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#6975114 - 11/28/17 11:42 AM New to training advice
Triple7 Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 03/06/13
Posts: 190
I have a Yellow lab that is almost 2yrs old. He is a natural retriever and has a great drive. I have started working with him for hunting a little while ago and was just looking for some tips. I don't have all the time in the world since I coach 2 baseball teams, have a full time job and all the rest.
Here is what we have accomplished:
Sits, Stays (need to work on this more cause he will break)
heals, and has been gun trained. (he wants to retrieve when he hears a gun)
What should be my next steps? Force fetch? Keep working him on retrieves add feathers?

It would be nice to have him ready for next dove and duck season. Any advice would be great.

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#6975371 - 11/28/17 03:24 PM Re: New to training advice [Re: Triple7]
BradyBuck Online   content
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 10/18/07
Posts: 5591
Loc: Abilene, TX
Sounds like he loves to retrieve so that's great!

What you need to work on now is obedience.

Sit means sit till released or if you are using stay. If he moves put him back. Build up the amount of time that you require him to sit still and gradually add distractions...Ball, bumper, Birds..etc

Teach him to heel. On lead and off lead. You can do only left sided or two sided.

Next teach him to hold. If your sit is solid this is much easier. Place a bumper in his mouth and make him hold. DO NOT get angry or loose your cool. If he drops it pick it up and put it back in. When he's good with a bumper move to a bird.

Build up to being able to do all your obedience while holding.


At this point you should have a dog that is obedient, loves to retrieve and is steady.

Youll need to decide if you want to use an e-collar and force Fetch.

If so you need to buy a good program or get help from a pro.

I would recommend TRT2 by Mike Lardy.

Do you want your dog to handle? (Stop on whistle and Take hand signals)

This all takes time and patience. Do not get frustrated.

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#6975483 - 11/28/17 04:54 PM Re: New to training advice [Re: BradyBuck]
Triple7 Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 03/06/13
Posts: 190
Originally Posted By: BradyBuck
Sounds like he loves to retrieve so that's great!

What you need to work on now is obedience.

Sit means sit till released or if you are using stay. If he moves put him back. Build up the amount of time that you require him to sit still and gradually add distractions...Ball, bumper, Birds..etc

Teach him to heel. On lead and off lead. You can do only left sided or two sided.

Next teach him to hold. If your sit is solid this is much easier. Place a bumper in his mouth and make him hold. DO NOT get angry or loose your cool. If he drops it pick it up and put it back in. When he's good with a bumper move to a bird.

Build up to being able to do all your obedience while holding.


At this point you should have a dog that is obedient, loves to retrieve and is steady.

Youll need to decide if you want to use an e-collar and force Fetch.

If so you need to buy a good program or get help from a pro.

I would recommend TRT2 by Mike Lardy.

Do you want your dog to handle? (Stop on whistle and Take hand signals)

This all takes time and patience. Do not get frustrated.



Hey thanks for the advice. I'm not really concerned about whistles or hand signals. I just want him to wait until we are done shooting and go get my ducks, if my hunting partners want their ducks ..... they can get their own dogs haha.

I've heard the phrase meat dog, I'm guessing that kinda what I'm after. Just a buddy who will get the ducks bring them back. Nothing special. Doubles, sure. Blinds, meh. If he didn't see if go down I doubt I'm gonna see if either.

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#6975644 - 11/28/17 07:02 PM Re: New to training advice [Re: Triple7]
Guy Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 12/06/05
Posts: 27348
Loc: Lake X
Get yourself a blank gun. Throw bumper, fire gun, make dog hold steady with gun fire, this will break that bad habit. I bet if you shoot the blank gun now and not even throw a bumper your dog will take off. Your dog has learned that gun fire means "go!"

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#6975728 - 11/28/17 07:56 PM Re: New to training advice [Re: Triple7]
Birdhunter61 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 401
No dog sees all the birds shot, most just learn the difference between a decoy and a dead duck. They should all handle, and be able to retrieve cripples swimming away, or running away by being handled to the bird.
The more realistic circumstances you train your dog in the better it will be.

Robby

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#6975943 - 11/28/17 11:23 PM Re: New to training advice [Re: Triple7]
Exbellicus Online   content
Pro Tracker

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 1514
Loc: DFW
You should get on a training program. If you have 15 minutes a few times a week you can train your dog far above scenario you described. It's not a meat dog if it can only get the 1 duck is sees hit the water. A program I think is decent and free is Freddy Kings...look it up on YouTube. Not sure how much duck hunting you have done...but you can definitely see many birds your dog cannot, especially distance shots or in cover. When the dog's head is at water level it's much more difficult to see than you standing 6ft up looking out.

If you always hunt shallow water when you can walk and get your own ducks then I guess getting your own that's a fine expectation to have for your dog, but I think you should aim higher.

As far as not breaking...you have a couple options. Either put your gun down for a couple hunts and train while your buddies shoot, or stake him in the ground and only release him when you're ready for him to retrieve. If you get/make some time of stand or platform for your dog to sit on, I've found with my dog it helps them stay put a little better. Instead of just standing up and walking around, they have to actively make the decision to jump down.

I would strongly advise to not force fetch yet. You and your dog don't sound ready for that step. And be very careful with an e-collar or you can really f*** your dog up. If you don't have the time, pay someone qualified to train him for you. Not sure about your buddies but it doesn't do me much good to have a halfway trained dog running around in the blind and spending so much time trying to swim around aimlessly looking for a duck that you flare the next 3 groups coming in.

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#6976240 - 11/29/17 09:21 AM Re: New to training advice [Re: Exbellicus]
Triple7 Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 03/06/13
Posts: 190
Originally Posted By: Exbellicus
You should get on a training program. If you have 15 minutes a few times a week you can train your dog far above scenario you described. It's not a meat dog if it can only get the 1 duck is sees hit the water. A program I think is decent and free is Freddy Kings...look it up on YouTube. Not sure how much duck hunting you have done...but you can definitely see many birds your dog cannot, especially distance shots or in cover. When the dog's head is at water level it's much more difficult to see than you standing 6ft up looking out.

If you always hunt shallow water when you can walk and get your own ducks then I guess getting your own that's a fine expectation to have for your dog, but I think you should aim higher.

As far as not breaking...you have a couple options. Either put your gun down for a couple hunts and train while your buddies shoot, or stake him in the ground and only release him when you're ready for him to retrieve. If you get/make some time of stand or platform for your dog to sit on, I've found with my dog it helps them stay put a little better. Instead of just standing up and walking around, they have to actively make the decision to jump down.

I would strongly advise to not force fetch yet. You and your dog don't sound ready for that step. And be very careful with an e-collar or you can really f*** your dog up. If you don't have the time, pay someone qualified to train him for you. Not sure about your buddies but it doesn't do me much good to have a halfway trained dog running around in the blind and spending so much time trying to swim around aimlessly looking for a duck that you flare the next 3 groups coming in.


Yeah currently I'm doing a lot more training than hunting. Especially since birds are few and far between in my area currently. I'll check out the video. I would be super happy with him, if he was steady, I could send on a line, and deliver to hand everytime.
I will most likely send him to a trainer for a bit, my lack of training experience shouldn't hinder his ability. Which I know he has.

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#6976473 - 11/29/17 12:00 PM Re: New to training advice [Re: Triple7]
daveindenton Online   content
Green Horn

Registered: 06/26/13
Posts: 9
As others have mentioned, don’t be too quick to dismiss teaching whistle sits and hand signals. He won’t see them all every time…and even when he does, you may want them retrieved (or not retrieved) on your terms…not his. Once you teach it, handling is indispensable and its usefulness isn’t just limited to hunting situations. Teaching him to stop and sit on a whistle can save him from cars, snakes, barbed wire fences, etc. Take your time and teach him as much as he’s capable of learning…you’ll be glad you did.

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