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Clicker Training ... for Goats?

posted Feb 3, 2010, 11:25 AM by brian talbert
By Rhiannon Talbert

On Sunday, May 17, 2009, the members of the Packgoat Project attended an interesting event … “ clicker training” taught by Kim Yocklin. Kim is a Certified Pet Dog Trainer, the leader of the Washington County 4-H Dog Club (TailWaggers) and owner of Canine Character (www.caninecharacter.com), which provides dog behavior training at Central Dawgma in Frederick. However, Kim thought it might be fun to see if we could apply the same principals of clicker training she uses with dogs to our group of eager and smart goats. The Packgoating crew first tried to get their goats to recognize the sound of the clicker as a reward. What we were teaching them was a basic equation, Click = Treat. We then tried to twist it up a notch. Could the goats learn the next equation: Touch my person’s hand = click = treat? We were thrilled to learn that not only can the goat figure it out, they can do it exceptionally well!