Good for you My2geldings, and your horses - enjoy the journey!
I don't often use an actual clicker these days, but the principles are sound for effectively & positively teaching anything to anyone. They use this method with wild animals as well as domestic, with sea animals that you can't control with compulsive methods or equipment, and with people - children in schools, mentally handicapped people, etc.
I have taught different types of animals, not just horses & dogs, with these principles... including my kids & husband! :P I teach everything the horse or dog needs to learn with it, not just tricks.
Originally Posted by iridehorses
I realize that there is a clicker being used but it seems that the clicker is telling the horse that he did a good job and a treat is coming . I would have thought that the clicker is the cue to do the trick not "get ready for your treat".
....particularly do not like the idea of hand fed treats. That leads to a lot of problems in itself down the road. .
Yes, the clicker(or whatever 'bridging signal' you use) tells the horse he did something right. No, the clicker is not the cue.
Hand feeding treats does not
cause the problems. Reinforcing a horse with anything *without establishing consistent rules & manners* or when you're not conscious of exactly what you're teaching(you don't understand the principles you need to use) is what can lead to problems. Treats are generally an effective and strong reinforcer, so therefore they work well to strengthen whatever behaviour you teach, be it good or bad. Many people have no problems teaching 'bad' behaviour without the use of treats too :roll:
Food treats are also not a necessary part of 'clicker training', neither is the clicker. The principles are the imperative 'tools'. There are other effective positive reinforcers, it's just that food treats are generally the most effective & handiest.
And I agree with you 100% but with clicker training as you reach the point where the horse understands that the clicker is his reward you remove the food aspect of it.
I disagree with this particular detail. I prefer that the clicker always means the horse gets a reward(again, not always food). Behaviourally speaking I'm not sure if there's a difference, whether either way is more or less effective. As the behaviour becomes learned, I lessen the frequency that they get a click and treat instead. I think that especially while riding & the likes it is inconvenient to continue clicking for any longer than absolutely necessary. However, I do also use 'good' as a bridging signal and do tend to say this for every 'right' response, regardless of follow up rewards. Therefore, with my animals, click = you WILL get a treat & "Good" = you MAY get a treat.