Won't Return With Bumper

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Won't Return With Bumper

Postby cmelik10 » Mon Apr 11, 2005 3:43 pm

Okay guys I am getting frustrated so frustrated thatI have cut the last three training sesions short. My 6 month old lab will not return to me with a bumper. When my bird boy throws the bumper she charges hard out to it but will just run around with it in her mouth and not come to me. Without bumpers she will come right to, and with her ball she returns to me when I throw it for her. I try to keep the retrieving sessions as fun as I can throwing a "happy bumper" every two or three bumpers. I keep her on a check chord all the time and when she has a bumper I try and pull her in and she just pulls back. I have tried running backwards as soon she starts back with the bumper and she will come back to me but as soon as she gets within arms reach she just runs away again. I don't know what to do anymore any suggestions.

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Postby 98ramtough » Mon Apr 11, 2005 4:05 pm

Sounds to me like the obedience training is not solid? Is she truly solid on OB training? If so it sounds like force fetching may help that dog...

Best of luck, Mike
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Postby harvey1b » Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:03 pm

I don't know about keeping your dog on a check cord at all times. That's not something I do, but I'm with 98. The forced fetch is a great tool. Sounds like she may be a little young for the FF so try not to get too frustrated. Tease the dog with the bumper. Make her go crazy for it. When you've really got her worked up and excited throw a couple short retrieves. If this doesn't work take a break from all retrieving for a few days. In that time concentrate on the obedience like 98 suggests, and make sure it's solid. Pretty soon your dog will be itching to retrieve something for you.

I went through a similar phase with my dog a few months back. I didn't throw anything for her for 4 or 5 days, though it took some retraint. She started bringing me things from all over the house to throw for her, and still does!

Just some thoughts.

-Matt
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Re: Won't Return With Bumper

Postby shrpshtr » Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:47 pm

cmelik10 wrote:... When my bird boy throws the bumper she charges hard out to it but...

...and with her ball she returns to me when I throw it for her. ...


like previously mentioned, obedience is key. however, what i have outlined above from your original post is a red flag. remember, this is still a puppy. she may not think she needs to bring the bumper back to you because it didn't come from you. it sounds like she thinks the bumper is hers, not YOURS! i would work the bumper without assistance. just you and her.

note: if she pulls against you on a lead, you need to make sure you drag her behind to you if you have to play tug-of-war. don't let her get the idea she doesn't have to come to you.

hth!
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Postby gsphunter » Tue Apr 12, 2005 7:20 am

I would agree with bits and pieces of all the posts before. I think FF is a good tool for reliable retrieves, but 6 months is pretty young. The check cord is a good idea I think. Like shrpshtr said, when you say come reel the dog in if it doesn't come to you.

I would also probably cut your thrower and just work by yourself like someone else said.

Have you though about an e-collar?

Good luck and be patient. I know how hard that is sometimes. :thumbsup:
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Postby cmelik10 » Tue Apr 12, 2005 7:20 am

Thanks guys for your suggestions. I went to a am trainer last night and he took a look at my problem and said about the only solution was to Collar Condition her to here. He wasn't sure what was why she didn't want to come back to me he said he had never seen a dog that was there defient on coming in with a bumper when she would without one. He showed me how to CC her to here and said that in one more session probably she would be ready to go for more retrievs. Now the only problem is I have to get rid of my dinasour of an e-collar, anyone want an e-collar from Fred Flinstones time frame.. heheh :toofunny: :toofunny: Thanks again for all your suggestions I will keep them in mind in case this doesn't work.

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Postby gsphunter » Tue Apr 12, 2005 7:28 am

Hey Scott, I don't know if you have already been giving her the treatment from the collar, and I don't know if you know this already, but it is a good idea to condition them to the collar before you use it. Just put it on when you go out for exercise, throwing bumpers, whatever. Just get her used to wearing it. Do this for a couple weeks. This way you will prevent having a collar wise dog.

If you just throw the collar on her and start hitting her with it, she'll know exactly what's doing it. Then when she doesn't have the collar on, she'll know that too.

Good that you talked to a trainer though, because it's easier to diagnose a problem when you can see the situation. :thumbsup:
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Postby SteveInTN » Tue Apr 12, 2005 7:47 am

HUGE, HUGE, HUGE mistake!!!!!!!!!

ONE SESSION TO CC TO HERE!!!!!!!!!!

That is a crock. If you do that, or allow HIM to do that, you could ruin the dog. I don't know the particulars and haven't seen the dog like this other guy, but to ME (and I'm a firm believer in the e-collar), that sounds like a huge mistake.

Not knowing anymore about the situation than I do, I'm going to go with 98 and Shrpstr. It sounds to me like this dog hasn't had the appropriate level of OBEDIENCE training. You can't teach with the e-collar, just re-enforce.

Put the bumpers away for about two weeks and do NOTHING but OB training. It will probably be harder for you than it will be for the dog. Once you are sure the dog ABSOLUTELY knows the OB commands, then you can go through a NORMAL collar conditioning (introduction), which would be CC'ing them on HERE and SIT. Approach it with deliberation and as a complete solution. Don't CC to one command just to BREAK the dog from something. CC'ing in one day is BREAKING the dog, it is CONDITIONING the dog.

I've said this time and time again. It is my firm belief that most amatuer trainers put WAY to much emphasis on retriever training and far too little on OB. Retrievers were BORN to retrieve. A great HUNTING retriever is one that is obedient at all times, especially WHILE they are retrieving. Change your focus to OB.

Just my opinion...
"I'll start spending less time with my dog and more with my wife when she starts fetching ducks for me"
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Postby SteveInTN » Tue Apr 12, 2005 7:58 am

SteveInTN wrote:HUGE, HUGE, HUGE mistake!!!!!!!!!
you can go through a NORMAL collar conditioning (introduction), which would be CC'ing them on HERE and SIT.


And a NORMAL collar conditioning would take between 5 and 10 days!!!!
"I'll start spending less time with my dog and more with my wife when she starts fetching ducks for me"
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Postby cmelik10 » Tue Apr 12, 2005 8:08 am

Steve

I did not mean that she was CC he just showed me how to go about it. She is by no means even close to finished with CC he just gave me his method of CCing her to here, it was just for here not for anything else, the way he and alot of other trainers in my area do their CC is one command at a time throwing the Mike Lardy method of CCing out the window which has you doing multiple commands in one session. This was after we worked out on OB wit him and he saw that her OB is solid. Im sorry if I was alittle unclear about it. Again she is not done with CC the trainer just showed me how to go about doing it so that I could do it on my own. Sorry for any misunderstanding.

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Postby mfetter » Tue Apr 12, 2005 8:54 am

Welcome to the diverse beliefs in dog training :umm:

I would agree with everyones post so far. A e collar WILL ruin your dog if you misuse it or expect it correct your problems. How ever if your dog is not listing to you because he know that he is out of range then a collar would fix that. If he is not coming back or running from you due to lack of your OB training then you are going to confuse your dog even more by adding the e collar. It is good that you took the time to go to the breeder or trainer to get oponions though.

keep us updated!!
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Postby SteveInTN » Tue Apr 12, 2005 9:39 am

cmelik10 wrote:He showed me how to CC her to here and said that in one more session probably she would be ready to go for more retrievs.


This is what got me riled up, sure made it sound like to me like you spend a couple of days CC'ing a dog and then you're back to training.

cmelik10 wrote:I did not mean that she was CC he just showed me how to go about it.

the way he and alot of other trainers in my area do their CC is one command at a time throwing the Mike Lardy method of CCing out the window which has you doing multiple commands in one session.


That is incorrect. Mike Lardy's method (which is the norm from what I have seen) is to spend the first few sessions on ONE command. It is only after the initial sessions (2 to 5) on SIT and HERE that he mixes them together. Collar Conditioning is a LOT like the Force Fetch in that it is a rough way to make a lasting impression on a dog. It is also like the Force Fetch in that it can be a life changing experience for the dog, and it's relationship with you. It is a learning process in and of itself, and there is a definite method to the madness. So if you NEVER mix the two in the controlled environment of the CC, then you are cheating the dog, and yourself. You condition in a controlled environment in hopes that the training (conditioning) carries forward into uncontrolled environments. In the end you will end up using the e-collar on multiple commands. Why NOT condition that way?

I apologize if I've jumped the gun on you. While I am a firm believer in the absolute 'magic' and 'precision' that an e-collar can bring to training, I've also seen MANY a dog that has been ruined by it. While advice from my anonymous butt across the internet shouldn't amount to crapola, you want to MAKE SURE that you are getting sound advice from those around you. Mike Lardy is freakin guru, as is Evan Graham. If someone says they are doing something UNLIKE Mike Lardy, that would be a red flag for me. Especially when it seems as if they aren't sure what Mike Lardy does.

Bottom line, you are here and there asking questions and seeking advice. Because of that fact alone, you are on the right track. Obviously you care and are serious about the process. That alone gets you a long ways towards the end goal of having a kick-butt retriever. Look at and UNDERSTAND all sides, don't take one persons advice. Make an informed decision for yourself.

Peace!!

Steve
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Postby cmelik10 » Tue Apr 12, 2005 11:01 am

Steve

Here is the drill that I am doing, it was shown to the trainer I talked to last night by Evan himself. You take two leads clipped to a choke collar have one person hold one of the ropes and stand around a good steady pole. You take the other chord and stand away from the dog both people putting pressure on the chords so that the dog can't go anywhere. Give the dog a solid "here" and tug on the rope bringing the dog to you, at the same time the other person drops the rope in their hands. Do this two or three times with no correction. Once the dog gets to you praise it and then take it back to the original position this time when the "here" command is given the dog is given a nick, keep giving this command and nick till the dog gets to your side. This shows the dog that when the here command is given it needs to get to your side right now or it is going to get corrected. Do this step three or four times give the "here" command along with a nick. Now take the dog back to the original spot an give them the "here" command this time with only a tug from the rope no nick. Do this three times and then take it back to the orginal spot and give the command with no tug or nick.

cmelik10 wrote:
He showed me how to CC her to here and said that in one more session probably she would be ready to go for more retrievs.


This is what got me riled up, sure made it sound like to me like you spend a couple of days CC'ing a dog and then you're back to training.


What I meant is that you only do that drill for a few sessions before the dog is collar conitioned to here and that command only. This isn't a drill that should need more than three to four sessions at most. The dog that will only be CC'ed for the "here" command not any other command those will come later.

This may or may not be the best way I don't know. All I know is that after about 100 phone calls one man has offered to at least help me out alittle and for that I am greatful, unfortunatley I am not able to shop around for hands on help because of the attitudes that I have gotten when I asked about it. I am not meaning to be arogant, cocky, or a prick with this whole situation and Steve please don't take it as taht ut there is always more than one way to skin a cat. I agree with you on damn near 100% of everything you have said an if it was possible for you to see what I was talking about we are probably saying much of the samethings.

Again that you for all of your help
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Postby SteveInTN » Tue Apr 12, 2005 11:23 am

We are on the same page...

It is the same thing, just a different approach. Again, I was reading that as you being told that your dog would be CC'd to HERE in one session.

One thing to think about in the vein of there being "different ways to skin a cat". If you CC the dog to HERE first, and don't follow up with CC'ing to SIT, then you had better be careful that you don't teach the dog to run to your side EVERY time they get pressure from the collar. This is a classic mistake, and usually a trademark sign of a dog not properly conditioned. I've hunted with MANY a bird dog that come running when they get shocked, or perhaps they just lay down.

Make sure the dog knows that the pressure is released when the OBEY versus when they arrive at your side.

This crap gets complicated and I understand the frustration of being able to find someone to work with. Having an Evan Graham reference book or video, or one from Mike Lardy, is the ideal situation. That way you can hear their thoughts on the entire training progression versus one isolated portion of it. Very few, if any, things having to do with training a retriever are not inter-related. There are flows and progressions between steps. Accidently conditioning that dog to run to your side each time it is shocked would be damn near impossible to correct.

Steve
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Postby MOBOTTOMBOY » Sat Apr 16, 2005 8:29 am

hey Scott.

I've been reading some of your post, and it appears we are going through the same things at the same time I also have a 6 month old lab who has been doing a great job with his training untill recently. It seem like he just wacked out after he turned 6 months old.

you have recieved some good advice from this group, better than any I can give. so I'll just toss in my opinion. Yes training a dog is not an easy thing to do. but from the outside looking in ( reading your post) your going to fast, you are trying to progress according to your timetable not the pups.

It sounds like your trying to cc'ing and ff'ing at the same time or very close together, these are both very stressfull and confusing things for a 6mo pup (his timetable)
I'm not sure what your goals are but in one of your post you said you would like to get his Jr. title this summer. (your timetable)
you will have this dog for many years to come if he dosn't get his Jr before he is a year old so what. Back off have fun with your dog,
keep working with him as much as you can it will be ok.

Frank
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