By admin Posted in Clicker Training, Updated posts /

Once the dog has established a connection between the Click and the Treat held in the closed left hand by regularly giving a good touch with the nose to the hand, the game can be changed by offering a finger, of an empty hand, to be touched before you C&T. In the same way as before, you gradually offer the finger to the sides and further away, both higher and lower as well as on the move. When the behaviour happens very regularly you use the word “Touch” when you offer the target (finger). In the first exercise the dog mainly used its sense of smell when touching the hand in which the treat was held. By offering a finger to be touched, we now make it a visual target to control the dog’s focus.  It is important to realise that: Dogs will follow a visual cue before the verbal cue and

If you control the head you control the dog!


Targeting is excellent for Cross-over dogs. These dogs have previously been trained by other methods and must now cross over to explore this revolutionary method.

Target Stick:

I prefer a target stick that can also be used for outdoor work. A plastic, practice golf ball on an arrow dowel works best.


Holding a Target Stick:

In order to be able to hold the clicker and the target stick in the same hand, you must first form an “OK” sign with your thumb and forefinger. Place the clicker between these two fingers and grasp the stick with the remaining three fingers. By rotating the wrist you can point the target stick in any desired direction.

Introducing the Target Stick:

Correctly grip the Clicker and the Target Stick and offer it slightly to the side of the dog’s nose and say, “Touch.” If the dog touches the golf ball, C&T and repeat as before. If the dog searches for the treat, say something like, “Uh –uh” or “wrong” etc. and hide the target stick to tell the dog that it was the wrong response and no treat. Any movement towards the stick should then receive a C&T.




  1. The dog must touch the stick held stationary in your hand anywhere near its head.
  2. The dog must follow the stick being moved from L to R, in circles and up and down.
  3. The dog must touch the stick on the ground.
  4. The dog must touch any object that you have touched with the stick. Begin by placing a small object on the floor and hiding the stick behind your back. Say “Touch” and then touch the object on the floor with the tip of the stick. As the dog touches the stick and the object C&T. Repeat at least 8 to 10 times and then leave the stick behind your back when you say “Touch” and wait. The dog will most likely move towards the object C&T. Continue the exercise until the dog will touch any object indicated by you.


Send Away – Drop and Recall: (See Advanced)

  1. Place the Target Stick outdoors in an upright position.
  2. Using the method described above, practice getting the dog to go and touch the golf ball on the Target Stick consistently and on command. C&T.  At first the Target Stick is no more than a metre away from the dog.
  3. Next, repeat as before; as the dog touches the ball, Click. Take a step back and wait for the dog to come to you for the treat. The dog must now take some steps to get to the ball. Gradually increase the distance the dog must go by continuing to step back from the stick after each touch. When the dog is able to go about 3 metres, change the send away command to, “Go” instead of “Touch”.
  4. Do not be in a hurry to increase the distance unduly or to progress to the next level too soon. It is very important that the dog moves in a straight line to the Target Stick, moves back with speed and above all find the exercise enjoyable. Offer special treats for good performance.
  5.  The Drop and Recall can be introduced as follows: Shorten the distance to the Target Stick to a few metres. Command the dog to “Go” and then follow the dog to the stick and as soon as he has touched the golf ball give a “Down” command while you are close to the dog. Now move back a short distance, Click and wait for the dog to come to you for the treat. Repeat as often as needed to get a good “Down”. Gradually slow your following pace so that the down is now given from a metre to two metres or more away. After a time it should not be necessary to follow the dog at all and the “down” can be given from the starting position. 

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