With using clicker, you can not only teach obedience and tricks, but also entertain your dog.
Three Ways to Use Clicker
You click when animal shows desired behavior.
This is most famous way of using clicker. You develop desired behavior through you click when animal shows closer behavior to the desired behavior.
3. Concept training (the term in D.I.N.G.O.):
You might know as “101 Things to Do with a Box” or “Show Me Something Else Game”. You click when animal shows any new behavior. This is a game to enhance animal’s voluntary behavior and the ability to think.
Here is “concept training” video with my blind doxie Nono. Because she had just had a patella dislocation surgery, I did it under the special rule that I clicked only when she used her body except hind legs. So she couldn’t use eyes and hind legs, but could enjoy it!
There isn’t a predetermined goal. It’s an intellectual game that what dog comes up with is recognized and given a reward. Any dog, even if dog has some disabling conditions, can do and enjoy it!
Let’s try and have fun with your dog!
*However, take care not to do “concept training” too much. That might make it harder to use clicker as shaping tool. Concept training requires new ideas/behaviors of dog. If we concentrate it on, dog will find out the rule. It makes dog think that he/she must show us other behavior for making us click. So he/she might avoid repeating the same/similar behavior. It gets in the way of shaping.
(26/Oct/2010 Added additional explanation. Thank you Cindy!)