It is commonly known that pets and more specifically dogs are best trained by using positive reinforcement. Clicker training is one of the most popular means of positive reinforcement for training your dog. It is simple and effective, and it has a higher rate of success compared to other methods of training dogs. The click sound produced by a clicker instantly notifies your dog that it has done the right thing and will, in turn, earn a reward mostly in the form of a treat. You will, therefore, need a clicker that is readily available to use, and this means it needs to be good quality and durable.
There are so many clickers in the market, and you can easily pick one that does not work properly. That is why we have taken the liberty of selecting and reviewing the best training clickers so that you are sure of what you are purchasing.
How to Choose the Best Training Clicker for your Dog
Before you settle on a training clicker, we advise you to try out different brands to come up with the one that works best for your dog. Clickers are relatively cheap even for those sold in sets so cannot spend too much money on them. Below are some of the things you need to look for in a training clicker:
What Material is the Clicker Made from?
It is essential to know the material of the clicker as this will determine its overall quality and durability. A good clicker should have a body made of stainless steel or ABS plastic with a metallic clicker element that is resistant to rust. The clicker should have a button made or plastic or rubber because you do not want your thumb or any other finger to become sore while you train your dog.
A good clicker should be small in size to fit in the palm of your hand comfortably. It should have an ergonomic design that will allow you to carry it without trouble. A well-designed clicker should also not have sharp edges to enable you to use it without hurting your hands and fingers. You should also pay attention to the placement of the buttons on the clicker. Some clickers have raised buttons while others have lowered buttons. The choice should be entirely up to you, but we find clickers with raised buttons to be better as you can easily press the buttons without missing even when you are not looking.
We all love products that we can carry with ease, and this should also be the case with a training clicker. Since it is small, the clicker should have a means of staying securely in your hand. an ideal clicker is one that has an elastic ring or wrist strap that you will wear around your finger or wrist. These will ensure that the clicker stays in your hand at all times.
The clicker should also have a hole that will allow you to attach it to your keychain so that you can always carry it with you and keep it safe when you are not using it.
How Much Sound does the Clicker Produce?
The clicker that you choose should depend on how sensitive your dog is to sound. Some clickers are too loud and may startle your pet and others too soft to use in noisy environments such as dog parks. You should, therefore, choose a clicker that is neither too loud nor too soft. The best option, however, is to go for clickers that have a volume control feature.
What Accessories are Included?
The accessories we are talking about here include a clicker training guide and a sample of dog treats. A clicker that comes with a training guide is the best because it will show you a step-by-step illustration on how to use the clicker train your dog and this makes it easier for you to bond with your dog.
Does it come with a Warranty?
Make sure that the clicker has a warranty so that you can return it and get your refund if it fails to work the way you expected. This also means that the clicker should be original so you need to make sure that you have purchased it from the right seller.
Top 10 Best Dog Training Clickers
1. Downtown Pet Supply
This set of four big button clickers is excellent for training your dog. It produces a nice loud click that your dog will not miss, but this also makes it unsuitable for dogs that are sensitive. Each clicker comes in a different color from the rest. The clickers are small enough to fit in the palm of your hands, and they each have a wrist strap to make them easy to carry and prevent them from getting misplaced. The clicker is high-quality and the button easy to click making it ideal for all people. You can also purchase a bag combo from the company to hold the clickers. The clickers also come in 5 pack, eight pack and 25 pack depending on your needs.
- The clickers are small and have wrist straps attached for portability
- Easy to use
- Good quality
- The clickers produce a nice loud click
- They are not suitable for sensitive dogs
2. EcoCity Training Clicker
These dog training clickers also come in a set of four, each with a different color. The clicker is made of high-quality stainless steel for longevity and to prevent it from rusting, and it has a nice design that fits perfectly and is comfortable to the hand. It features a big button that presses and comes right back up quickly. The button provides just the right sound not too loud and not too soft making it suitable for most pets. It comes with a wrist strap which ensures that the clicker stays securely in your hand and a dog training eBook to help you train your dog. The best thing about this set is that it comes with a lifetime warranty and a full guarantee of customer satisfaction.
- Easy to use
- Comes with a dog training eBook
- Comes with a lifetime warranty
- It may not be suitable for pets that are too sensitive
3. StarMark Clicker System
StarMark Clicker is a popular dog training tool among dog owners. The clicker features an ergonomic design which fits in your hand comfortably. The clicker element is made of stainless steel to prevent it from rusting and becoming non-functional, and the button is made of rubber to protect your thumb. The clicker has a hole which allows you to attach the clicker to a key chain or a lanyard for safety. It is easy to use and produces a distinct loud click that your dog can easily identify even in noisy places, but this also means that it may not be ideal to use on sensitive dogs. Most importantly the clicker comes with a free step-by-step training guide for your dog to make it easier for you to train your dog even as a first timer.
- Ergonomic design provides comfort
- Stainless steel clicker element to prevent rust
- Easy to use
- It includes a detailed guide on dog clicker training
- The clicker does not have a wrist strap or a lanyard attached to it
4. Karen Pryor i-Click
This clicker is an excellent training tool if you have a sensitive dog. It is not too loud to startle your pet but also not too soft that your dog will not hear. It is made of stainless steel for sturdiness and resistance to rust. The clicker has an ergonomic design to hold it comfortably, and it is small enough to hide in your hand. The design of the clicker also allows it to be held easily in any position. The button presses easily with a little amount of pressure and moves back up immediately to prevent it from getting stuck, and this makes the clicker a reliable tool. You can spend a little more money on the training guide. Due to its popularity, however, imitations of this clicker have been made which are not as reliable as the real one.
- Ideal for pets that are sensitive to sound
- Easy to use
- Ergonomic design
- Well made
- The clicker does not come with a training guide
5. PetSafe Clik-R Trainer
This clicker has a plastic body with a large button which you can easily press and without it getting stuck. It features an ergonomic design that fits comfortably in your hand. The clicker has an elastic finger holder to ensure it stays securely in your hand and a hole which you can easily attach to your keychain for portability. The clicker is also good quality and easy to use and it produces a soft clicking sound that is ideal for a sensitive dog. The clicker comes with an introduction to clicker training guide to help you train your dog more easily. It is ideal for training your dog indoors due to its soft clicking sound.
- It includes a clicker training guide for beginners
- The clicker is suitable for sensitive dogs
- Well-sized and fits comfortably in your hand
- Good quality and easy to use
- It cannot be used outdoors or in noisy environments
6. LaZimnInc Dog Training Clicker
This is a set of two clickers with an ergonomic design to fit perfectly in the palm of your hand and use comfortably in any position. Each clicker features sturdy metal construction that is resistant to rust and breakages. The clickers are black and white, and they each have a big button that presses easily and produces a loud but gentle clicking sound making it ideal for training sensitive dogs. Each clicker has a wrist strap attached to it for safety and portability, but you can also attach it to your keychain or another lanyard. The clicker can also be used to train other animals including cats, bird, and mice.
- Sturdy metal construction
- Fits perfectly in the palm of your hand
- Comfortable and easy to use
- Attached wrist strap for safety and portability
- Does not include a training guide for how to use the clickers
7. Karen Pryor Clik Stik
This training clicker is great for bonding with your dog while both of you have fun and it allows you to train your dog at various levels. The retractable target stick fully telescopes from 6 inches to 23 inches, and it is made of stainless steel that is resistant to rust, and it has a small round pointer at the top for guiding your dog during trick and target training. The stick has a built-in clicker that produces a nice gentle clicking sound, and this allows you to use only one hand while training. The button is large and raised to ensure you don’t miss a click, and the stick has a belt clip for portability. You can also use it to train your cat, and it comes with a clicker training guide to allow you to train your pet better.
- Easy and reliable to use
- Overall good quality
- Includes a clicker training guide
- 2-in-1 design for better training
- The length of the rod makes it unsuitable for larger dog breeds
8. Karen Pryor Clicker Kit
If you are looking to train your dog in a fun and effective way, then this training kit is perfect for you. The kit includes a Karen Pryor i-Click clicker, a clicker training guide, Click-a-Trick cards and a packet of dog treats to ensure you train your dog effectively and efficiently. The cards are ideal for training your dog outdoors. The training guide contains all the information needed for training your dog. The treat sampler helps you to get started immediately before you get more treats for your dog. The clicker produces a gentle clicking sound and is suitable for training the most sensitive dogs. The clicker is well-constructed, and it fits comfortably in the palm of your hand. It has a large easy to press the button so that you don’t miss any click.
- A good way to train your dog effectively
- Good quality
- Easy to use
- Suitable for sensitive pets
- It might not work well in places that are too noisy
9. Flightbird Training Clicker Kit
This clicker training kit comes in a set of four clickers each with a different color. The clickers have an ergonomic design that makes it comfortable to hold and use. Each clicker is built solidly to ensure it is durable and reliable and it has a big button that is easy to press without it getting stuck. The clicker has sound holes that produce a loud noise but which will not scare or startle your dog. It has an elastic ring at the back to fit your finger firmly and an elastic wrist strap to ensure that the clicker stays in your hand and this also provides portability. The kit is backed by a full guarantee of customer satisfaction.
- Comfortable and easy to use
- Suitable for sensitive pets
- Includes elastic ring and wrist strap for added security
- Good quality
- The set does not come with a training book
10. The Company of Animals Clix
This multi-purpose clicker is ideal for training sound sensitive dogs and puppies. The clicker is small and has an ergonomic design to fit comfortably in your hand. It has a patented volume control to allow you to choose how loud or how soft you want the clicking sound to be. The button is raised for easy use, and it presses with little pressure. The multi-clicker has an elastic band attached to it to ensure it stays in your hand at all times. It comes with a simple step-by-step guide which shows how to teach your dog new tricks. The clicker is well constructed to ensure that it lasts long through regular training sessions.
- The patented volume control makes it ideal for training sound sensitive dogs and puppies
- It has an elastic wristband for safety
- Easy to use
- Designed to last
- The elastic band merely is knotted, and it can easily get untied causing the clicker to get lost
Things to Keep in Mind Before you Start Clicker Training
You cannot just start clicker training your dog without doing some preparations. Here are a few things you need to do before you begin the training:
- Ensure that you are in a nice quiet room. Because you are introducing your dog to the clicker for the first time your dog needs to become familiar with the sound. This also helps to prevent your dog from getting distracted by other sounds.
- Check your dog’s reaction to the clicker first before you decide to use it for training your dog. If your dog seems startled or scared each time you use the clicker, then you need to find one that is more gentle and which your dog can handle
- You should have some dog treats close to you, preferably in a treat pouch that you can reach with ease. This is to allow you to give the treat immediately after you use the clicker.
Clicker Training Tips
Successful clicker training will not be determined by the kind of clicker you are using but how you are using the clicker. Here are a few tips to help you to train your dog successfully.
- Ensure that every click even if it is accidental is immediately followed by a treat. This will enable the dog to associate the clicking sound with food. When you click too many times without giving your dog treats it will notice that the clicks do not mean anything and decide to ignore them.
- Dogs are quick at noticing body movements so you should ensure that your clicker hand should remain still at all times and the only part that should move is the thumb or forefinger that presses the clicker button. This will prevent the dog from paying attention to your movements instead of the clicks.
- The hand holding the treat should remain out of your dog’s sight until after the click. Because dogs easily get distracted your dog may focus too much on the treat hand and fail to notice the clicks and this will cause the training to become ineffective. You can also keep the treats in a pouch and reach for them only after you have used the clicker.
- Once the dog has learned that the click sound signifies something good start focusing on the trick that you want your dog to perform. Give the dog a treat each time he does the trick so that he learns to associate the trick with the click and the treat. You can then introduce vocal commands and click and reward each time.
- When your dog has learned to associate the voice command with the treat, you can then only click and give the treat when it obeys your voice command. You can reduce the use of a clicker and treats once your dog has learned to follow your voice command and reward him in other ways such as patting him on the head or calling him a good boy. Even without a treat, your dog will still appreciate this gesture.
- Remember that training may vary among dogs, and some will take longer to learn than others. It will need effort from both you and your dog and most importantly patience from you. Once the dog learns he will not easily forget what he has learned. Despite this do not stop giving your dog occasional treats to show appreciation.
Getting started on clicker training is easy and effective for all pets. It is humane as it does not include any punishment. The training clickers that we have mentioned above are the best in 2019, and they will ensure that you and your dog have a great bonding experience during your dog’s training sessions. You can easily purchase the readily available clicker training books if they are not included in the clicker purchase by spending a few dollars.
- Karen Pryor Clicker Training, Fifteen Tips for Getting Started with the Clickera
- Psychology Today, Is Clicker Training the Most Effective Way to Train Dogs?
- YouTube, Clicker Training Basics - Dog Training