will sometimes walk all the way home holding it which gives him a focus. You can increase Dexters desire to retrieve, it takes time but the joy when it happens is magical I still have to pinch myself :) You keep going it will all come together. :)
     
  14. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    20,186
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    [quote author=Dexter link=topic=3588.msg40267#msg40267 date=1386607233]

    I know to assist control and improve his focus on me I need to get him keen on running out after something and returning it to me ,not doing his own thing ...but it looks like it's going to take me a while and all I can see is lead walks stretching out in the immediate future while we try and fettle this.,and that makes me sad for my 'pet dog'......I love him running free ,it makes me feel like he's properly excercised .
    [/quote]

    I did post this on another thread too - sorry I'm banging on a bit:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8az4wxnbDQU

    This video is fast becoming my model of a pet dog "walk" - there is loads of stuff to get a dog running under orders, and all focused around the handler. Not just retrieves. Loads of stuff Dex is likely to be great at. Dare I say it on this site? It doesn't have to be all about retrieving...indeed, given most people ration the number of retrieves, there is a lot of "walk" to fill up with other things....
     
  15. heidrun

    heidrun Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2012
    Messages:
    2,626
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    I had to stop watching when the tugging started! :eek: :eek: :p ;D Too much for my little gundog trainer brain. ::) ;)
     
  16. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2013
    Messages:
    20,186
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    You don't have to do the tugging.... ;D ;D ;D

    But there is a big need for us pet owners to have something to do, I think. After we've done our 3 retrieves, stop whistle practice (not too much as it can be negative), and walked round the field for our lead and heel work....Charlie and I need a game!
     
  17. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2012
    Messages:
    12,217
    Location:
    Hampshire, UK
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    That was brilliant, I love the scenting rags, what a great idea. There was so much on there to keep a pet dog happy on a walk. :)
     
  18. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2013
    Messages:
    10,038
    Location:
    Dubai
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    No Julie,you aren't banging on at all,really appreciate it,I know you research a lot .so thankyou for sharing x
    I can here and now predict ,before we even enter the park tomorrow .that Dexter will be a Gold Medal Olympian in the Scavenger Game!I need to get to the pet shop and get one of those ball throwers to launch some food treats as far as I can ....that will satisfy my need for him to have his off lead running ;D...better still.....how do you think steamed chicken would fare in a dummy launcher?..you know I'm j...serious!
     
  19. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

    Joined:
    May 25, 2011
    Messages:
    6,924
    Location:
    Malvern UK
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    Won't it get sandy :D Have you tried launching a ball with the launcher, that gets dogs excited! Don't do it too much though as you can sometimes damage their joints!
     
  20. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2013
    Messages:
    10,038
    Location:
    Dubai
    Re: Clicker Training the Retrieve

    [quote author=Stacia link=topic=3588.msg40481#msg40481 date=1386701839]
    Won't it get sandy :D
    [/quote]
    Ha ha ha, no not in the park but when we used to be out in the desert if I dropped a bit of chicken,the sandy seasoning didn't seem to slow him down as he gobbled it up!
    We've got a ball launcher but don't use it for the very reason you've mentioned,to be honest my rubbish girl throws are enough for Dexters requirements...he's not daft,if I threw his rationed retrieves further out he'd probably give up sooner :(
    Lost my last clicker in the park last night....very annoying,I'm sure I've seen them in the pet shop though so will stock up this morning x
     

Share This Page