Rick, in my old mans opinion, if you have never trained a Chessie, you haven't any leg to stand on as to whether its the man or the dog that's hard headed.
Fellows: Here are some things I found about the chessie
Chesapeakes are hard headed. TRUE (and false)
Chesapeakes are independent. There is a very big difference between independent and hard headed. An independent animal is thinking for itself. A hard headed
animal will not learn. Motivation is the key here. Think in terms of what the Chessie might want, i.e., food, the ball, a rag, a dirty sock, etc. Once you get the dog's
attention with the object of its desire, you can achieve miracles.
Often called the “Ironman” of the retriever breeds, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever’s history began with a shipwreck off the coast of Maryland in 1807. Among those saved from the ship were two Newfoundland pups, Sailor and Cantor. These pups were carefully crossed with local hounds and retrievers to create this outstanding retriever with incredible enthusiasm and endurance. The Chesapeake Bay Ducking Dog, as it was known, was used by the market hunters in the area for retrieving and guarding fallen waterfowl from the turbulent and icy waters of the Chesapeake Bay.
Sometimes mistaken for “odd looking Labs”, Chessies are a strong, powerfully built medium-sized breed with yellowish or amber eyes and a distinctive coat - a short, harsh, wavy outercoat with a dense fine wooly undercoat. Color can be brown, sedge or deadgrass and should be as close to that of his working surroundings as possible.
Notorious for being hard-headed, Chessies are the type to ask “Why?” when commanded to perform a task. Once the “why” is figured out, owner and dog do extremely well as a team. Fiercely loyal to their families, Chessies are often aloof around strangers and other dogs. The Chesapeake is a happy and intelligent breed whose courage, working ability and love of water mesh best with active, outdoor-loving families.
That last paragraph, describes every Chessie Ive ever had, so between that paragraph and the one talking about independence, I guess we have our own opinions and they should be respected. As for the Wolters methods of training, thousands of both field trial dogs and true hunting dogs have been trained via that book. It may be outdated just as a old double gun is in todays modern synthetic camo stock Benelli world, but it still works
The bottom line is that regardless of the breed and each ones individual characteristics, the owner must be willing to devote
a lot of time, money, and PATIENCE to have a good retriever
If you're there for the limit, you're there for the wrong reason