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#5596970 - 02/12/15 08:49 PM Improving enthusiasm on blinds?
kruzie96 Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/29/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Austin, TX
I'm working on handling with my dog and he has the commands down, but takes casts with much less enthusiasm than he goes after marks with. When I send him on back, he'll often walk/trot to the dummy instead of run. After he picks it up he will run back. Any tips on improving this?

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#5597115 - 02/12/15 10:00 PM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
maximumintensityretriever Offline
Tracker

Registered: 04/16/13
Posts: 512
Loc: Longview, Texas
Define "has his commands down". What have you done in training so far? Are you following a program? How old is the dog? What is the level of desire on marks? How have you taught the dog the principals of go, stop, and change direction? Is this dog force fetched and collar conditioned? How long have you spent from the first back cast until you considered to be done with TT?

Sorry for all the questions but you need to provide WAY more information to get a good response.
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#5597204 - 02/12/15 11:12 PM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
kruzie96 Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/29/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Austin, TX
Understood...figured it'd be easier to answer questions smile

By "has his commands down" I mean that he understands them and takes them. Sit to whistle, left and right Back, and both overs. I've been using Smartwork. He just turned 3. He has his JH, and double marked retrieves are no issue. He tears after marks and if I give him a mark or fun bumper in between back casts he goes after it with enthusiasm. He is both force fetched and collar conditioned. Time wise, we were working on handling last spring but then had a lapse in training due to other time constraints. Picked it back up this spring about a month ago, training 3-4 days a week. I would feel like it was time to move onto Double T, except for this issue. I could keep plugging away, but I figured I ask for some advice. Thanx in advance smile

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#5597295 - 02/13/15 06:03 AM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
TXPride Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 1876
Loc: Lost
I would think it's fairly normal not to have as much "enthusiasm" on blinds, compared to marks, but up to you what is acceptable.

are you are talking about pile work with him, where he knows the bumper is there? Or cold blinds, where he is relying on you to guide him and he doesn't know where it's at?


Edited by TXPride (02/13/15 06:04 AM)
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#5597491 - 02/13/15 08:29 AM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
Birdhunter61 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 368
All dogs would rather pick up marks than run into the unknown, which is what a blind is. Typically the momentum issue is fixed when forcing the dog to the pile. If you don't allow the momentum to be slow there, then it doesn't become a habit. Don't run any cold blinds with the dog until it has completed the double t. Forcing the dog to the back pile while on the t/ dble t is standard. Also realize that you should not stop the dog on the way to the pile but once per every 3-4 sends. Otherwise you will have the dog looking for the whistle. This also can cause bad momentum.

Robby

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#5597600 - 02/13/15 09:35 AM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
maximumintensityretriever Offline
Tracker

Registered: 04/16/13
Posts: 512
Loc: Longview, Texas
Originally Posted By: kruzie96
Understood...figured it'd be easier to answer questions smile

By "has his commands down" I mean that he understands them and takes them. Sit to whistle, left and right Back, and both overs. I've been using Smartwork. He just turned 3. He has his JH, and double marked retrieves are no issue. He tears after marks and if I give him a mark or fun bumper in between back casts he goes after it with enthusiasm. He is both force fetched and collar conditioned. Time wise, we were working on handling last spring but then had a lapse in training due to other time constraints. Picked it back up this spring about a month ago, training 3-4 days a week. I would feel like it was time to move onto Double T, except for this issue. I could keep plugging away, but I figured I ask for some advice. Thanx in advance smile


Some dogs just aren't that fired up about drill work. The key concept here is that you are going to have to decide whether the dog is giving a clear lack of effort or is still confused about what their job is. Unfortunately you can't force style but a good blind attitude starts in basics.

How did your FTP go with this dog? Did you enroute force? Are your piles clearly visible? Have you been doing your drills in the same location every time? Have you been stopping the dog with the rope or the e collar? Does the dog start out slow and pick up the pace as they get closer to the pile? Does the dog pop? The solution may depend on a lot of factors.

One basic principal to understand before you use the collar is that if you use pressure for clear lack of effort then momentum will be gained. However, if you use pressure for confusion all sorts of issues are going to pop up. I'm pretty quick to simplify when it comes to handling because its so important to develop a good blind attitude. I find that momentum comes with confidence and on average spend approximately 2 months from the first back until I'm through with TT with the average dog.
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#5597611 - 02/13/15 09:41 AM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
maximumintensityretriever Offline
Tracker

Registered: 04/16/13
Posts: 512
Loc: Longview, Texas
P.S. I hate timelines. They are the devil!!! I only ask to get an idea if you have spent enough time schooling your dog.
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#5597901 - 02/13/15 12:58 PM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
kruzie96 Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/29/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Austin, TX
Thanx to all for the advice. I realize when I ask a question like this it's hard to answer without knowing what all has been done. I'm also opening myself up to criticism, but hey I'd rather get the advice from people that know what they're doing smile

I did force to pile, however this dog is pretty sensitive. He takes collar corrections, but can shut down if over done. I may need to re-visit force to pile and adjust for this dog. I also understand about sending him through to back, more than stopping him, I do it 1-1 at most, but should prob change to 3-1 or 4-1.

I don't think he's confused, but I do think it could be related to a confidence issue. Piles are clearly visible, mix of orange and white dummies on a soccer field, same location every morning. Stopping him the whistle, no issues stopping so I haven't felt the need for a collar correction there or a check cord. He does not pop, but he does start out slow and then pick up as he gets closer to the pile.

My initial question was whether I should work on this issue before moving from single T to double T. Based just on the questions, I'm thinking I should revisit FTP, and possibly shorten my back pile (100 yds right now) with white dummies to try to build confidence.

Thanx again for chiming in smile

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#5597928 - 02/13/15 01:20 PM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
TXPride Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 1876
Loc: Lost
You are on the right track when mentioning ways to build confidence. Simplify first.

Also, if its sensitive to collar corrections, it may be getting nervous about being "forced" again to the pile.

Try using a heeling stick when sending while its close. Send back, and whack it on his butt. In theory, he will be turning or bolting quickly to avoid that simulation. I'd go that route first with a collar sensitive dog. Chances are if its going out quickly, it is less likely to slow down.
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#5598041 - 02/13/15 02:56 PM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
maximumintensityretriever Offline
Tracker

Registered: 04/16/13
Posts: 512
Loc: Longview, Texas
I think that you have answered some of your own questions. It does sound to me like it is a confidence issue but it also sounds like your dog was never properly FTP. The other thing that I'm confused about is that you said you are following Smartworks but then say that you are not using a check cord. Have you done three handed casting, mini T, and single T on the rope prior to this? What was your dogs attitude on those drills?

I think that there are ultimately a few ways to get through this issue but would strongly encourage you to shore up some of your training where there are major gaps. The first thing I would do would be to revisit FTP with the understanding that you are not done until the following statements are true:

My dog is locking in to the pile
My dog is not bugging
My dog is going on the back command every time
I can force my dog enroute to the pile at varying distances and get a STABLE response to pressure.
My dog is returning with as much enthusiasm as he went out.
I have had at least 3 consecutive sessions where all of the above are true AND I have had no corrections.

I would move from the T field when doing this but you must understand that FTP is an absolute prerequisite to all handling and pile based drills.
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#5599652 - 02/14/15 04:33 PM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
Texasflyway Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 02/01/15
Posts: 2
Loc: Texas
Pattern blinds,especially identified pattern blinds are a good transition from the t pattern and true cold blinds.pattern blinds will help the dogs looking out,momentum and attitude on blinds in general the more you repeat them daily weekly etc. they become familiar with them confidence and momentum increase if done correctly
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#5602759 - 02/16/15 04:14 PM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
kruzie96 Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/29/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Austin, TX
I haven't gone back to FTP yet, but this am we worked on building enthusiasm to back. I think it's a confidence/trying to figure it out issue. He doesn't pop, but I think his methodical demeanor it largely in part because he is anticipating a sit whistle and a subsequent cast. When he gets past the apex with no sit, he picks up a bit. So today I threw out a left and right, so they are there, but only sent him on backs, throwing the dummy out each time, but still using a dead bird/back command, mainly working on enthusiasm, confidence, and success. Kept it fairly short and it seemed to go well.

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#5603907 - 02/17/15 07:38 AM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
Angie B Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 04/03/08
Posts: 1429
Loc: Aubrey, TX
Show me blinds, walk out blinds and pop up blinds work well when transitioning to cold blinds.

Angie
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#5604097 - 02/17/15 09:37 AM Re: Improving enthusiasm on blinds? [Re: kruzie96]
Birdhunter61 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 368
So just force him to the back pile. You still are teaching them to deal with pressure on the T. Once you allow something to become a habit it becomes harder to fix.

Robby


Edited by Birdhunter61 (02/17/15 09:37 AM)

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