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#6066937 - 12/04/15 02:58 PM Force Fetch Revisited
hunting_guy Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 09/09/15
Posts: 163
Loc: Central Texas
Question regarding my pup during force fetch.

I've done 4 sessions so far (2 days, morning and evening) of 4-5 hand inserts each session so far.

My dog struggled the first session for about 30 seconds on the first hand insert and as soon as he stopped I gave the command for drop and removed the hand. Subsequent hand inserts he sat and looked at me with no struggle with my hand in his mouth (from the point I inserted it to the point I took it out). He does struggle when I'm trying to insert my hand in his mouth but as soon as its in he stops.

Evening session he struggled for about 10 seconds the first insert, then same deal... no struggle on subsequent inserts (I'm leaving my hand in for about 30 seconds-2 minutes even though there is no struggle).

Since then, I place my gloved hand in the back of his mouth and he doesn't struggle at all... he just sits there and looks at me with my hand in his mouth.

My question is two fold:

1. Since force fetch is based on pressure on/ pressure off, if the dog is already comfortable with something in his mouth and isn't struggling (i.e., pressure on), how do I know when to take it out (i.e., pressure off) so that he associates no struggle with release of pressure? This is the main issue for me because lack of struggle is what is supposed to dictate removal of object.

2. Should I continue with a few days of 2 sessions of hand inserts even though he doesn't struggle anymore, or go ahead and proceed to jowl/ear pinch pressure?

A few things to note regarding the force fetch process I am following:

The plan was to introduce hold command after about 4-5 days of simply inserting my gloved and and removing it, once the dog quit struggling, then proceed to jowl pinch pressure with intro of hold command, then ear pinch with hold command, then adding different objects other than my hand, then go back and do the whole process over with collar pressure.

Does anyone see anything standing out that I am doing wrong based on my description of the process I am following?

Thanks again!!!


Edited by hunting_guy (12/04/15 03:08 PM)
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#6067133 - 12/04/15 04:50 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
MS1454 Online   content
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2705
Loc: Houston/Sealy
Which program are you following?
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Originally Posted By: Fooshman
I'll take a Black Female every time.


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#6067136 - 12/04/15 04:51 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
TX_Diver Online   content
Woodsman

Registered: 07/15/14
Posts: 201
I'm not an expert and there are probably a million different theories but one that I remember being explained fairly clearly was Freddie King

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5AdmNosUyc

There's a whole series so his take on what you're looking for may be in Video 11 or 12 or something. I just posted the first in the Force Fetch portion of his training.

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#6067211 - 12/04/15 05:45 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
maximumintensityretriever Offline
Tracker

Registered: 04/16/13
Posts: 512
Loc: Longview, Texas
Your thought process is all wrong. The pressure hasn't even started yet. The point is to convey to the dog that pressure is off when something is in his mouth. That is the good time, not when he drops. This is why you are teaching hold before you start with pressure, to get him comfortable with something in his mouth so he can turn pressure off.

I would suggest a lot more study or finding someone that can help you before proceeding.
_________________________
Tony Marshall
Maximum Intensity Retrievers
https://m.facebook.com/maximumintensity.retrievers
(903) 720-6842

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#6067347 - 12/04/15 07:08 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
hunting_guy Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 09/09/15
Posts: 163
Loc: Central Texas

Tony,

What you said makes perfect sense. I am in the stage of teaching hold and getting him comfortable right now. I didn't phrase my original post very well. For this first stage, I am considering my hand being in his mouth and being uncomfortable as "pressure," and having him release it when he calms down as "pressure off," so to speak.

I've been researching force fetch for quite awhile, and I reference Freddie's you tube videos and both Dokken's book and Waterdog. The program for FF seems pretty close to the same thing, although they differ on when "hold" is introduced.

I'm going to work him a few more days on just the glove with no pressure, then transition to jowl pressure with hold, then ear pinch, then collar.

Thanks everyone for the responses :-)
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#6067444 - 12/04/15 08:19 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
Birdhunter61 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 368
I personally don't use a hand, I start with a canvas bumper. When the pup can successfully do heel, here and sit with a bumper in it's mouth it's ready for force fetch.

Robby

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#6067612 - 12/04/15 09:57 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
Sweese Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 07/03/15
Posts: 197
Loc: North Texas
I do fetch and hold at the same time. I would also start with a wood dowel similar to the other suggestions above. You will need both your hands for this.

The ear pinch creates the pressure for the dog to open the mouth(beginning of a yelp), at the same time say "fetch" in a calm, and quiet voice. Use one of your hands to do the pinch - I pinch the ear to the metal collar (pinch collar or choke chain). Use the other hand to hold the dowel and get ready to place it quickly in the dog's mouth. Have the dowel in front of the dog's mouth before you apply the ear pinch pressure and say fetch.

As soon as the dowel is in the dog's mouth, release the pinch, take your hand that had the dowel and place it under the mouth(or the other hand if it works for you), pull that skin together to tighten the dog's mouth on the dowel and say "hold" at the same time.

Gradually release the pressure from under the mouth if your dog is holding the dowel. Reapply the pressure under the mouth and say "hold" if the dowel gets wobbly. If the dowel falls out before you got the dog to hold just pick it up and move back to fetch. You will need some practice on this.

While the dog is "holding", use your hand that was doing the pinch and rub their head. In other words, you are releasing the hold pressure and making the dog very comfortable while holding. What they are doing is a good thing. Tony is spot on regarding this. NO pressure is applied when the dog is doing the right thing.

Have the dog release with "give" and gently take the dowel from the dog's mouth. Use lots of praise.

Start with very short intervals on hold and increase this during your sessions.

Repeat 4-5 times each session.

When your dog is solid with the dowel from in front of him/her, then on the ground, then while walking up to the object, then you move to other objects like real bumpers and start the whole process over.

Dokken's method is actually very similar to what I like to do. Note: he starts with a table. Some sort of restraint and a table makes it easier. I have used tables and they work great. If you do not have this, just be prepared to get on the ground next to your dog and possibly have a bit more of a struggle. If your dog is collar conditioned through obedience then you can eventually combine the e-collar and pinch pressure at the same time, gradually moving to just the e-collar. You do not need an e-collar for this. It is just another tool.

I suggest no fun bumpers or any other retrieving while you go through this, not from you or the kids. Remember, from this point on your dog needs to fetch on command and hold until commanded to release.

This process is not easy and can be frustrating, even with the best of retrievers. Try to always finish a session good with success for you and your dog.

I usually start with 4-5 fetch/holds per session (2x or 3x per day) and gradually grow from there. Spend the rest of your training time on obedience.

Give yourself a couple of weeks for this.

Mistakes will happen and it is no big deal. Just try to end each session positively.
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Regards,

Jay



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#6067827 - 12/05/15 07:20 AM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: Sweese]
bobcat1 Online   content
Pro Tracker

Registered: 07/22/07
Posts: 1493
Loc: Sanger, Texas
up Perfect Jay.
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#6067930 - 12/05/15 08:51 AM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
hunting_guy Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 09/09/15
Posts: 163
Loc: Central Texas
Thanks for the advice Jay. It really helps to have people with experience point me in the right direction.

I'll try and post some pictures of my set up for FF, and I'll switch him over to a dowel this afternoon to see how he does with it.

Since I've started, I haven't thrown any bumpers like you said. Everything I have researched said not to do that until the entire process is complete.
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#6070355 - 12/07/15 12:44 AM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
BradyBuck Online   content
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 10/18/07
Posts: 5130
Loc: Abilene, TX
If your dog has a strong desire already you might look into Hillmann's method. It's a non ear pinch method that is much simpler IMO and less easier to screw up.

I think for a first time trainer who doesn't have experience with traditional FF methods it is really great. The dog must already have a lot of drive though or it won't work. If done after following his puppy program your dog should have a strong desire already.

There are many trainers having lots of success and training dogs at very high levels using this method.

Just something to think about. When the time comes for myself to FF I'll have to decide which route I want to take. It will all depend on the dog for me.

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#6071608 - 12/07/15 04:50 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
Angie B Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 04/03/08
Posts: 1429
Loc: Aubrey, TX
Great advice from Robbie, Tony and Jay. FF your first dog is a mess for you, not so much the dog. I remember leaning on a big midwest pro for help when I went through it the first time. It killed me... He talked us through it. Every evening I'd call him with a progress report exclaiming, "This is NOT how it went in your seminar".... He was patient, I was a mess,,, but we got it done.

Angie
_________________________
"Developing the Potential"
www.tiogaretrievers.com

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#6073791 - 12/08/15 06:24 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
hunting_guy Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 09/09/15
Posts: 163
Loc: Central Texas
Thanks Angie! That's encouraging. I should probably have a professional do it but I've gone this far with it so I might as well go all the way I figure. Just to update everyone, I had a small snag with him injuring his leg. Vet said to keep working him but not anything real strenuous for a few days. It kind of worked out that we were starting FF and all he is doing is sitting on a table holding a dowel. I was doing some obedience after to keep him interested but holding off on that for few days. I'm not letting him jump up or down off the table for now of course.

Introduced hold with dowel and am just tapping his nose saying hold over and over for about 5-7 times depending on how well he is holding it. He's getting the concept now as he is starting to figure out hold means keep it firmly in his mouth. He doesn't squirm at all anymore and is requiring less taps on his nose to hold securely. I'll probably introduce pressure sometime around Friday.
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#6086029 - 12/15/15 05:48 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
hunting_guy Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 09/09/15
Posts: 163
Loc: Central Texas
So just to update you guys on my progress with this, I had my FF schedule postponed a few days... so I started my first actual session applying pressure via ear pinch today.

So when I started today I wasn't pinching hard enough and didn't have my finger far enough back to the meaty part of his ear at first to get him to yelp and open his mouth... yea I'm a softy when it comes to my dog. I stopped for a second, went back and and reread the advice you guys provided here. Went back to the table and got set up again. This time I pinched the meaty part, said fetch, and really pinched. He yelped, opened his mouth a little and the dowel slid right in. I immediately released the pinch and commanded hold while tapping on his nose. The second time he did better, then third time he did awesome. Fourth time I barely got my hand in his ear and he actually leaned forward slightly and bit the dowel when I said fetch. So he understands what we are trying to accomplish. He is also really starting to hold the dowel with force, I've tried wiggling it out and he won't let it go and will actually tighten his grip when I mess with the dowel until I command "give it."

I know its only the first actual session with ear pressure and I've got a lot of work to do but I'm pretty proud of how he reacted. I'm about to go work another session in before it gets dark.

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for their suggestions.


Edited by hunting_guy (12/15/15 05:50 PM)
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#6086218 - 12/15/15 07:32 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
Sweese Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 07/03/15
Posts: 197
Loc: North Texas
Originally Posted By: hunting_guy
So just to update you guys on my progress with this, I had my FF schedule postponed a few days... so I started my first actual session applying pressure via ear pinch today.

So when I started today I wasn't pinching hard enough and didn't have my finger far enough back to the meaty part of his ear at first to get him to yelp and open his mouth... yea I'm a softy when it comes to my dog. I stopped for a second, went back and and reread the advice you guys provided here. Went back to the table and got set up again. This time I pinched the meaty part, said fetch, and really pinched. He yelped, opened his mouth a little and the dowel slid right in. I immediately released the pinch and commanded hold while tapping on his nose. The second time he did better, then third time he did awesome. Fourth time I barely got my hand in his ear and he actually leaned forward slightly and bit the dowel when I said fetch. So he understands what we are trying to accomplish. He is also really starting to hold the dowel with force, I've tried wiggling it out and he won't let it go and will actually tighten his grip when I mess with the dowel until I command "give it."

I know its only the first actual session with ear pressure and I've got a lot of work to do but I'm pretty proud of how he reacted. I'm about to go work another session in before it gets dark.

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for their suggestions.


Great news. It sounds like this may go fairly quickly. Shoot me a PM if you need any help on this. We can connect on the phone.
_________________________
Regards,

Jay



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#6086295 - 12/15/15 08:04 PM Re: Force Fetch Revisited [Re: hunting_guy]
epp838 Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 12/09/14
Posts: 211
Loc: DFW, TX
Good info, I think I may have to FF my 1 yr old vizsla. She retrieves good at home and playing in the field but in real hunts she's 50/50 on bringing it back. She's eager to break off and starting to find more birds. I guess it's not the worst problem with a pointing dog but I want her to finish the process before getting on another bird.

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