equine clicker training

using precision and positive reinforcement to teach horses and people

Resources

If you are interested in learning more about clicker training, there are lots of ways to get more information and help.  This page lists on-line courses, events, and links to trainers who can help you learn more about clicker training. 

On-line Courses: Horse courses

Introduction to Clicker Training:  This is Alexandra Kurland’s course which covers the basics of getting started as well as more advanced work including stimulus control, building chains, clicker compatible rope handling, and a little bit about using clicker training under saddle.  She will be adding courses on more advanced and/or specific subjects when they are completed.

Trainer Accredited by Kay Laurence (TAKL):   Kay Laurence’s course is designed for dog trainers, but she is accepting a few students who wish to do the course with a horse instead of a dog.  It’s a great opportunity to learn from someone who works with another species and learn what can be done the same way and what needs to be adjusted to accomodate the different learning needs and abilities of horses. Kay also has other short courses.

Peggy Hogan On-line Courses:  Peggy Hogan offers short (2 weeks to 1 month) on-line clinics on a regular basis.  Peggy’s focus is on shaping behavior using capturing, targeting and free-shaping. She frequently offers short online course ranges from one to four weeks long. The topics cover a wide range of topics including husbandry (eye care, hoof care, shots, standing for farrier), working with multiple animals, and working on grass. She offers teaching videos, written material, personalized feedback and video assessing.  Please note that the classes vary so people should check often, also, there is a prerequisite of a shaping course, learned either by tutorial, private coaching, clinic or online coaching course. Laurie Higgins co-teaches the on-line courses.

Jo Hughes’ Academy of Positive Horsemanship:  Contact Jo through her website for more details. I believe you become a member and then sign up for courses as they are offered.

Connection Training: Hannah Weston and Rachel Bedingfield. Connection Training is an online education site for horse owners wishing to learn more about training their horse using positive reinforcement. There are a selection of in-depth video courses to guide you in topics such as ‘trailer loading’, ‘suppling and engagement’, ‘de-spooking’, ‘training techniques’ and many more. Connection training has memberships of varying levels. You can get a free membership which allows you access to some material and then there are other memberships that allow you access to more services. Their website explains it clearly.

Terra Nova Training Center: This is Shawna Karrasch’s new facility where she offers courses in clicker training and related topics.

Theory of Fun (Inge Teblick):    From the course website: “Although there will be many references to clickertraining (starting point and end conclusion are formulated towards clickertrainers), this isn’t a course about clickertraining, but rather about the impact of motivational theories on learning and training.  An understanding of different learning procedures (operant conditioning, classical conditioning, social learning, cognitive ethology, habituation) will make the impact of the course topics more clear. I haven’t taken this course but the video lecture she did for the equine clicker conference was fascinating and the course is a more in-depth look at the same topic.

On-Line Courses:  Related topics

You can learn a lot about clicker training by working with any animal.  If you don’t see anything here that suits you, you might consider looking at on-line dog training courses (there are many of them) or contacting local zoos or other groups that work with exotic animals.  The courses listed are ones that I have taken or are being taught by professionals whose work I have seen. I am sure there are a lot of other courses out there so think of this list as a starting place.

Living and Learning with Animals:  Professionals course: Dr. Susan Friedman offers this 8 week course every fall. It is an introduction to behavior analysis and I highly recommend if if you are interested in learning more about the science behind clicker training.    Registration for this course starts the spring before and it fills up fast so if you want to take it, I suggest you contact her before June.

Karen Pryor Training Academy:  KPCT offers a variety of different courses. These are all dog courses, but I know several horse trainers who did them with their dogs and then applied that knowledge to their horses. 

Karen Pryor Clicker Training at the Ranch: /The ranch is a training facility in Washington State that offers a variety of short courses that are a combination of hands on learning and lectures. They are taught by Ken Ramirez.

Professionals Course at the Shedd Aquarium:  This course is offered once a year for a week in the summer.  You can get more information on the course by emailing them.

Natural Encounters Professional Course:  Taught by Steve Martin and Susan Friedman. I haven’t taken this but I have taken Susan Friedman’s LLA course and I am sure that if she is co-teaching, it is worth doing.

TAGteach:  If you are teaching clicker training to people, you might want to look into TAGteach which is “teaching with acoustical guidance” for people. Same idea as clicker training, but with some modifications to make it more effective with human learners.  I took the level 1 course which is offered on-line and it significantly helped me learn to make teaching a more positive experience for my human learners.

Events

Clicker Expo.  Karen Pryor clicker training hosts this twice yearly event.  It is 3 days packed with lecture and labs on clicker training. While it is primarily dog related, I have attended for years and find that I always come away with a lot of new information.   There is usually one on the West Coast in January and one on the East Coast in March. 

ASAT – The Art and Science of Animal Training Conference. The students at the University of North Texas host this one day conference every year.  While not specifically about clicker training, it is focused on training with positive reinforcement and always has a variety of interesting speakers. The conference is usually in late winter, but the month varies from year to year.

Miscellaneous opportunities

Mustang Camp  (Patricia Barlow-Irick) –   Want to spend a month learning how to clicker train wild mustangs?  Here’s your opportunity.  Patricia accepts 4 students per month who can come and work with the mustangs.

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LINKS

Clicker Sites  – These are sites that have articles, offer teaching or training, or sell clicker materials,   Most of them are horse sites, but I added a few that are more general if they have useful information.  

Please remember that no two trainers are alike, even if they share some common techniques or philosophy. This list includes clicker trainers who I have encountered either personally or via the internet, and are promoting positive reinforcement based training methods But, each one has a different flavor. A review of their websites will help you choose which ones might be more useful to you.

Australian Clicker Connection – Julie Lannen.  She has some articles on clicker training and CAT (constructional approach training) as well as DVDs for sale.

The Best Whisper Is a Click – Peggy Hogan. Peggy offers on-line courses, has a blog and facebook pages.  She sells a DVD on getting started and also has some material for sale that can be downloaded.  

Bookends Farm – Jane Jackson.  Jane is a KPA-CTP and has a blog and facebook pages. She has an eventing background and works a lot with young kids using clicker training combined with TAGteach. 

Click with Horses  Georgia Bruce.  This site has information on getting started and more advanced clicker work, an on-line store, and her schedule.

The Clicker Center – Alexandra Kurland – Alexandra is the author of several books and many DVDs on clicker training. She has an on-line course and her website has information on getting started, articles, a store, her clinic schedule, and a link to her blog.

Clickersolutions.com – This site is geared more towards dog owners, but there are some excellent articles on clicker training and the yahoo group that goes with it has really helpful members.

Clickertraining.ca – Sandra Poppema. Sandra also has a facebook page and blog. You can find her at Sandra HippoLogic.

Clickertraining.com – Karen Pryor.  This site contains a lot of good articles on clicker training, an on-line store, information on upcoming events like Clicker Expo and news from Karen Pryor Clicker Training. 

clickertrainingpferde.com – Michaela Hempen.  This site is in German and has articles and a blog.

Clickin’ on Ranch  – Karen Parker.  Contains articles and information on getting started.  Karen has been clicker training for a long time and uses it with her endurance/trail horses as well as to teach tricks and for rehabilitation.

Dogtrainingology – Mary Hunter.  This is Mary’s professional site.  It has her contact information and a blog.  (Mary also runs the website, http://www.stalecheerios.com)

Equi-libre.co.uk – Jo Hughes. Site of the Academy of Positive Horsemaship. Jo also has some articles, an on-line store and a blog. She is interested in dressage and horse agility.

Equine Revelation – Sola Wolff.   Articles and videos on clicker training.  Sola is a student of Alexandra Kurland and has worked a lot with mules and other equines such as donkeys and zebra crosses.

Equinox Horse – Tanya Kiselyova.  Articles on clicker training, video of horses in different phases of clicker training. Tanya is a student of Alexandra Kurland and has some nice information on starting horses under saddle with clicker training.


Horse- Charming – Maxine Easey.  Articles on positive reinforcement training. She also posts educational information on her facebook page of the same name (https://www.facebook.com/HorseCharming)

Horseman’s Arts – Sharon Foley.  Sharon has studied with Karl Mikolka and Harry Whitney and combines that work with clicker training. She has some articles on using clicker training to solve specific problems.

Irish Clicker Centre – Mary Concannon.  Mary is promoting clicker training in Ireland. She has some articles, information on gettings started, blogs, an on-line shop and videos.

KBR horse site – they work with mustangs.  There is a lot of information on using clicker training with mustangs, why they use it, how they use it, etc..

On Target Training  – Shawna Karrasch.  Shawna has a background working at Sea World and took that knowledge and applied it to horse training. She has a blog, on-line store, q&a section and also has an “ask Shawna” column where you can submit questions and she will choose some to answer on the site. 

Penzance Equine Integrative Solutions – Gwyneth Browning Jones Santagate.  Gwyneth has a background in NH and promotes holistic methods of horsekeeping. Her website has articles on clicker training as well as many other subjects.

Spellbound – Jen Digate. Jen writes about training and the work she is doing with her own horses, many of which are mustangs.

Stale Cheerios – Mary Hunter.  Mary blogs about many aspects of animal training.  She has some great notes on conferences and clinics/seminars she has attended as well as things she learned while a student in behavioral analysis at UNT.

TAGteach.com – Information about TAGteach which is positive reinforcement training with an acoustical marker (clicker) used for teaching people.