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Boomers Training (the outcome of I FOUND A DOG)

1953 Views 31 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  MacMan
ok fellas. as most of you know, i found a dog a couple weeks ago and never found the owners. hes now my huntin buddy and is being trained as we speak. heres a lil overview of what were working on and wat he already knows. keep in mind hes only 11 wks old. any input for new commands or anything of the sort will be most graciously accepted as this is my first lab and first time training a gun dog.

ok, so with about a weeks worth of work, he is making complete retrieves of about twenty yards and returns back to my feet. he is starting to go on command, but it needs A LOT of work. we started trying short, simple blind retrieves today using hand signals.

he works very well in the fifteen minute sessions we are working in, it just depends on what kind of mood hes in. im not going to push him too hard as hes still a puppy and he just loses interest quickly. i will be getting a whistle asap seeing as how he responds to that much better than my voice as far as getting his attention when hes distracted by something. i dont plan on buying an e collar because ive seen too many good dogs ruined with them. i realize thats the operators error but i dont want that thing to be there to mess anything up seeing as how im trying to prove my grandfather wrong about the dog being able to hunt in the first place. the only problem i see right now is he has separation anxiety and deals with it by barking. it usually stops within five or ten minutes, but i dont want it to last that long or even occur at all for that matter. any advice on stopping this before its beyond fixing? and any other retrieves you guys think he needs to be working on would help tremendously. thanks :thumbsup:
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HNTFSH said:
First thing you wanna do is get your mind straight. Since you have accepted this responsibility you're no longer allowed to claim "this is your first time training a hunting dog" BUT "You already know what the best methods are".

Secondly - your 11 week old is not running blinds and taking hand signals.

Get a good training book (program) read, read, read (and ask questions) and learn how to train your dog. Sorry...but the first few months is not about throwing bumpers it's about obedience.

You can easily ruin a pup and make any future training 10 times harder if you don't educate yourself first.

And e-collars don't ruin any more dogs than steel toe boots, improper intro to gunfire, pup burnout, training confusion and impatience.

See goosehunterdog for training aids...he's a good guy with good prices and very knowledgeable.
Sounds all to familiar to me.......

:yes: :yes: :yes:

Agreed on the e collar too. If you have no clue what you are doing you don't need an e collar to ruin a dog.

Hang around here for a while, read stuff, even if it doesn't apply directly to you. I think you will find that if you obsess over dog training for a few months you will find you know more about how a dog thinks than you ever thought possible.

You will want to get the stuff like this: When the pup refuses to come when called, even if they know the command very well, you have to resist the temptation to scold the pup upon return. You need to praise the pup for coming back, because when you scold them, they associate it with the recall, not the act of ignoring to the first command.

Stuff like that really fascinates me. When you start to understand these things, your dogs behavior will make more sense. It's pretty fun to stand there watching your dog go nuts and say to yourself "Hey, I know why he's doing that!"

You are probably going to love training a dog, but you WILL have some hard times. That cute little pup is gonna be a teenager soon, and pups like to test you.
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If I were you, I would get rid of that "second time by whistle." You don't want the pup to know that they have ever had the option. When you do that, have him on a check cord and reel him in if you have to. You are conditioning him to come only the second time, you will never get that voice command if you just "try again" when he doesn't comply.

Basically what I am getting at is that you need to be consistent as a trainer. Require 100% compliance in the yard or you will get less than 25% in the field. Been there, fixed that.

On that note, you could probably afford to slow down a bit. At the very least don't take any advice you get to mean that you need to work harder with a pup, you are doing fine in that department.

And enjoy it, I'm sure you are.
I would suggest you go through the motions with heel. It will probably help to have it taught on your terms, so both parties fully understand what is being asked.

It goes back to that consistency thing I mentioned, if you don't require 100% out of your dog now you wont even come close in the field.

Heel is a great command, and its basically essential to a well behaved, controlled hunting buddy. If you could say heel and walk that pup down a busy street, then you could skip it. Until you can heel pup around distractions, etc, keep going with it. It will pay off later, trust me. Also, skimping on heel is a pain later. (personal experience)
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