Am I wasting my time?
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Thread: Am I wasting my time?

  1. #1
    trykon300 is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultAm I wasting my time?

    Dear forum, I have a beautiful yellow lab pup. He is brilliant, potty trained, learns and obeys easily, but is absolutely uninterested in retrieving anything. He is right at five months old, and will play with you until you throw the toy(even only five feet). He just turns and looks at you like "why did you do that?".
    Am I wasting my tim with him. So far, the advice I have received has been yes, get rid of him to make some one a great house pet, and get another dog.
    Any advice would be greatly apprectiated.

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  3. #2
    Amber The Duck Dawg's Avatar
    Amber The Duck Dawg is offline Senior Member
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    There are some labs that just don't get it, and some labs don't get it till later in life. I would borrow another friends lab or labs and play fetch with him with your pup there free. Often pups will start doing what the other labs are doind or at least try and go steal the toy/ball/bumper etc. Once you get the pattern of going and picking up the toy then it is just a recall and you have a retrieve. Other options include using aother person to throw a bumper, you restrain the dog and they tease the dog with the bumper and eventually throw it, most dogs will go to see what was throw and even pick it up you call the dog and run away from the dog and most dogs will come running after you with the toy. Another option is to use a live pigeon (One wing clipped or taped so it can't fly), again have a second person tease the dog with the bird and then toss it a short distance, Keep your dog on a long line (20 feet) and let your dog go get the pigeon and reel him back to you. There are a ton of ways to encourage a dog to get "Birdy". Once the dog figures out the game then they often suddenly get retrieving.
    I saw a year and a half old lab that didn't want anything to do with retrieving one week and by the second week was an absolute maniac about retrieving( he was a guide dog for the blind reject.
    And while it is better to always start with a willing dog you can do force fetching with a dog that has no interest in retrieving and the all usually love retrieving after a while.
    So that give you 3 or 4 things to try.

    I assume you want to hunt with this lab? or run hunt tests? Or??
    Light, "weedy" individuals are definitely incorrect; equally objectionable are cloddy lumbering specimens. Labrador Retrievers shall be shown in working condition well-muscled and without excess fat. Females should weigh between 55 and 70lbs and Males between 65 and 80lbs. Height females 21.5 to 23.5 inches males 22.5 to 24.5 inches at the withers.

    Kelly
    HR Greenwoods Sealion Tsunami SH "Wave" born 3-9-2010
    Greenwoods Amber Wave VCD2 RA SH AX OF WCX CGC "Amber" born 4-13-2005
    Chino Ca

  4. #3
    trykon300 is offline Junior Member
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    I do want to hunt with him. He is becoming a close companion and I don't want to develop a strong bond with him-because I do get attached- unless he will hunt. I wouldn't just drop him off on the side of the road, but I will find him a good home for someone that would love a great inside pet. I am trying a different approach with him, and it works briefly. He is smart enough to be a seeing-eye dog! He just doesn't show much interest. I have been taking him out with a friend and his black lab. That dog is a FREAK! he will retrieve until he has a stroke, and has been doing so since four or five months. At seven months he would hold until released, and then stop and wait for directions when unable to locate an object. He is about 14 months and they have a good time together when we go. My friend has had shoulder surgery and hasn't been able to go.
    I actually thought about using some kind of scent, such as a touch of bacon grease on a tennis ball to really get his interest. If he ever shows interest, I only throw a couple times, and then stop before he gets tired of it. I get really frustrated when he doesn't, and he knows it. I just stop and take him inside. I have always had a tendency to give too much affection, and I think that may be bad because it is like rewarding him all the time for doing nothing. Now, I am not petting and showing affection unless he does something. It seems to be working for the most part.
    thanks for your response.

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    ShadecreekLabs is offline Senior Member
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    Give him some time. My boy Duke didn't really start to show an interest in retrieving until he was about eight months old. Have you tried different toys with him? I know squeaky toys really got Duke's attention, now he'll chase after just about anything.

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    MuttX7 is offline Member
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    My dog Diesel shows a little interest but not like my old Lab did. Ty would retrieve until he was literally crawling back if you would throw for that long. Diesel plays for about 10 or 15 throws and starts to lose interest. I have kept trying and trying, doing what I can to keep him excited about retrieving and slowly he's getting better. He's older than your dog ( 13 months ) and it is sometimes discouraging because Ty would would retrieve from almost the day I got him at 8 weeks. Don't give up, just keep trying. When it finally clicks, you're gonna be so happy!

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    windycanyon is offline Senior Member
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    Did you buy him from a breeder who competes or hunts their dogs? IOW, what is the pedigree like? That may give you SOME idea of what's there potentially. Did the breeder test the litter on birds? I've yet to see a nice birdy pup turn out otherwise. I also firmly believe in keeping live pigeons in some sort of a routine (once a month or so) just to keep feeding that desire. Lots of dogs don't really dig bumpers.

    If you do decide to place the pup, please let your breeder know. They should always be willing to take back a pup they bred, and may require that they rehome it so they know where their pups are located. Good luck. Anne

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    trykon300 is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the great advice. I made a mistake and requested advice in the lab chat forum and good grief at the grief!! We didn't get him from a breeder, but he is full blood that is very obvious. We got him from a couple that didnt have the time to give to a pup. I'm not sure of where they got him. We don't have registration papers, but as I mentioned, they said he was pure lab, and it is VERY obvious. Not to mention he gets bragged on EVERYWHERE I take him for his manners and beauty. His vet told me that he is one of the most laid back, and well behaved puppies that he has ever seen.
    I have been trying different toys, and doing different things with the toys. Another interesting thing suggested in the Richard Wolters book "water dog" is that instead of scolding him for grabbing my shoes, or chewing on a pen, we are simply just acting like it is a game, and telling him to "heel". He wags his tail and brings it to us. Another thing that I am doing is keeping my affection very low, unless he does something that I want him to do. For example, I wont pet him very much at all when I come in. But will play with him and a ball or toy until he gets it and brings it to me. Then I give him a treat and pet him. I have only been doing this two days now, and have seen slight improvement. I am hoping it will work. If I feel myself getting frustrated, I just stop completely and do something else. We have a wrag, a toy duck, a couple tennis balls, and a red squeak ball that we play with him with.

  10. #8
    Amber The Duck Dawg's Avatar
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    Not having papers is no big deal I no AKC will let you register him thru their ILP program after he is neutered. I think UKC does the same thing also. The ILP registration will let you run him in hunt tests (or other AKC events) if you ever want to. One of the big things to remember in dog training is to keep it simple when teaching and to break it down into small parts while teaching. If you have a problem go back a few steps and go from there again.
    Retrieving has three basic steps, go, pick up, and come back. The basic motivation for the "Go" is the prey drive of dogs. Prey typically moves fast and flat with the ground, often thowing something flat and low to the ground past the dog is much better than throwing something high and far. keeping things simple and short is best for now it is real easy to teach distance later.
    If you haven't used a bumper yet get one and don't let the dog play with it or have it but instead tease him by pretending you think it is the best thing in the world, play keep away with it not letting him have it, ignore him and focus your attention on the bumper then when he really really wants to get it, toss it, but hold on to his collar and restrain him from getting it, then let him get itwhile he is on leash and you can reel him back in to you. Take it from him and praise or even give a treat, if he is food motivated. You can stop the treats much later. All these things are to be done informally, you don't ask for a heel, you say here and just reel the dog back in, no corrections, this is all just to pump up the dog. teach here, heel , sit , and all other commands in a completely different place and setting.
    Light, "weedy" individuals are definitely incorrect; equally objectionable are cloddy lumbering specimens. Labrador Retrievers shall be shown in working condition well-muscled and without excess fat. Females should weigh between 55 and 70lbs and Males between 65 and 80lbs. Height females 21.5 to 23.5 inches males 22.5 to 24.5 inches at the withers.

    Kelly
    HR Greenwoods Sealion Tsunami SH "Wave" born 3-9-2010
    Greenwoods Amber Wave VCD2 RA SH AX OF WCX CGC "Amber" born 4-13-2005
    Chino Ca

  11. #9
    scutter is offline Senior Member
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    I am also struggling with the question of wasting my time, energy money etc. My dog is an eater and had to have emergency surgery for swallowing a rock. I $1200 so I struggled with the question of what to do with the dog. 1 1l2 years old and not progressing in training. I now have $2400 in the dog and wondering if I am wasting my time. Yes the other forum was brutal and really gave me a hard time for even considering getting rid of the dog. I am 60 years old and this was to be my last lab to replace my now 9 yr old lab. So I wanted to get a good lab that would make my last hunting companion.

    These are tough choices and do get more difficult as time goes on. I don't want to add a 3rd lab to the family so I would have to get rid of zoey if I am going to get another???

    good luck

    Zoey and Benelli's buddy

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    windycanyon is offline Senior Member
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    "Thanks for the great advice. I made a mistake and requested advice in the lab chat forum and good grief at the grief!! We didn't get him from a breeder, but he is full blood that is very obvious. We got him from a couple that didnt have the time to give to a pup. I'm not sure of where they got him. We don't have registration papers, but as I mentioned, they said he was pure lab, and it is VERY obvious. Not to mention he gets bragged on EVERYWHERE I take him for his manners and beauty. His vet told me that he is one of the most laid back, and well behaved puppies that he has ever seen. "

    The reason I asked you if you bought him from a breeder (and knew the pedigree) is that not all labs are considered equal! I have friends who have a service dog washout (career change is the PC term) who doesn't swim, retrieve, etc.. Some who breed for looks only may have lost the working instinct. Field folks tend to breed FOR the instinct and trainability (and sometimes not so much the breed type/look). That's all... nothing personal, at all!

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