dog breaking on retrieves?

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dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Mo. Hunter » Tue Dec 03, 2013 9:10 pm

my 2 year old yellow lab is having trouble with breaking early on a retrieve. in the yard/field she does fine with bumpers but in the blind she will not stay. as soon as we stand up to shoot she is taking off . she does not do thish in the yard but only in the blind. what can I do to stop this from becoming a major habit?
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby dogyak » Tue Dec 03, 2013 9:45 pm

yep , a check cord :fingerhead:
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Dakota Creek » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:18 am

Instead of planning on hunting, plan on training the next time(s) you go out. Don't take your gun along, let the buddies do the shooting and you concentrate on getting the dog steady (with Dogyak's check cord) Don't even need the ducks for the first session or two .... Get her in the blind, get the calls going and have you buddies jump up and fire a couple of rounds in the air. This should get her amped up enough to give you the unwanted behaviour so you can correct it. Like any training this will probably take a couple of trips to the blind for her to get the idea that breaking is not allowed wherever she is sitting. Then add in a real hunt day, leave the gun in the truck and see if she's steady on the first few birds. If she's good, then you're good to go!

Dog's are place oriented and she's on a learning curve that says "I don't do this at home but no one is stopping me from doing it here in the blind". Take the time to correct it NOW before it becomes a habit!
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby TomKat » Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:15 am

Would an E collar do the same thing a check cord will?



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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby k.s. » Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:41 am

Sounds like your at a cross road in your dogs hunting career. If you don't fix this this season, he will break for the rest of his life. I also have a 2 yo and had to take a few hunts off to unforced being steady. 2-3 hunts is all it took, it was like he was a kid testing the boundaries. I missed out on some early season teal hunts, but he got some great on the job training/in forcing and I haven't had a problem since.

If you don't hunt with others or have a hard time putting your gun down, tie him up to a stake till he stops pulling.
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Dakota Creek » Wed Dec 04, 2013 7:01 am

TomKat wrote:Would an E collar do the same thing a check cord will?


That's assuming he's training with an e-collar and the dog has been CC'd ........
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Mo. Hunter » Wed Dec 04, 2013 7:08 am

okay thanks. am going to work on it starting tomorrow morning. thanks for the help!
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby dogyak » Wed Dec 04, 2013 12:33 pm

Dakota Creek wrote:
TomKat wrote:Would an E collar do the same thing a check cord will?


That's assuming he's training with an e-collar and the dog has been CC'd ........

A good point Dakota . @ TomKat , also when using the E collar , timing of the correction is a must . This would be hard too do if the handler also is hunting and refuse to put the gun down . Also if he's not watching his dog at all times , he's talking too his buddy and ducks come out of nowhere and dog breaks , gets burned in the water 8 to 10 feet from blind . Oh no , dog is confused and who knows , might not get in the water again . Has happen with young dogs , and hard as hell too get them back in the water . A tiedown being used and the dog will fully understand he will not be release and the handler won't make a mistake with the timing of correction .
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Rutin » Wed Dec 04, 2013 4:55 pm

Practice like you play..... set your layout blind up in the yard and work it like you would hunting. If you have the land to train on take a gun, get a buddy to throw bumpers/birds and make your dog steady while you sit up. If the dog wont stay steady, get your buddy in a blind with a gun and let someone else throw. Get your buddy to sit up and shoot or pretend shoot and focus on steadying your dog. Blow your calls before the bird is thrown also to signal that birds are coming and to get ready. Do everything you would in the blind if you can, these small tips make it sooo much easier on a pup when they get thrown in the field. If all else use a dog tie out stake to keep your dog from breaking and gradually work towards needing nothing. If dog breaks command NO and stop the training for a few mins, crate them if possible. This will drive the dog nuts but they need to realize that not every retrieve is theirs and its a privilege to get the bird. Once they get that mindset you usually have a pretty solid and sound dog!!! Best of luck
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Rick Hall » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:47 pm

There's a lot you can do at home to set the stage, but it's all for not if not maintained when hunting. Otherwise, Pup will quickly assume different rules apply then. One way or another, correction will have to be as consistent when hunting as in training or you'll have a breaker.

This coming from a fellow who's dog has six seasons and better than 7,000 birds under its belt but got loose on his line manners this season because it was "easier" for me when we had paying quests with us to let him roll on tipped birds a couple of times than to call him back to the blind and make him handle them correctly. Should have sucked it up, said, "Sorry, guys, I can't let him get away with that." and nipped it in the bud, rather than paying the price of vigilance and more apologies over a longer recovery period, because I let him slide the first time.
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby goosie119 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:02 pm

Every year the first hunt of the season mine "forgets" steadyness on the first group of birds that get shot at. I use an e-collar and he's been collar conditioned, I know it's coming so I don't shoot the first flock and train instead. He starts to move and he gets a no/sit and lit up, then he's fine for the rest of the season and I don't have to worry about him. You've got 2 options, a well time correction with the e-collar if you use one, otherwise tether him.
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Rick Hall » Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:12 pm

goosie119 wrote:You've got 2 options, a well time correction with the e-collar if you use one, otherwise tether him.


If the dog knows "here" as a command, that's a third option and the one I use (perhaps coupled with a denied retrieve) to remind the coyote he's screwed up. A tether is just one more cue Pup may decide bespeaks a different set of rules - just as some view a collar.
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby GarDuck » Fri Dec 06, 2013 8:15 am

I avoid the tether as well as it doesn't seem like much of a stretch for dogs to become tether wise. I would also suggest giving the sit command first instead of here as sit was the broken command and is more than likely more powerful than your here command.
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby Duckdon » Fri Dec 06, 2013 8:36 am

Mo. Hunter wrote:my 2 year old yellow lab is having trouble with breaking early on a retrieve. in the yard/field she does fine with bumpers but in the blind she will not stay. as soon as we stand up to shoot she is taking off . she does not do thish in the yard but only in the blind. what can I do to stop this from becoming a major habit?


Your dog is steller in the yard and never breaks. Why would you not use the same methods to teach sit in the blind as you did in the yard to train your dog not to break? Sure, there is more excitment but the method should be the same, you will likely need to increase the correction. Don
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby SHVLHDJIM » Fri Dec 06, 2013 10:38 am

Your dog is reacting to your sudden movements (standing up hastily to shoot). This is the learning curve you need to focus in. Agree with everything above, you need to replicate the hunt but focus on your actions and your dogs reaction. You need to replicate that scenario as much as possible to get the anxiety and excitement under control. I would keep off the e-collar- the last thing you want is for your dog to associate negativity with getting a bird. Hope this helped.
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Re: dog breaking on retrieves?

Postby GoldieRetriever50 » Mon Dec 09, 2013 4:23 pm

I've been working on this issue with my 2yr golden all season as its her 1st. Here is what I have been doing:

Shoot a bunch of junk birds, here in Michigan we have a ton of coots. They make great training birds. Freeze them and set up in training location with decoys spead out. Have your camo on, gun, and calls. Make it as real as possible. I use a choke collar, 3 foot lead with snap, and a stake or tree base. Give stay command. Call call call throw a frozen bird and shoot. When dog breaks it can only go a foot before choke collar pinches and man my dog doesn't like that. She got the hint real fast. When she breaks give it the "no" command or whatever u use and put dog back in its original position; mine us usually sitting. Once dog is still just for a few seconds release lead and send for retrieve; positive. U want to start with the dog sitting still for a few seconds before allowed to retrieve then work up to longer periods of time even minutes.

Make sure you incorporate standing and shooting in training so dog gets use to that.

After dog does well on land move to water for training location so that training can transfer over to water settings

After dog is good with frozen birds move to live pigeons. Start on land then move to water training locations.

Even better is have buddy throw frozen bird and shoot while u deal with dog. Much easier than multiple tasking everything.

Eventually work to the point where dog is off lead and doesn't break.

I found my dog understood her mistakes when I didn't use training collar for breaking correction.

You next obstacle will be dog whining or barking when sitting still. I got a tip from this forum fir thus and it has worked. A good nose pinch and "no" followed by "quiet". My dog gets her nose pinched and these commands everyone she whines. It's started to work and she's getting better. Good luck.
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