More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...
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Thread: More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

  1. #1
    CaliforniaLabLover's Avatar
    CaliforniaLabLover is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultMore beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

    We had a great training session today (Saturday), before the temperatures hit over 100-degrees F (when we decided to call it quits). We started at 7:30am to help with the weather issues, which meant getting up at 5am and on the road by 6:30am, but we had a great time!

    Today, we introduced to live, wing-clipped pigeons on land, and long-dead, eventually water-logged (honestly, we ended up losing 2 of them when they finally sunk :vomit ducks in the water. It was a ton of fun, in spite of stopping early due to the heat.

    Here are our training problems- my fault completely, without even knowing it and obviously not thinking about future training endeavors:

    Monty will retrieve anything in the water, but we were having issues with the birds on the land (not the live ones, but the dead ones). Why? Well, we have a lot with a pool and a house...no real "yard" to work in unless you count our unfenced front yard which isn't very large (gotta love southern California housing developments). So, Monty has been worked with retrieving almost exclusively in the water.

    Our second problem is that he's totally bumper-crazy. Again, that is all I've worked with (in the pool, at the beach occasionally when we go, and what little we've done on the land). I didn't have any access to birds before getting involved with these clubs doing the training weekends. When I played with the dogs in the pool, I never even considered that it would eventually make pool retrieves (and only with bumpers) alone seem like "the only thing to do."

    Having said that, he did GREAT today...retrieved every single water mark (ducks) with gusto (man, are those some flying entries he does!) and with very little vocalization this time- yay! And on the land, he went after the wing-clipped pigeons, bringing them back almost always...in spite of the couple of episodes where he would go out and then lose concentration, running around sniffing everything and peeing. Grrr...this is one frustrating thing about having an intact male- we're just finishing up with e-collar conditioning, so hopefully that will help with this in the future. When they pulled out a FT golden as "competition" for the retrieve, he nailed them every time. Ran right over, grabbed the live bird and then brought it right back.

    We did have an "incident" but thankfully he isn't scarred for life or anything...LOL. Someone was holding a wing-clipped pigeon, and they let him sniff it without holding its legs. It reached out and nailed Monty right on the nose with its sharp little nails, making him squeal, squint, and back away. Anytime anyone would approach with the pigeon, he would squint and start pushing backwards, away from the bird. It took a little coaxing (and holding those legs) to get him to let me rub the live bird all over his nose again so he could tell it was actually pretty soft. After that, he ran out for a couple of retrieves.

    Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!

    ~Julie, Rogue, Monty, and Eddy~

    "The reason a dog has so many friends is that he wags his tail instead of his tongue." -Anon

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  3. #2
    Tanya is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

    sounds like a fun class I have the opposite of a bumper crazy dog - one that barely touches it He is improve abit though, but I am pooped after our sessions as it takes ALOT of encouragement and high pitch noises and jumping up and down to get him going
    Charlie (foster) and Rocky

  4. #3
    JacksAndLabs is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

    Sounds like you guys are right on track! Your issues are very common ones, and have little to do with you having a pool As for the marking, have you thought about keeping him on a long line until you're finished with collar conditioning? This way you can correct him and get his attention back on you right away. Hope you had a good day today!!
    ~Nicole<br />Grand Ledge, MI<br /><br />

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    Tatyana is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

    And on the land, he went after the wing-clipped pigeons, bringing them back almost always...in spite of the couple of episodes where he would go out and then lose concentration, running around sniffing everything and peeing.
    Were the pigeons in the cover? He relies on his eyes for his water marks, so he might not be as used to hunting in the cover and thus loses interest if he does not "step" on the bird. You might want to "salt" the area to help build his confidence with land marks in the cover. Either way, once he is force fetched, he'll be more business-like about getting his birds and less focused on peeing and sniffing around.

    Sounds like you're making great progress though. I bet Monty will have his JH by this time next year if you're able to keep up the training.

  7. #5
    CaliforniaLabLover's Avatar
    CaliforniaLabLover is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

    The people running this class have discussed force-fetch and how to get started, but don't want anyone who hasn't already done so to do it during these classes. I think they're probably afraid that we'll end up confusing the dogs. These guys run both hunt tests and field trials with their goldens and labs, and are some of the nicest people. Next weekend will be our 3rd weekend of 5, and the last (10th) class will basically be the equivalent to running a practice JH test.

    Today went great- we worked water mostly (Monty and I did one land with a wing-clipped pigeon and the "competition" dog retrieving first again...ended on a major success, so that was good), and Monty did a great job of retrieving ducks and bringing them right back. They kept all of the dogs on a long-line for the water retrieves so that they could feasibly haul them out there (it was a water-land-water scenerio) if need be, and then haul them back to the handler. I had a friend ride along with me (interested in getting her dogs involved, but not able to bring them to the first 3 classes) today and she brought along her camera- got some great shots of everyone, from the looks of it.

    So, I think we'll continue with our collar-conditioning and obedience work at home, continue working with the "hold" command, and try thawing some frozen pigeons out of my freezer for some "fun" retrieves throughout the week in preparation for next weekend, when we'll be moving back to mostly bumper retrieves.

    ~Julie, Rogue, Monty, and Eddy~

    "The reason a dog has so many friends is that he wags his tail instead of his tongue." -Anon

  8. #6
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    GulfCoast is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

    You will eventually end up with 2 freezers. One for what "normal" people keep in a deep freeze, and the other for birds! Good luck with your classes!
    HRCH Ellie Mae MH CGC
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    Tatyana is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: More beginning hunt test training classes today and tomorrow...

    You will eventually end up with 2 freezers. One for what "normal" people keep in a deep freeze, and the other for birds! Wink
    Ditto that!

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