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:
you got that right about the fact that they will test you. im still working on gettin everything together that i need to get started as far as books and dvds go. for now, the only other thing i will be ordering in the near future will be a small deadfowl trainer and some canvas dummies.
the more i read, talk to other lab owners and trainers, and the more im with him, the more i realize that he wants to make me happy and be happy himself in the process. he loves goin out and chasin this elongated tennis ball lookin thing ive been usin in place of a bumper. right from the start, he came back to my general area. now hes learning commands such as HERE, LOOSE, and SIT. these are commands he knows pretty well, sit being the best. each week, i make adjustments and depending on how hes doing, i mite add a simple command and work on that but its simple things like HOLD after the bumpers been thrown. he comes when called, and if not the first time by voice, the second time by whistle. ill clap really loudly when hes eatin and although he still looks up, hes quicker about going back to eating. when training, if he does exactly what i thought or want him to do, he gets a treat. but he gets lots and lots of praise when he does anything right. i dont scold him during training since he has done nothing wrong. the only time i scold him is when he starts drinkin out of a puddle or is pickin up shells and chewin on em. for the most part though, hes well behaved and listens MOST of the time. hes only about 11 wks though, so i think hes doin ok.
you guys are right, especially duckmn. hes still a puppy and im gonna enjoy every minute of it. now thats not sayin, his training will come to a halt, but we will keep the hunting aspect of things out of the picture for a while besides throwing fun bumpers. i realized today how much work i have ahead of me. i thought i was doing fine with him and he was learning everything very quickly, but he gets distracted very easily. i dont think it helped that he was in a new place, but i think thatll go away after i start taking him with me when i go to dif family members houses.
a loose dog wandered up and i was interested to see how he handled the situation, and to my surprise, he took it exactly the way i was hoping it would go.
i think i will keep working on simple ob for a while and when he hits about five or six months maybe, ill start with the hunting aspect of things. which, im hoping, will just be a combination of everything weve worked on up until then. i wont push him hard until hes about ten months. when he hits a year, im hopin hell know just about everything, but itll just need a lil more practice.
depending on how he is looking when huntin season comes along, i think ill take him on the early season and get him some practice before the temps plummit. but other than that, im not really looking to hunt him full time until next year.
he was calm and didnt back down, but he didnt offer to bite the ears off the other dog. he didnt bother to go after it when it walked away either. they sniffed and that was about it. he never barked or anything so i was satisfied.
and ill have to get some bird wings. will dove wings work? we just planted grass seed and were having problems with them. were shootin em anyways, but we havent killed any yet. (mostly because its been with an old bb gun) but if theyll work, ill break out my bb gun (the one thatll throw a ton of bbs :yes: ) and shoot to kill and have some dove as an appetizer and train the dog all at the same time :rofl:
im just looking for a huntin buddy thats dependable. im learning more all the time and am in the process of ordering some dvds. i would like to thank everyone thats posted up for helping me get him straight. i was only kidding about the whole dove thing too by the way. i will find some way to get a hold of some bird wings and eventually a whole bird. i will keep yall informed on how well his training is going. ive cut out strict retrievin and am concentrating mostly on simple ob and fun retrieves. depending on how well he did in ob, determines his time playing fetch. meaning if he did really well, we play for about ten minutes, depending on how long ob took. if he did more poorly than usualy, he gets about five. and then we go in and play in the floor until he falls asleep or lays down.
macman, you seem to know a lot about the subject and ill be honest. if i lived near you, i wouldnt think twice before asking you to help train my dog. i hate to say it, but hardly anybody around here has a properly trained gun dog that listens. i was offered fowl dawgs 1 and 2 for $38 shipped to me. is it worth it? it seems like it and im thinking seriously about it. ive heard a lot of good things about them. i looked at some others on cabelas and without spending a small fortune, they dont have anything thats as good of quality as these.
a quick question. ok so he knows sit and here. what should i be working on, heel? ive heard this is a big part of training, but when i taught him here, he came to me, walked about a foot behind me an stopped on my left side. he does it anytime i call his name and give here. if hes not sitting when i look at him, i tell him to and he does so. will this work in place of heel?
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