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Use Clicker Training to Teach Your Bird Fun Tricks

How to Clicker Train Your Pet Bird


Clicker training a parrot is really no different than clicker training a dog, cat, or other pet. Hailed as one of the most positive and efficient ways of training animals of all species, clicker training is easy to do and can literally be performed by any pet owner. In this article, we'll take a look at how clicker training works, what you'll need to do the job right, and how you can start using clicker training to teach your pet bird virtually any trick you'd like to, right away!

Clicker Training Supplies

First things first -- what do you need to clicker train your pet bird? Obviously, a clicker is helpful! Clickers come in many different colors and designs, and can be found at most pet supply shops for under a dollar. When choosing a clicker, make sure to click it a few times to make sure that it is loose enough for you to use comfortably. Some clickers have more resistance than others, and can cause discomfort if you have to use too much pressure with your thumb to get a sound out of it. You also want to be able to get the "click" sound to come out quickly -- the whole point of the clicker will be to tell your bird the exact moment that he or she has performed correctly, so you want to be sure that you don't have to fumble with it much to get that click out!

Once you have your clicker, you'll need to get some healthy, tasty bird treats to reward your feathered friend for a job well done. When choosing training treats for your bird, keep the following things in mind:
  • Choose a healthy, nutritious treat. You will be repeating your training sessions with your bird many times throughout every day, so you want to make sure that the reward you give your pet is not only tasty and satisfying, but low in fat and high in nutritional value. Good choices for bird training treats are fresh foods such as fruits and vegetables, with the occasional seed or nut thrown in for purposes of variable reinforcement.

  • Cut your treats into tiny, easy to eat bites. If your bird gets full too quickly, he or she won't be as interested in putting the work in to earn more treats! To maximize your training sessions, use tiny bites of a treat so that your bird is rewarded with a tasty snack without filling up within the first few minutes. Tiny bites of diced apple or bits of grape make excellent training treats that will satisfy and reward your bird without making him too full too quickly.

Once you have chosen your clicker and tasty bird treats, you are ready to move on to the next step of clicker training your pet bird -- conditioning your pet to the clicker!
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